8 Steps On How To Stop Smoking For Good

8 Ways To Stop Smoking For Good

STOP SMOKING – If you want to become a better version of yourself this year, these eight (8) helpful tips can help break your smoking habit.

Research indicates that over 70% of smokers express a desire to quit, yet not everyone achieves success in doing so. A significant contributing factor to this is inadequate preparation for quitting.

Whether you’re interested in learning about abruptly quitting smoking or adopting a more gradual approach, we’re here to help. These practical suggestions will enable you to embark on the right path toward your goal of breaking free from cigarettes in 2023.

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Examine your current smoking habits

Once you’ve made the decision to quit smoking, it’s advisable to develop a plan that you can commit to. This starts with scrutinizing your smoking habits and strategizing how to alter them.

  • Increasing Awareness of Your Smoking Volume: Before attempting to cut back, comprehending your current smoking frequency is crucial. It’s possible that your consumption is higher than you realize. Keep track of the number of cigarettes you smoke daily and document this figure.
  • Identifying the Underlying Triggers: There are underlying reasons behind your tobacco use, and the subsequent phase of your journey involves comprehending them. Although your habit might seem to lack rationale now, it likely originated from certain motives. Reflect on why you initially started smoking and why you continue to turn to it throughout the day. Document your reasons each time you feel the urge to smoke.
  • Reflecting on Your Motivation to Quit: Having a compelling reason can fortify your determination to overcome tobacco addiction. Whether it’s for health reasons, your children’s well-being, or another factor, pinpoint why you genuinely want to quit smoking—beyond the mere act of quitting. Although commencing the process solely for the sake of quitting is commendable, visualizing a tangible incentive during challenging moments can provide the necessary impetus to persevere.

Learn how smoking affects your body

Smoking and tobacco consumption can exert profoundly adverse effects on your well-being. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) underscores that smoking can lead to cancer, heart disease, stroke, lung disorders, diabetes, and chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD), encompassing emphysema and chronic bronchitis. Furthermore, smoking heightens the risk of tuberculosis, certain eye ailments, and immune system issues like rheumatoid arthritis. These physical concerns can also trigger mental health problems, compounded by the stress of managing a medical condition.

Research demonstrates that smoking at night can contribute to insomnia, with poor sleep quality potentially leading to conditions such as obesity and cardiac ailments. The CDC also underscores the harm caused by secondhand smoke, which is responsible for approximately 400 infant deaths annually.

Set A Goal

Setting goals can sustain your motivation. In addition to the overarching goal of quitting smoking, establish smaller milestones to achieve along the way. For instance, you might begin by refraining from smoking for a single day. Over the course of a month, commit to abstaining from smoking on weekends. Upon successfully completing the month, reward yourself and proceed to the next objective. This approach is more manageable than quitting abruptly (although the cold turkey method works for some individuals).

Try nicotine replacement therapy

Nicotine replacement therapy, including options like nicotine patches or gum, can help alleviate nicotine cravings. Numerous studies affirm the efficacy of these low-dose nicotine interventions in aiding smoking cessation. If you’re considering nicotine replacement therapy, consulting your healthcare provider to determine the most suitable product is a prudent step.

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Consider prescription pills

Consider discussing prescription medication options with your healthcare provider to aid in your smoking cessation efforts. Chantix and Zyban are two commonly prescribed medications for quitting smoking that you can talk to your doctor about. Pfizer has shared research demonstrating the effectiveness of Chantix, with multiple studies indicating that over 40% of participants successfully refrained from smoking while using the medication.

Create a support system

During the undoubtedly challenging period of quitting smoking, surrounding yourself with a supportive network can contribute not only to your success but also to your sustained motivation. When you encounter moments of wanting to give in, these individuals can provide the encouragement you need to persevere.

  • Inform Friends and Family of Your Goals: Share your goals with your trusted circle of supporters, omitting those who might not be supportive. Clearly communicate your goals and inform them of the ways they can assist you. Whether it’s refraining from smoking around you, offering words of encouragement, or providing silent support, let them know your preferences.
  • Create your community: It’s equally crucial to connect with individuals who are currently undergoing a similar journey or have done so in the past, as they can understand your experiences better than anyone else. Online communities and in-person groups like Nicotine Anonymous and Smokers Anonymous can be valuable resources.
  • Seek Professional Assistance: Rely on your doctor or therapist for guidance and support throughout your smoking cessation journey. They can offer additional resources and medically backed reasons for quitting. Moreover, they can help you recognize the positive changes occurring in your physical and mental health as you gradually reduce smoking, which can serve as a source of motivation.

Prepare for Potential Side Effects

Withdrawal symptoms are common among individuals quitting smoking. The CDC notes that when tapering off tobacco, you might experience irritability, restlessness, increased hunger, feelings of depression and sadness, difficulty sleeping, and some weight gain. While these symptoms are typical, it’s advisable to consult your doctor about any unusual sensations.

The CDC also recommends incorporating exercise to address restlessness and anxiety. Physical activity can elevate your heart rate and stimulate the release of endorphins, which can enhance your mood. Additionally, exercise offers a positive outlet for channeling negative side effects.

Celebrate your wins

While celebrating the achievement of your main goal is important, don’t overlook the significance of acknowledging smaller milestones along the way. Whether it’s your first day without smoking or completing a week smoke-free, treat yourself to rewards. Indulge in a nice meal, enjoy some ice cream, pamper yourself with a spa day, or splurge on a pair of shoes you’ve had your eye on. Create a list of rewards to incentivize your progress from the start, ensuring you have clear targets to work toward.

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