Best Alternatives to Smoking For Stress Relief

Why do people smoke?

Smoking can be used for various reason from fun to stress relief, pleasure or due to social pressure. In some of the cultures, smoking was even considered sophistication, men in tailored suits with cigarette or women with elegant caps and frocks holding long, sleek cigarette were found more attractive and appealing to people. In some communities, social acceptance was also one of the major reasons to start smoking. However, in all ages and in all communities, people found use of tobacco as best stress relief cure. This stress can be induced due to some of daily life problems, or for weight loss, peer pressure etc.

Researches regarding smoking and stress shows that apart from aiding people to relax, smoking increases the stress, tension and anxiety. Smoking creates an immediate effect of relaxation, which makes smokers believe that it reduces stress and anxiety. While the jury is still out on vaping as an improved alternate to smoking, there are already studies that indicate it has its own set of negative health consequences. Thankfully, there are many alternatives to smoking that can reduce stress effectively, with no simultaneous negative impact on your health. Read on to find out how you can do this naturally.

1. Relax, Breathe and Locate

If you are determined to find a solution, you must look out for the problem first. And to do so, you must try relaxing your mind simply by taking deep breaths or having a glass of water, a warm bath, stretching or massage. Our bodies usually respond to stress by releasing hormones which increases heart rate and hence, increasing blood pressure. These simple techniques improve your heart rate, which then normalise your overall health when you stop smoking and help you handle the problem in a positive way. Once you have relaxed, take a few moments to locate how and where the stress is affecting you. Knowing the problem is half of the solution for any problem.

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2. Meditate, music and yoga

These techniques might sound very different from one another, but they are all interconnected and have same results. Meditation includes breathing or taking a step back, go to a quiet space to give yourself some time which eventually leads to peace for your mind, reducing urge to smoke. Similarly, music gives calming vibes to your brain which lowers your stress level and also reduces your urge to smoke. Yoga is a combination of music and meditation, this includes stretching of your body with a clam music which re-energises your brain and gives you remarkable strength to fight the problem. This strength not only helps in solving the problem, but also reduces your stress level simultaneously, lowering your urge to smoke.

3. Follow your heart

One of the best way to cope or fight stress is following hobby or simply following your heart. Either cook a great meal or start painting, write a poem or story, watch a movie or any other hobby that you have. The trick is in doing something that you find comfortable, which will distract you from some of your other worries. While this may sound a bit cliché, studies have indicated that doing what you love or being with loved ones has the ability to create a positive atmosphere and emotional state, which helps in stress reduction greatly.

4. Time

To use time to its fullest is a talent very few people possess. To many, time is a relative concept that they take very lightly – they don’t realise its importance is beyond calculation. Giving yourself some time or doing the right thing at the right time is essential to fight problems like anxiety and stress. It’s important to take time not for yourself, but also for the thing causing stress. It might get better with time or in this time you may understand the problem better, which will help you to manage it better. Hence, giving some time to yourself or the issue at hand may allow you to cope with the problem without stressing yourself much and end up smoking.

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5. Communication

This is a crucial factor in mental health and stress relief, as it can help you lessen your burden and lighten your mind, or it may help you find a good advice or solution regarding the issue bothering you. You don’t have open up to people if you don’t want to, however. Today, anonymous forums allow you to simply express how you feel or unburden yourself about the problem, and here people can anonymously talk to you. If not, share it with friends, family or any important people you have in your life.

6. Caffeinate and Decaffeinate.

Usually, when people are stressed, they tend to gravitate to something sweet or enjoy a coffee or tea. While this may provide temporary stress relief, studies indicate that caffeine can compound the effects of stress. On certain people, the effects include feeling tense or jittery, and it can prevent a good night’s rest by blocking melatonin, the sleep hormone. If you find that your body does metabolise caffeine in a healthy manner, it is best to avoid. Consider an alternative such as herbal tea or honey water, lemon water or simply a warm or cold glass of water.

Bottom line

Stress, pressure or any other reason is not enough to risk your life over it. To take care of yourself is above all therefore, smoking might seem cool or relaxing momentarily but it’s only a coward way out of problem, in fact it does not even solves a problem!! If you follow these simple steps and make yourself a priority, stress and all other problems can be solved in no time without smoking or taking any other form of drug.

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