Researchers at the Universities of Birmingham, Oxford and Kings College London found that quitting was just as effective as taking antidepressants.
The findings challenge the common belief that smoking cigarettes can tackle stress and depression.
Gemma Taylor, who led the study, said:
“Their mood actually improves because they’re no longer reliant on a drug to be normal.”
Writing online in the British Medical Journal (BMJ), the researchers said:
“Smoking cessation is associated with reduced depression, anxiety, and stress and improved positive mood and quality of life compared with continuing to smoke.”
They acknowledged many smokers believed smoking helps them wind down.
In Warwickshire there is a free Stop Smoking Service. For help and advice call 0800 0852 917, text LIFE to 80800 or visit Smokefeewarwickshire.