Let's face it, quitting smoking isn't the easiest thing on the planet. Guest contributor Lindsay Fox shares a few tips on how you can do just that.
There isn’t a soul on this planet that isn’t aware of the harmful effects of cigarette smoking on not just their own health, but also on that of those around them. Yet, the addiction is tough to beat. The reason why quitting smoking is hard is because smoking can become much more than just a physical addiction. It can become a habit that your body and mind get used to and have difficulty functioning without. It is important to keep trying to quit smoking until you’re finally successful in doing so completely. If you’ve tried and haven’t been able to go all the way, take heart because you’re not alone. Smokers try several times to get rid of their addiction. The key is not to stop trying, but to stop smoking!
1. Figure out What Works for You
Different things work for different people. What helped your friend quit smoking might not necessarily help you. You can try your own techniques. For example, you might want to try replacing your addiction with a hobby that diverts your attention from the thought of taking a drag. If you feel absolutely ready to quit smoking, you could try stopping suddenly and completely. If that doesn’t seem feasible, try reducing the number of cigarettes you smoke every day gradually and then stop.
2. Set a Deadline
Setting a deadline to finally quit smoking for good may work as a good motivator for you to double your efforts. As the date nears, you will find yourself coming up with different ways and reasons not to smoke. The urge to smoke may also start to fade away with time. Stick to the set date without postponing it. Try and make it sooner than later.
3. Keep Cigarettes at Bay
It is advisable to get rid of all the cigarettes, ashtrays, lighters and anything that is associated with smoking in order to avoid succumbing to the temptation. If your home smells of cigarette smoke, spray a floral or fruity air freshener to make it smell pleasant. Similarly, wash your clothes, upholstery, and car covers with a fragrant fabric cleaner to remove all traces of smoke odor.
4. Try Smoking Cessation Methods
Nicotine replacement therapy, such as using nicotine patches or chewing gum, could be good alternatives for those who smoke heavily or who feel they may need extra help busting the addiction. Oral prescription medicines containing varenicline can help you quit by reducing withdrawal symptoms and the desire to smoke. Talk to your doctor about what would be best for you.
Apart from these, you might want to give e-cigarettes a try. These are electronic cigarettes that look just like tobacco cigarettes but instead of emitting harmful smoke, they emit vapor, which makes them a comparatively safer option to conventional cigarettes. They come in various flavors and unlike their tobacco counterparts, do not result in second-hand smoking, making them good substitutes to regular cigarettes. You can switch to these and minimize harm to yourself until you stop smoking completely. You can learn more about them at ecigarettereviewed.com
5. Stay Away
If you’re planning to attend a party or a social event where you feel you may be exposed to cigarettes, try to skip it. It is crucial that you make a conscious effort to avoid being in situations that will make it difficult for you to control your impulse to smoke, especially during the initial stages of trying to quit. When you visit restaurants or cafes, sit in the non-smoker area.
6. Cut down on Coffee
If you’re a heavy smoker, chances are you’re a heavy coffee drinker too. If that’s the case, you might want to cut down on your coffee intake as retention of caffeine is higher in the absence of nicotine in your system. Apart from coffee, you will also need to avoid alcohol consumption as it might bring your guard down and make it harder for you to resist smoking.
7. Cough It up
Typically, when smokers stop smoking, their cough tends to get worse. This phenomenon tempts many people to go back to smoking. You need to, however, resist this temptation at all costs. Rest assured that the cough is temporary and will ease gradually.
8. Expect Withdrawal Symptoms
Due to smoking, your body gets used to certain levels of nicotine in your system. When you stop smoking, the levels reduce and withdrawal symptoms like headaches, nausea, anxiety, irritability, cravings, etc. crop up. They tend to peak after 12 to 24 hours, but will gradually phase out over 2-4 weeks. So keep calm and quit smoking!
9. Take Support of Your Loved Ones
Tell your family and friends that you’ve decided to quit smoking and you need their help and support in achieving this objective. If any of your family or friends smoke, ask them to avoid it around you as it might make it difficult for you to stay away. In fact, get them to try and quit along with you. Having someone go through the same phases as you might actually work as you can keep each other motivated. You can also talk and share your feelings and tribulations to make the process easier.
10. Stay Positive
Take a cue from the opening sentence of this post and stay positive and sincere in your efforts and intentions. Keep trying until you succeed.
Keep reminding yourself that your quitting smoking would benefit not just you but also your family. Even if you relapse, learn from your mistakes and continue in your endeavor. Have you been successful in your attempt to quit smoking? Share your tips below!