How quitting smoking could improve your sex life

If your sex life isn’t sizzling then smoking could be to blame. It’s another great reason for you – and your partner – to quit.

by Psychologies

sensual couple

Bad breath. Smoke-infused hair. Stained teeth. No wonder smokers’ sex lives are suffering. Almost 90% of respondents surveyed by dating website Match.com said they prefer not to date a smoker. So there's even fewer reasons to carry on smoking. Some people are put off quitting smoking by the potential weight gain, but there’s always Nicotinell® Support Icemint gum, which can help you manage your weight while you’re trying to give up.


Smoking can play havoc with your energy levels. Cigarette smoke contains carbon monoxide, which sticks to haemoglobin – the pigment in the red blood cells that carries oxygen. When there are raised levels of carbon monoxide in the blood, it affects the body’s ability to carry oxygen. Stub out the cigarettes, though, and you should notice an improvement in your energy levels within 72 hours.


Cigarette tar damages the airways and the lungs, so it’s no surprise that smokers often find that they're short of breath. One result is that smoking could mean your sex life is a little less energetic. The good news is that quitting cigarettes will give you your breath back – with an improvement in lung capacity of up to 10% within nine months.


If your partner is a smoker, it may take him longer to get in the mood for sex than if he were a non-smoker, according to research published in the British Journal of Urology International. In the study, a group of men participating in a two-month smoking cessation programme were monitored for their reactions to an adult film. At the end of the programme, when the men watched the film for the third and final time, the ones who’d quit became sexually aroused faster than the men who hadn’t.


Numerous studies have pointed to a link between smoking and erectile problems and impotence. Meanwhile, a review of US research into male impotence undertaken over a 20-year period found that 40% of men suffering from impotence were smokers, compared to 28% of non-smokers. If your partner is a smoker, this is another great reason to quit.


Smokers could be missing out on a satisfying sex life. Combine a decrease in sexual desire with impaired performance and sexual satisfaction takes a hit according to research published in the International Journal of Impotence Research. In the study, over 800 Chinese men were given a questionnaire about their sex lives. Smokers who smoked 20 cigarettes or more daily had more dissatisfaction than current smokers who smoked 20 or more daily. 

For help and advice when you quit smoking, visit the Nicotinell Support Page.

Nicotinell© Support Icemint 2mg and 4mg medicated chewing gums. Contain nicotine. Stop smoking aid. Always read the label. Requires willpower.

Job number: 343460.4/MARCH 2015

Photograph: iStock