- Personal Health Information & Self-Help
Smoking Relapse Tips
CONGRATULATIONS YOU'VE QUIT SMOKING!
Smoking Lecture? No Way
I'm not writing this to lecture you, or tell you all about how bad it is for your health as well as the people and pets you live with. Everyone knows by now what smoking does and how it affects everyone's health. I am only writing this to make you stop and think before you fall back into the smoking habit, and to share with you how I am coping in hopes that it will help someone else from relapsing.
Don't Light That Cigarette!
So you've quit smoking but that urge is still there. You think to yourself just a few drags won't hurt me, after all it's been three days, 3 weeks, 3 months or maybe even 3 years. I can handle it.
STOP .... right there. Think about why you quit. Think about how darn proud you are of yourself for quitting this addiction. Think of how strong you are for being able to finally give up the habit. All it takes is one drag and you'll be lured back into that smoky pit of no return.
DO NOT .... I REPEAT .... DO NOT give in to that nagging urge to light up. You may think you can handle just a few drags but trust me, you will regret it. I know I've been there. I had quit for an entire year and felt one day I really, really needed a smoke. I gave in, lit up and ..... three years later I quit again. Even though it's only been two months, I know if I ever have that one drag I'll be back at it, smoking a pack a day.
Make a List of Why You Quit Smoking
If you made a list of why you wanted to quit smoking great, get it out and have a look. If you didn't make one, get out a piece of paper and list all the reasons why you quit. Your reasons may be different than what mine were but I'll share my list with you. Chances are our reasons are very similar, if not the same. Add a second column to the list and list how quitting has made a difference in your life.
Why I Want To Quit Smoking / How I Feel Since Quitting
Reasons to Quit Smoking
Three Weeks After Giving Up Cigarettes
I am tired of coughing and hacking all the time.
The coughing has stopped.
I cannot walk up the street without getting out of breath.
I can walk farther without getting out of breath.
I cannot laugh without hacking.
I can laugh again and not cough.
The cost of cigarettes is getting ridiculous.
Smoking cost 84.00/week Nicorette gum 40.00
Every time I go somewhere I have to excuse myself to go outside to have a smoke.
Being around non-smokers has become a treat.
Tired of having to run to the store everytime I run out of smokes
So many less trips to the convenience stores.
Cannot make it through a movie at the Cineplex without having a nicotine fit.
I can now sit and enjoy an entire movie and no need to leave the theatre half way through for a smoke break.
I want the house, my hair and my clothing to smell better.
What To Do You Do When You Have That Urge To Smoke?
The following is a list of tips that work for me and hopefully will help you too.
- Make sure that you don't have any dirty ashtrays kicking around the house. Get rid of all ashtrays.
- Make it a rule that there will be no smoking in your home by anyone, and stick to your guns.
- My husband and I quit at the same time which can be very helpful. If one of us is having a hard day and an urge to smoke we call the other person and in turn talk them out of lighting up. Teaming up with a friend that has just quit can work the same way.
- I used to drink coffee all day long and light a cigarette to go along with the coffee. Rather than drink coffee now I've switched to green tea, and for some reason the tea does not make me think of cigarettes.
- Go to places that are smoke free such as libraries, restaurants, visit a sick friend in the hospital, go to a movie theatre. Just about every public place where I live is smoke free, which helps immensely.
- If drinking alcohol makes you want to smoke, avoid drinking.
- Tell people that you've quit smoking. You'll find you have a huge support system.
When the urge strikes:
- Get up and go for a walk. Good way to get in more exercise too.
- Walk into the kitchen a grab a small snack. Make it healthy though as weight gain tends to happen when you quit smoking.
- Chew gum, suck on sugarless candy, or eat celery sticks.
- Grab a bottle of water.
- Avoid people that smoke until you feel you can be around smokers and not have it bother you.
- Clean the house.
- Go weed the grass.
- Do things that normally when you smoked you couldn't smoke while doing them.
If You Do Relapse
- Set a quit date.
- Re-write or make a new list.
- Decide if you want to quit cold turkey or if you are going to try a quit smoking aid.
- Never give up trying to quit.
My dad smoked three packs a day. He started smoking when he was 20 and smoked until he retired. He had tried several times during his life to quit. Then one day he said, "I can't afford this anymore". He finally quit for good.
I've smoked most of my adult life and this is the second time that I've been serious about quitting. I am determined that I'll never smoke again.
Treatments to Help You Along The Way
Nicorette offers a wide product range of products to aid you in quitting smoking and to help you handle those nicotine cravings along the way. All of the following can be purchased without a prescription: gum, patches, lozenges, inhaler, and mouth spray. Before starting with any of these products, be sure to check with your doctor.
Zyban and Chantix, are two medication pills available through a prescription from your doctor that may help you quit smoking. Many people have had success with these. Be sure to ask your doctor about the side effects of these drugs before taking them.
Counselling and or counselling quit smoking hot lines may be another option for you to consider.
There are many Online Support Groups that you can join for free.
Get in touch with your local Cancer Society for help.
Some people have found hypnosis or laser therapy the best route to go. Others have used acupuncture.
Do You or Have You Ever Smoked?
© 2012 Susan Zutautas