Does Smoking Relieve Depression and Anxiety?

Published: September 13, 2017
Dear TeenHealthFX,

Does smoking relieve depression and anxiety?

Signed: Does Smoking Relieve Depression and Anxiety?

Dear Does Smoking Relieve Depression and Anxiety?,

Many think that smoking calms the nerves, and relieves one from anxiety and depression. But research has found that in fact the opposite is true. Researchers from Columbia University and New York State Psychiatric Institute found that smoking increases the risk of some anxiety disorders in teens and young adults. The researchers studied data on 688 teenagers from upstate New York. They found that teenagers who smoke at least one pack of cigarettes a day are at greater risk of developing agoraphobia, generalized anxiety disorder, and panic disorder in young adulthood. 

One reason many smokers believe that smoking helps calm them down is that they spend most of their day suffering from the misery of temporary withdrawal from nicotine when they wait for their next cigarette. Having the cigarette relieves the craving and can produce a sense of relief in the smoker. 

If you smoke, quitting can be one of the most beneficial things you can do for your heath. For more information on local cessation programs and for smoking cessation literature, you can also contact the:

·         The American Cancer Society at 1-800-227-2345

·         The National Cancer Institute at 1-800-422-6237



Signed: TeenHealthFX