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Quit smoking for your health sake

Updated on July 15, 2009

It is not impossible to quit smoking

About 50% of the world's population is addicted to cigarettes which has become one of the biggest health hazards of humanity and the movement to quit smoking is slowly gaining ground throughout the world.The damage to the body is more severe in women than in men, the likely reason may be due to estrogen produced in women.

What happens during smoking?

During the process of smoking,a chemical compound called nicotine present in the smoke releases extra amounts of brain chemicals dopamine and norepinephrine which give you the sense of pleasure, fulfillment and satisfaction.These chemicals are produced naturally by your body through which you experience satisfaction from simple acts such as taking a cup of hot drink near the fire during extreme winter.But for a habitual smoker the body starts to depend on the nicotine to release the chemicals.Gradually the amount of nicotine requirement increases over a period of time.

Nicotine is a brain stimulant that speeds up heart beat and raises blood pressure.Nicotine also causes rise in the levels of adrenaline in the blood stream causing a sensation of thrill and satisfaction and enhancing the feel good factor.

What does nicotine cravings mean?

During the process of smoking,nicotine is absorbed in the blood and taken to the brain and over a period of time due to regular smoking,the brain gets addicted to nicotine.When the nicotine level falls in the blood,the brain is deprived of nicotine and the brain craves for nicotine by creating the urge to smoke to make up for the nicotine shortfall.This is called nicotine cravings .In short nicotine addiction is the cause of nicotine cravings .

What are the main health hazards of smoking?

Regular smoking damages lungs and might lead to bronchitis,increased susceptibility to pneumonia, influenza,heart diseases and even cancer.

Smoking affects the cholesterol level by lowering the levels good cholesterol HDLand increasing the levels of bad cholesterol LDL.

Smoking also causes nicotine deposits on teeth,gum and throat which might cause bad breath.

Smoking may also affect the bone building process which may lead to osteoporosis.

Smoking affects women by increasing the susceptibility to cervical cancer and lowering fertility.

Above mentioned health hazards should be enough to make one quit smoking for ever.

What are the withdrawal symptoms when you quit smoking

1.Prolonged irritability


3.Loss of concentration.

4.Increased food cravings for some people.

5.Headache and sleeplessness.

These symptoms last for about two weeks but peek on the third day and stabilize and gradually reduce.Once you cross the first five days your success rate improves.

What is quit smoking cold turkey method?

The phrase quit smoking cold turkey means giving up smoking in one go and facing the withdrawal symptoms boldly.

If the motivation and desire to quit smoking is stronger than the desire to smoke,this method is quick and preferable.The will power has to be extremely strong to withstand the withdrawal symptoms.The success rate for quit smoking cold turkey method is low but can be done with enough motivation.

There are other methods too and if you fail in one you can always try the other.When the urge to smoke is strong,the following breath control is guaranteed to help.

1.Close the right nostril using your finger and inhale slowly but deeply through the left nostril till you count 3 slowly.During inhalation,imagine that you are drawing in pure cosmic energy percolating to every nook and cranny of your body energizing every cell.

2.Now close both the nostrils and hold the breath till you count 12 slowly without getting uncomfortable.Imagine that you are holding the invigorating and rejuvenating energy inside your body.

3.Close the left nostril and exhale through the right nostril slowly till you count 6.While exhaling,imagine that you are flushing out all the impurities and negative thoughts.

4.Start the process again by closing the left nostril and inhaling through the right nostril till you count 3 as mentioned in para 1.

5.Retain the inhaled air till you count 12 without feeling uncomfortable as
mentioned in para 2.

6.Now close the right nostril and exhale slowly and completely through the left nostril till you count 6.

These six steps constitute one breath cycle.Begin by doing it 6 times in the morning and 6 times in the evening and you can increase the number gradually to 20 each session.

The point to remember is that whenever you inhale you should imagine that your are inhaling the positive and pure energies and thoughts of the cosmos and when ever you exhale imagine that you are flushing out the impurities and negative energies and thoughts out of your body.If this breath control exercise is done regularly and sincerely,you will see the results within a week guaranteed.

The benefits of this breath control are,

1.Increased energy flow in the body.

2.It cheers you up and calms down your mind.

3.Blows out all the impurities negative energies and thoughts and does the inner cleansing.

4.Helps you develop a positive approach to life.

What are the other methods to quit smoking ?

1.Screen yourself for depression since smoking acts as self medication for depression,anxiety and stress.

2.Join a smoking cessation support group.When you see others like you trying to quit smoking,it strengthens your resolve to succeed.

3.Avoid friends who smoke and places like bars and parties where the inducement to smoke is high.

4.Try the alternative medicines such as acupuncture and hypnosis.

5.Consult your doctor for over the counter drugs in the form of patches and pills or capsules to cope with the withdrawal symptoms.


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    • Lady_E profile image

      Elena 8 years ago from London, UK

      Nice, educative Hub. What tickles me is that its written on boxes of cigarettes that "smoking is bad for health". In my area, the government has actually banned smoking in public places. So, now you can't smoke in a rail station, shopping centre, restaurant etc.

      Hope all is well in India. Give my regards to Amitabh Bachchan. :)