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posted by Dopefish on Monday February 24 2014, @09:00AM   Printer-friendly
from the bender-might-be-less-cranky-if-he-ditched-cigars dept.

lhsi writes "A recent publication on the British Medical Journal finds that stopping smoking improves mental health: "Change in mental health after smoking cessation: systematic review and meta-analysis" (CC BY-NC 3.0).

A lot of smokers claim that smoking has mental health benefits; reducing depression and anxiety, and for relaxation and relieving stress. However the study suggests this is likely mis-attributing the ability of cigarettes to abolish nicotine withdrawal as a beneficial effect on mental health. The study notes that some health professionals are reluctant to recommend stopping smoking as a way to help mental health problems due to the fear that it might make things worse, but this study suggests that it actually would help.

The main conclusion of the study:

Smoking cessation is associated with reduced depression, anxiety, and stress and improved positive mood and quality of life compared with continuing to smoke. The effect size seems as large for those with psychiatric disorders as those without. The effect sizes are equal or larger than those of antidepressant treatment for mood and anxiety disorders."

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  • (Score: 3, Interesting) by cockroach on Monday February 24 2014, @11:37AM

    by cockroach (2266) on Monday February 24 2014, @11:37AM (#5749)

    As somebody who has tried to switch to the e-cig a few times I have yet to succeed. It seems that, as ridiculous as it may sound, the lack of time limit (i.e. a normal smoke lasts a few minutes, the e-cig would potentially last for hours) makes the "smoking" experience a bit weird. If you don't mind me asking, how did you get used to that?

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  • (Score: 2, Informative) by egcagrac0 on Monday February 24 2014, @11:59AM

    by egcagrac0 (2705) on Monday February 24 2014, @11:59AM (#5753)

    Analog vs e-cig is just ... different.

    The upside of the e-cig is that you can have "just a puff", with no particular need to keep going for a whole cigarette. The other big win in some cases is no need to step outside.

    But yes, the draw is different, the consistency of the smoke is different, etc.

    • (Score: 1) by EvilJim on Wednesday February 26 2014, @12:25AM

      by EvilJim (2501) on Wednesday February 26 2014, @12:25AM (#7026) Journal

      Exactly this, I wondered when to stop the first few times I was using e-cig. time it with other people to start, stop when they've finished a normal cig, I found I didn't need that whole cigarette time to get the satisfaction and it got down to just a couple of puffs, then I started forgetting to bring it to work and that wasn't even a problem anymore. now just using occasionally at times when I feel I would be at risk of bumming a cig from someone else such as out on the drinks.

  • (Score: 2) by lubricus on Monday February 24 2014, @04:44PM

    by lubricus (232) on Monday February 24 2014, @04:44PM (#5947)

    This was really strange. I actually find I do the opposite. I run into a problem, need to pace around a bit, but now when I go outside, I take a couple puffs, and head back in after only 2 or 3 minutes. It's only after I'm back at my desk that I realize that I'm not satisfied. I guess the lack of a natural time constraint merely exposes your previous relationship to cigarettes (maybe you wanted to stay longer, maybe you were waiting to go back in).

    ... sorry about the typos
  • (Score: 1) by Wierd0n3 on Monday February 24 2014, @06:22PM

    by Wierd0n3 (1033) on Monday February 24 2014, @06:22PM (#6021)

    My ex-gf tried e-cigs, It was actually kinda funny. she set it up, puffed a few times and said it "felt weird" My mom was visiting at the time, so she went outside to be more polite about the cig. after a few minutes, she jumps back in, and says "I know whats wrong! I feel like im puffing a BONG!" she realises my mom is right there, (we had only been going out a few months and this was their first time meeting) turns beet red, and starts apologising "im a good person, Honest!" mom just laughed.

    she kept at it for a couple weeks after that, but then she broke down crying saying she didn't feel in control while she was quitting, and went back to smoking. although she smoked less after that, just 3 a day where it was half a pack.

    • (Score: 1) by egcagrac0 on Monday February 24 2014, @07:24PM

      by egcagrac0 (2705) on Monday February 24 2014, @07:24PM (#6080)

      "I feel like im puffing a BONG!"

      This. Exactly this. It feels like a bong or a hookah, and little like a cigarette. The draw is often very easy, and the "smoke" is very very smooth.