- Education and Science
Stop Smoking Now - How to Stop Smoking
Stop Smoking Now
CIGARETTES ARE NOT YOUR FRIENDS
How to stop smoking is something many smokers wonder. Giving up cigarette smoking is the hardest thing in the world, if you don't really want to stop. You've got to really really want to, then when you have made up your mind to do it, you just stop.
Dead. Just like that. You are now an ex-smoker. That is how to stop smoking NOW.
This method works for many, but for those of us who don't have that much will-power, there are alternative methods for stopping smoking, described further down in this article.
Will-Power and Mind over Matter
What you do is set yourself a date for stopping smoking. As the date approaches, psyche yourself up for it. Tell friends and family about what you are planning to do. Remind yourself constantly of your reasons for giving up, whether that would be for your health, your pocket (tobacco is expensive), for cleaner air, so that you smell less, so that your teeth are whiter.
Day 1 is hard, but you will get through it. Keep yourself busy. Idle hands look subconsciously for that cigarette packet. Repeat the mantra I will stop smoking now.
Try to avoid drinking tea or coffee if that is your usual tipple when you have a cigarette break. Drink plain water instead, or Coco-cola or whatever you would not normally smoke with. Fresh orange juice, for example, never did taste good with a lit cigarette in your hand.
When you get the craving for a cigarette, be strong! Remind yourself why you wanted to give up; how much money you are going to save. The cravings pass within minutes, believe it or not.
They will return, again and again, throughout the time you are not smoking, but they will gradually lessen in frequency.
I know ex-smokers who gave up 30 years ago who admit to still getting the cravings.
Don't fear social events. More and more places nowadays are non-smoking, so it is the smokers who have to go outside to enjoy their puff. Not you, you can stay and enjoy a smoke-free party atmosphere.
Whatever you do, try not to get drunk if you are drinking alcohol as your ability to stay smoke free may lessen.
After maybe a month or so has passed you have a better chance of trusting yourself not to smoke under the influence.
Remember: Stop Smoking Now
It is a good idea to put the money away that you would have bought your cigarettes with, and see how quickly this mounts up.
This will also help motivate you when you feel like 'giving in'. Even after a week there will be a substantial amount of money there!
Many ex-smokers report having a troublesome and productive cough and spit after giving up cigarettes. If that happens to you, be reassured that this will pass. It is only your body, your lungs specifically, getting rid of the tar build-up the cigarettes deposited.
This expulsion process can take a year to complete, so don't despair. You will feel so much better when your lungs have returned to normal.
You can speed this process up by taking up an exercise or sport, that forces your lungs to work harder. Jogging for example. This will also give you something to do when you might previously have been relaxing in front of the television with a cigarette in your hand.
Giving up cigarettes is a life-changing experience, but once it's done you will feel so much better as well as have more money in your pocket.
It is also a good idea to ban smoking in your house, so that other smokers have to go outside to smoke. Chances are that after a few days of a smoke-free environment you will dislike the smell of smoke anyway.
Weight gain need not be a problem, but if you are one of those people who put on weight easily, does it help to know that most people who stop smoking regain their normal weight within a year?
If you take the suggestion above and take up a sport or exercise regime it is unlikely you will put on weight, but you could do - remember muscle is heavier than fat.
The excellent thing about sports activity is that you can now nibble on fattening things without worrying too much about gaining weight, as your body will burn off the fat as you exercise.
If, however, you are already overweight, or are physically disabled in some way, and find exchanging cigarettes for exercise an impossible thing to do, don't despair. Exercising is only a suggestion to help, it is not compulsory.
It is a simple fact that if you take in more calories than your body uses, you will gain weight, and the chances are that newly ex-smokers will nibble on things just for something to do with their hands and mouth. However, this is temporary. The longer you go without cigarettes, the more normal it seems to you, and you will find other things to do with your hands to keep them occupied other than eating.
This might be the time to start a new hobby like knitting or sewing that will keep your hands occupied in the evenings after work.
Stop smoking now aids at Amazon
Physical withdrawal symptoms
Typical symptoms of nicotine withdrawal include shaking, sweating, feeling that your skin is crawling, loss of concentration, and bouts of bad or short-temper.
If you do suffer from these, then don't despair, there are products on the market that will help reduce these discomforts by putting a little nicotine back into your body.
Nicotine Chewing Gum
First there is nicotine chewing gum, which not only gives your mouth something to do when it doesn't have a cigarette hanging from your lips, but puts a little nicotine into your circulation to return a little bit of that 'feelgood' factor the cigarettes used to give you.
Just like sticking plasters/band-aid you place them on your skin where a small amount of nicotine will be absorbed through to your blood vessels to replace the sudden loss of inhaled nicotine.
They can be worn under clothing, and no-one would know it was there.
The Electronic Cigarette
I've added this in here as it seems to be the new thing to help wean smokers off cigarettes. They are expensive and come with replaceable filters of nicotine, to give you the feeling that you are still smoking when you aren't.
I can't help thinking that this is the sort of thing that won't really help much because you have to break the habit of having a cigarette in your hand, especially one that you then put to your mouth and go through the motions of smoking.
This is not going to help you break that habit, and by continually adding nicotine into your system they are really just substitute cigarettes which one day you might mislay and end up back on the real thing.
Fore those reasons alone, I would not recommend them, but they may be useful for someone who is already seriously ill with a smoking-related disease as it could give them the comfort factor.
The Lack of Willpower
How Does Someone with No Willpower give up?
Zyban are not suitable for everyone, so you will need a doctor's prescription to obtain this drug, which was originally marketed as an anti-depressant. No really, it's original name was Wellbutrin and when doctors prescribed it patients started reporting back to their doctor that they had stopped smoking. They just didn't feel the compulsion to smoke. These doctors duly reported this to their pharmaceutical and medical journals.
Then scientists experimented and discovered that it did indeed stop most people from smoking, even those who hadn't intended to stop.
It was a completely accidental side-effect of a drug intended for completely different condition!
The drug was duly remarketed and aimed at smokers who didn't have the willpower to stop.
Doctors nowadays prescribe this drug as an anti-smoking aid. It is recommended you take the tablets as prescribed, and set a date for stopping round about the 10th day, by which time enough of the drug is in your system and you are probably already experiencing a lessening of your desire to smoke.
Amazingly it really does work, and is by far the easiest way to give up cigarettes. Being an anti-depressant too is an added bonus!
However, a lot of people have shown symptoms of an allergic reaction to this drug, and if you are one of these unlucky people you will have to immediately stop taking the drug and will never again be able to take it.
Signs and symptoms of this allergic reaction include itchy hives all over your body, including the inside of your mouth and the soles of your feet, developing suddenly within a few hour period, usually inside the first 10 days of starting the course.
Use of acupuncture and hypnotherapy
Hynotherapy and Acupuncture
Some people have reported very good results from stopping smoking using these methods. The idea is that you sign up for a course (which you will have to pay for) and give up smoking during the course. Choose one or the other, or them both at different times if the first one fails.
The hypnotherapist may put a suggestion into your subconscious mind that you don't like smoking, or that you are an ex-smoker. He repeats this mantra at each session and it is recommended you have a course of several sessions, not just one. This is because the human mind is such a complicated thing. Some people 'go under' hypnosis very easily, while others don't seem to go under at all.
It could be that some days your mind is more susceptible to hypnosis and it is only after the duration of a course of hypnotherapy that the the hypnotherapist can be assured that he has done his job to the best of his ability.
This treatment works very well for some people, and is always an avenue worth exploring if you are serious about giving up cigarettes but find it impossible by other means.
Acupuncture is an ancient Chinese art when pins are stuck in your body at various places that the acupuncturist knows assist other parts of the body.
I've absolutely no idea why this should work, but it does. If you are lucky enough to have an acupuncturist in your area, it might be worth giving it a go, to see if it can break your smoking addiction.
Why are cigarettes so addictive anyway?
They keep saying it's the nicotine that makes them addictive, but the cigarette manufacturers years ago were exposed for adding chemicals to make them even more addictive.
There is currently a list of over 600 additives, including formaldehyde, ammonia, hydrogen cyanide and arsenic. They even add sugar and some people believe that is to make cigarettes more attractive to the young.
So it's not just a habit, where you open a cigarette packet, withdraw one, put it your mouth, then light it and suck the smoke through your lungs and exhale again. You are in effect, taking in a combination of chemicals specifically designed to work on your brain and make you feel good.
Does it make you feel good?
Do you like that hacking cough when you lay down in bed at night? Isn't it just marvellous that you are so out of puff just climbing some stairs or walking up a steep street?
Most of the time, heavy smokers are unaware they are actually smoking yet another cigarette. It is done continually like an emotional crutch you didn't know you had.
You wouldn't know what a feelgood feeling is. You only notice how bad you feel when your crutch is taken away.
This isn't just the nicotine. It the combination of nicotine, tobacco and the other added chemicals that cigarette-manufacturers' chemists worked out would send these chemicals to your brain in the shortest possible time to hook you in and keep you hooked in.
Advise your youngsters never to smoke. If they never put that first cigarette in their mouths, they will not get so cleverly hooked in the way that the sneaky cigarette makers designed.
Their friends and peers no doubt tell them that one won't do any harm. They are WRONG. One is all it takes to start a lifetime addiction that will cost them half their wages - an addiction so strong they will do without food if they don't have the money for both.
If you are a parent, start this doctrine young, but make sure to explain to them how it works, how easily addiction sets in and takes over.
CIGARETTES ARE NOT OUR FRIENDS.