Smoking is a difficult habit to break, but it’s not impossible. Millions of people have successfully quit smoking, and so can you. The key is understanding what makes smoking addictive and learning about the different ways to quit. So here is all the information you need to make an informed decision about quitting smoking for good.
Consider Alternatives to Smoking
Smoking tobacco is not the only way to get nicotine. Nicotine replacement therapy (NRT) products can provide you with a dose of nicotine without all the harmful chemicals in tobacco smoke. These products are available as gum, lozenges, patches, inhalers, and nasal sprays. They work by delivering small doses of nicotine to your body to help reduce withdrawal symptoms and cravings. You can also find STLTH vape devices online that will help you wean off cigarettes. There are also prescription medications, explained in more detail later, that can help you quit smoking. Bupropion (Zyban) and varenicline (Chantix) are two examples of medications that are effective in helping people quit smoking.
Make a Plan to Quit Smoking
Quitting smoking is hard, but it’s easier if you have a plan. Decide when you’re going to quit and stick to it. Choose a date within the next two weeks. On that day, throw away all your cigarettes and ashtrays. If you use an e-cigarette, empty it and don’t refill it. Once you’ve decided to quit, you’re more likely to succeed if you tell friends and family about your plan. They can support you by not smoking around you and helping you resist temptation. Of course, most people find it difficult to quit smoking on their own, so you may want to consider getting help from a professional.
Prepare for Withdrawal Symptoms
Nicotine withdrawal is different for everyone, but most people experience some combination of the following symptoms:
- Irritability: Irritability during withdrawal is explained as feeling “hangry”. You may find yourself feeling short-tempered and snappy for no reason.
- Anxiety: Anxiety is a common symptom of nicotine withdrawal. You may feel on edge, nervous, or even panicked. These feelings are usually the most intense in the first week after quitting smoking.
- Restlessness: You may find it hard to concentrate or sit still. You may also feel fidgety and unable to relax.
- Depression: Feelings of sadness and emptiness are common during nicotine withdrawal. These feelings usually peak in the first week after quitting and then gradually improve.
- Insomnia: Many people have trouble sleeping when they’re trying to quit smoking. This is because nicotine is a stimulant and can make it hard to fall asleep.
- Cravings: Cravings for cigarettes are often the most intense in the first few days after quitting, but they usually lessen over time.
These symptoms are usually the strongest in the first week after you quit smoking and gradually subside over time. If you’re not persistent during this period, these symptoms might be a cause of relapse. You can help ease withdrawal symptoms by participating in activities that distract you from your cravings, such as exercise, hobbies, or social events. Some people also find it helpful to eat healthy snacks and drink plenty of water to stay hydrated. If your withdrawal symptoms are severe, you may want to consider using nicotine replacement therapy or medications to help you through the first few weeks.
Set Yourself Up for Success
There are a few things you can do to increase your chances of success when quitting smoking. First, it’s important to understand your smoking triggers and avoid them if possible. A trigger is anything that makes you want to smoke, such as drinking coffee or alcohol, being around other smokers, or feeling stressed. If you can’t avoid your triggers, try to come up with a plan for how you will deal with them without smoking. For example, if you usually have a cigarette with your morning coffee, try drinking tea instead. Or if you smoke when you’re feeling stressed, try taking a walk or talking to a friend instead.
- It’s also important to have a support system in place to help you through tough times. Friends and family can be a great source of support, but you may also want to consider joining a smoking cessation program or using a quitline. These programs can provide you with resources and support to help you quit smoking for good.
Use Medications to Help You Quit Smoking
Several medications are effective in helping people quit smoking. Nicotine replacement therapy (NRT) is one option that can help reduce withdrawal symptoms and cravings. NRT comes in the form of patches, gum, lozenges, inhalers, and nasal sprays. These products provide you with a small amount of nicotine to help ease withdrawal symptoms without the harmful chemicals found in cigarettes.
- Several prescription medications have been approved for smoking cessation. Bupropion and varenicline are two medications that are effective in helping people quit smoking. These medications work by blocking the effects of nicotine or reducing cravings. If you’re interested in trying medication to help you quit, talk to your doctor about which option may be right for you.
Make Yourself Hate Cigarettes
One of the best things you can do to increase your chances of success is to make yourself hate cigarettes. Cigarettes are expensive, they’re smelly, and they’re dangerous to your health. Keep this in mind every time you have a craving. Remind yourself that cigarettes are not worth the hassle or the risk to your health. Think about all the reasons you want to quit smoking and use them as motivation to stay smoke-free. When you’re feeling tempted, remember that you’re in control of your own destiny. You can choose to be a nonsmoker. It may not be easy, but it will be worth it in the end.
Quitting smoking is not easy, but it is possible. Withdrawal symptoms and cravings can make it tough to stick to your quit plan, but there are things you can do to make it easier. Understanding your triggers and avoiding them, having a strong support system, and using medications can help increase your chances of success. And making yourself hate cigarettes can also be a helpful motivator.