How To Quit Smoking
Whether you’re a teen smoker or a lifetime pack–a–day smoker, quitting can be tough. But the more you learn about your options and prepare for quitting, the easier the process will be. With the right game plan tailored to your needs, you can break the addiction, manage your cravings, and join the millions of people who have kicked the habit for good.
Why quitting smoking can seem so hard
Smoking tobacco is both a physical addiction and a psychological habit. The nicotine from cigarettes provides a temporary, and addictive, high. Eliminating that regular fix of nicotine will cause your body to experience physical withdrawal symptoms and cravings. Because of nicotine’s “feel good” effect on the brain, you may also have become accustomed to smoking as a way of coping with stress, depression, anxiety, or even boredom.
At the same time, the act of smoking is ingrained as a daily ritual. It may be an automatic response for you to smoke a cigarette with your morning coffee, while taking a break from work or school, or during your commute home at the end of a long day. Perhaps friends, family members, and colleagues smoke, and it has become part of the way you relate with them.
To successfully quit smoking, you’ll need to address both the addiction and the habits and routines that go along with it.
Your Personal Stop Smoking Plan
While some smokers successfully quit by going cold turkey, most people do better with a plan to keep themselves on track. A good plan addresses both the short–term challenge of quitting smoking and the long–term challenge of preventing relapse. It should also be tailored to your specific needs and smoking habits.
Questions to ask yourself
Take the time to think of what kind of smoker you are, which moments of your life call for a cigarette, and why. This will help you to identify which tips, techniques or therapies may be most beneficial for you.
* Are you more of a social smoker?
* Is it a very bad addiction (more than a pack a day)? Or would a simple nicotine patch do the job?
* Do you reach for cigarettes when you're feeling stressed or down?
* Are there certain activities, places, or people you associate with smoking?
* Is your cigarette smoking linked to other addictions, such as alcohol or gambling?
* Are you open to hypnotherapy and/or acupuncture?
* Are you someone who is open to talking about your addiction with a therapist or counselor?
* Are you interested in getting into a fitness program?