Did you know that cigarette smoking does considerable damage to your lungs, liver, and virtually every organ in your body? Quitting the habit reduces your chances of developing smoking-related diseases like cancer, heart disease, stroke, and tuberculosis.
Smoking is one of the world’s leading causes of cancer. The long-term habit causes cancer in the mouth, throat, oesophagus, larynx, pancreas, bladder, and rectum. Making a decision to quit the habit today will increase your life span. If you are diagnosed with cancer, quitting smoking will improve your responsiveness to chemotherapy and other medications.
Ways to Quit Smoking
If you plan to take action to stop the habit today, here are some actionable steps you can try today.
Nicotine Replacement Therapy
Nicotine replacement therapy is one of the proven and effective ways of quitting smoking. There are various treatments available for this therapy, and common treatments include chewing gums, patches, and lozenges. Nasal sprays and inhalers are available by the prescription of a doctor. It is very easy to get the gums, patches, and lozenges as they are sold over the counter in most pharmacies.
Once you have made up your mind that you’re going to quit, you can set aside some tangible amount of money and invest in these items. However, keep in mind your body is still nicotine dependent, and sometimes, nicotine replacement therapy may not work for you.
Discuss with a doctor is suitable for you.
Go Cold Turkey
Wake up one morning and decide to quit. Fight the urge as much as you can and do not give into your cravings. When going cold turkey, you do not depend on any form of medication but trust solely in your willpower.
During this time, your body will go through a withdrawal phase, and it is expected that you will experience a rollercoaster of emotions; irritation, anger, or sadness. During this time, try your best to fight the urge to lash out at your loved ones or withdraw into a dark room.
This method may sound easy to nonsmokers but to smokers, it’s a battle of want and willpower. For people who choose this alternative, keep in mind that success rates are low.
Go for Counselling
If you smoke because of emotional stress, talking to a counsellor puts you on the right path to quitting this habit. Additionally, talking to someone who is not a family member can give you vital insights on how to tackle your problems from the root. From there, you can start your recovery on the right path to quitting the habit entirely.
Satisfy Cravings with Something Else
Whenever you get the urge to grab a smoke, try to delay the urge and find something to distract you. One alternative is to grab a piece of chewing gum or candy until the urge disappears.
Making Your Smoke-free Journey Smooth
Quitting is a hard task and here are ways to make it go as smoothly as possible:
Once you have made a decision to stop smoking, throw away anything that reminds you of the habit. Toss that pack of cigarette in the bin and leave those smoking friends of yours behind. Avoid hanging out in places that support smoking.
Physically activeness helps take your mind off the hazardous habit. Get involved in sports to keep your mind and body off it. Additionally, sports can help you get into a healthy habit of exercising and being around positively-minded people.
Be proud of small progress. If you stayed two hours without reaching for a cigarette, treat yourself to something such as a healthy snack. Do not be too harsh on yourself when you do not meet your expectations.
Remember that habits are easy to form but hard to stop and always have a positive mind. There will bumps along the road, there will be days you give in to your cravings, and there will be days you just want to quit altogether.
Create a quitting schedule and aim for small victories first. Try going an hour without smoking before reaching for 12 hours, then 24 hours.
The support of close friends and family makes the journey worthwhile. Do not isolate yourself from them but ask for help when needed. Family is the best support system you have.
Quitting smoking is not an easy task for heavy-handed smokers due to a person’s high nicotine dependency. However, there is always a way out. For people who choose to quit today, but not tomorrow, the choice is already a step in the right path. By quitting the habit, you’re making a positive change.