Does smoking trigger stress or vice versa?

‘Stressful’ clearly tops the list of words to describe 2020. Everyone – whether living alone or with family, single or attached, living in an urban or rural area – has been affected by the pandemic. No one knows when things will be back to normal. No one knows whether there will be another lockdown. No one really has a clue. So, of course, everyone’s stressed. And smokers are among the worst hit. Does smoking trigger stress, or does stress trigger smoking?

For smokers, Nicotine is considered as a great stress reducer. Stressed at the office? Let’s go for a smoke. Stressed in rush hour traffic? Light up another one. Stressed from the favourite football team’s loss? Yup, have a deep drag. Relationship issues? Nicotine’s always there.

Smokers truly believe that smoking Nicotine reduces their stress. And they are wrong.

Smokers are not managing their stress by inhaling Nicotine. As a matter of fact, they are merely managing the stress caused by withdrawal from Nicotine. So, does smoking trigger stress? NO it only increases it, it’s a vicious cycle.

So, it shouldn’t surprise anyone that according to a recent study, people smoked more during the first 42 days of lockdown.1 That’s tragic, as smokers are particularly vulnerable to respiratory illnesses. And now we know that people suffering from respiratory health issues are among the most at-risk groups for COVID-19.

If you are a smoker, this is the time to quit. This is the time to switch to vaping. If you are feeling stressed and believe that smoking will eliminate it, think again. Nicotine withdrawal is a real reason for your stress.

Smoking has been linked to numerous serious ailments, from respiratory problems to cancer. It weakens the immunity system, and during a pandemic like this, what you need is your body’s immunity to be stronger.

Many smokers are under the impression that Nicotine is the main problem that leads to all these health problems. That is a myth. As a matter of fact, it’s the tobacco – specifically, the burning of the tobacco – that releases toxins into the body and nearby air. Not many smokers know that there are close to 600 ingredients in a cigarette. When they burn, they produce up to 7000 chemicals, out of which, at least 69 are known to cause cancer.

Vaping is a better alternative as it has been proven to be 95% less harmful when compared to smoking.2 This is the time to switch to vaping to quit.

Smoking not only ruins your health but also destroys the health of those around you. Passive smoking has been linked to everything from respiratory illnesses to critical ailments. There is no such thing as passive vaping! Vaping produces an aerosol that has an incredibly short life (meaning it doesn’t hang around or affect those around you). In addition, vaping does not burn the ingredients, it warms them, which means they don’t change state the way they do when burned in tobacco. VAPING IS 95% LESS HARMFUL THAN SMOKING!2

In fact, smoking has created a global public health crisis that is costing hundreds of thousands of lives every year – all avoidable. Every year, the Government is forced to spend billions of pounds to treat illnesses that arise from smoking. This is money that could be spent on education, roads, unemployment and connectivity. How much will the increased smoking during the pandemic, cost in lives and £s?

Smoking doesn’t reduce stress. It only cultivates it. Smoking is stressful for the smoker, those around them, and society at large. The time to stop smoking is now – reduce the stress on your body and on society as a whole.

It’s never too late to quit smoking. If’ you’d like to learn more about switching to vaping as a way to quit smoking take a look at our Switch to Quit programme which has been designed to make quitting possible for EVERY smoker.



    1. Smoking Habits During Lockdown – a study commissioned by Ibiza Vape Club, conducted by One poll, March 2020.
    2. McNeill, A. et al. Evidence review of e- cigarettes and heated tobacco products 2018. A report commissioned by Public Health England (2018).

Joanne Emmerson FCIM
Head of Marketing, Ibiza Club

Joanne is a fellow of the Royal Chartered Institute of Marketing and has 30+ years marketing experience. She has worked all around the world, is published in 7 countries and teaches marketing communication theory at Post Graduate level both in the UK and USA. She has worked alongside many government bodies, health organisations and national charities.