Cigarette smoking is a dangerously addictive habit. The health hazards related to cigarette smoking are numerous and include the increased risk of heart attack, stroke, and cancer. Despite the well-known health risks related to smoking, quitting can be very difficult for most individuals. Read on for tips and advice concerning how to quit smoking.
The first step in quitting smoking is making a firm commitment. If you want to succeed at kicking the tobacco habit you need to set a date to stop and stick to it. Decide why you want to stop. Make a list of all the reasons you should quit. Making a list may seem unnecessary, but if you are caught in the throes of withdrawal symptoms, looking at your list may help to renew a potentially faltering commitment.
On your chosen quitting date throw away all your cigarettes, ashtrays, lighters, and any other smoking related paraphernalia. Clean your bedding, clothing, house, and your car to get rid of the tobacco smell. Be sure to shower and wash your hair as well. The smell of cigarette smoke lingers in furniture and clothing so you may need to do a thorough cleaning job and leave your windows open for as long as possible to let fresh air in.
Notify your friends, associates, and family of your intent to quit. Ask them to support you by not smoking around you, putting their cigarettes away in your presence, and not offering you cigarettes. To reduce temptation, do not allow others to smoke in your home or car.
Do not smoke at all, not even one cigarette. It will be much harder for you to quit if you allow yourself to cheat here and there. Try to find other activities to engage in to distract yourself from wanting to smoke. Talk to a friend, take a walk, read a good book, go jogging, or get busy with an interesting new activity.
Consider nicotine replacement therapy. Nicotine is a highly addictive drug found in tobacco. Smokers must overcome both physical and psychological dependence on nicotine in order to successfully quit smoking. There are many products on the market that deliver a small amount of nicotine to help reduce the urge to smoke.
Nicotine replacement products are available over the counter in the form of patches, gums, and lozenges. Nicotine replacement nasal sprays and inhalers require a prescription. A medication called Bupropion, also available only by prescription can be helpful when quitting smoking as well. Some individuals should not use nicotine replacement products because of certain medical conditions. It is wise to check with your doctor first.
There are withdrawal symptoms associated with quitting smoking, which can include weight gain and depression. Eat healthy and exercise to help combat weight gain. Remember your goal and do not allow gaining a few extra pounds to distract you from it. Remember, continuing to smoke is far more dangerous to your health than gaining a little weight.
Try some different ways of improving your mood and relieving tension such as exercise, meditation, deep breathing, and prayer. Check your local library, bookstore, or newspaper to find listings for stress-management classes and support groups.
For more advice and help for quitting smoking talk to your doctor. He or she should be able to refer you to organizations that provide information, support, and counseling for individuals trying to kick the cigarette habit. Your local hospital or department of health can also provide valuable resources.
Most of all, when quitting smoking, it is important to remember you are only human. If you have a relapse and smoke a cigarette do not waste time berating yourself. Instead, quit again. Never give up!