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How does smoking affect chronic pain?

Smoking may affect your level of chronic pain and may also affect how well your treatment of chronic pain works. Smoking can increase your sensitivity to pain. In addition, smoking can constrict blood vessels and impair blood flow to tissues that may need nutrients and oxygen, thus slowing healing and repair of damaged tissues and also increasing pain symptoms. 

Smoking and chronic pain are a bad mix. Smoking makes chronic pain worse and can make it hard to do everyday tasks. According to one study, folks with chronic pain who smoked had more problems on the job, in their relationships and with their sleep, mood and overall quality of life compared to nonsmoking chronic pain sufferers.

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Important: This content reflects information from various individuals and organizations and may offer alternative or opposing points of view. It should not be used for medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. As always, you should consult with your healthcare provider about your specific health needs.