|Action on Smoking and Health
A National Legal-Action Antismoking Organization
Entirely Supported by Tax-Deductible Contributions
Excerpts from Smoking's allure varies by gender, study says
Orange County Register
Men and women have long had separate bathrooms and sports teams. But it may be what they really need is their own stop-smoking classes. In a rare "real life" study conducted outside the laboratory, researchers at the University of California, Irvine, found that men and women smoked for different reasons.
Both reached for cigarettes when angry or anxious -- but these urges were stronger for men. And only men used nicotine to combat sadness and exhaustion.
Women smoked more often when they were happy. And smoking appeared to have an actual medicinal effect on men but not on women. It reduced anger and fatigue.
"We're talking shades of gray here," said Dr. Ralph Delfino, an epidemiologist at UCI's College of Medicine, during the American Thoracic Society's recent annual conference in San Diego. "But men probably smoke more to alter their moods and improve performance than women do. Women may have a greater tendency to smoke because of external cues, such as for social interaction."
The bottom line, said Delfino, is it is increasingly apparent that both genders use nicotine to regulate moods, emotions and personality traits. This has important implications for stop-smoking programs, which, for example, might want to add an anger-management component for men.
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ASH is a 31-year-old national legal-action antismoking and nonsmokers' rights organization which is entirely supported by tax-deductible contributions.