Most smokers are aware of the health risks of smoking, but quitting the habit isn’t necessarily easy. The most recent estimates on smoking cessation by the NIHreveal that while 53.9% of adult smokers attempt to quit, only 8.5% succeed. This should not dissuade anyone from quitting smoking; however, quitting early can increase the likelihood of success while also avoiding the devastating effects of smoking on one’s health.Whether it’s your first attempt to quit or you’re looking for ways to better resist the urge to smoke, here are four strategies that can help with smoking cessation.
1- Look Into Yoga & Meditation
It’s common to experience withdrawal symptoms along the way because your body is used to the physical and psychological effects of smoking tobacco. You may find yourself feeling restless or irritable, especially during the first week of quitting, but yoga and meditation can be effective coping strategies.A previous article about Yoga & Pain Relieffocuses on how yoga eases temporary and chronic aches, but it can also be a way to improve mood and relieve stress. Instead of turning to cigarettes for a quick fix, yoga lowers your stress hormones while also increasing dopamine levels, which is the feel-good chemical in your brain. You can meditate while doing yoga, but praying, journaling, and listening to ambient music also serve as alternative mindfulness activities.
2- Try Nicotine Replacement Therapy
In an effort to quit smoking, people often seek electronic cigarettes as a replacement for traditional ones. But e‑cigarettes still contain harmful and addictive chemicals that only hinder the success of quitting. You can instead try nicotine replacement therapy (NRT) alternatives that are smokeless and tobacco-free products that can supply doses of nicotine into your body. Advice from Prillafor picking oral nicotine products highlights how gums, lozenges, and pouches are convenient and easy to use anytime and anywhere. They all work identically through buccal absorption, but pouches have the fastest nicotine release while also lasting the longest (up to 60 minutes). These oral products can help you satisfy cravings without negatively affecting your health and can also be combined with other slow and steady NRTs like transdermal patches.
3- Know— & Avoid— Your Triggers
Cigarette smoking is as much a psychological habit as it is a physical addiction, so you also have to know your usual triggers in order to avoid them. If you’re the type to smoke when you drink alcohol or coffee, then it might be time to cut these beverages out of your diet or only drink in places where smoking is prohibited.You can also avoid relapse or slip-ups by setting up physical or environmental distractions. For example, if you get the urge to smoke, you can instead keep yourself busy by doodling. Being aware of any specific time, place, or activity that you associate with smoking can help you succeed in stopping the habit altogether.
4- Establish a Reward System
Rewarding yourself after not smoking for a certain time period can help reinforce positive behavior and motivate you to stay on course. A Nicotine and Tobacco Research study found that smokerswere more likely to succeed in quitting after receiving financial incentives. These incentives were also associated with increased use of NRTs as cessation medication.You can establish your own reward system by only buying special goods or items after you’ve successfully curbed your urges for an entire week or month. However, rewards don’t always have to be financial. You can counteract the stress of quitting through relaxing day-to-day activities like a warm bath, a massage, or a favorite movie.
When trying out these tips, it always helps to get social support from your family and friends. A simple word of encouragement from them can go a long way, especially when you’re experiencing withdrawal. Once you’ve successfully completed your journey towards living a healthier lifestyle, consider sharing and celebrating this achievement with them.Quitting smoking is a personal experience, and every smoker quits differently. Some people quit gradually, while others stop and start many times. Others like to have support, but some prefer to quit on their own; others find success with quit-smoking medicines. You can use any method alone or in combination. There’s no right way to quit smoking.What we know is that getting support more than doubles your chances of quitting successfully. Combining counselling from a doctor, pharmacist or quitline with quit aids can increase your chances of quitting successfully.Before you decide what’s best for you, it’s helpful to know your options; from there, you can start your journey with knowledge and belief, and always remember that trying something to overcome the urge to use cigarettes is always better than doing nothing. And each time you resist a nicotine craving, remember that you’re one step closer to being tobacco-free.
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