Quitting smoking can be difficult, but with the right resources; you could quit for good! Smoking can be a detriment to your health and the health of those around you. By quitting smoking, you will save money to do more things you enjoy in life and you could save on health insurance as well.
Check out these tips for becoming smoke-free, and share them with family members, friends or co-workers who are thinking about quitting.
1. Eliminate triggers
Do a thorough cleaning of your house and car to remove cigarettes, ashtrays, smoke odors and other reminders of smoking. If you live with someone who smokes and is not quitting at this time, make a plan so you’re not tempted. Ask them not to smoke in front of you and to smoke outside.
2. Give it Time
The desire to smoke won’t disappear overnight. The first 7 to 10 days will be the hardest. You may still have cravings for months to years after quitting, know that this is normal. These urges will occur less over time and will eventually stop.
Remind yourself of all the good reasons why you decided to quit. Be patient with yourself and keep moving forward.
3. Distract Yourself
When a craving to smoke happens it will only lasts 3 to 5 minutes. Call a friend, get a drink of water, do some deep breathing or play a game on your phone. Find something to distract your mind so you can make it through those few minutes.
4. Break your Routine
Your schedule may have had built in smoke breaks and cravings can happen during those times. Know when these times are and what your triggers are, then make a plan to avoid them. For example, if you have a cigarette with your morning coffee- change up the order of your morning routine or add in new things to your daily routine like; go for walk, go to the gym or have your coffee in a different location.
5. Be patient with yourself
You are learning what works for you when it comes to quitting. Avoid self-blame or feelings of guilt. If you do start smoking again, don’t think of that as a failure. Aim to figure out what led to your relapse and plan on what to do differently next time.
6. Keep Trying
Every smoker can quit. It may take some time or a few practice quits, but you can break this addiction with the right help. Keep trying until you find the right combination of techniques for you.
If you need support along the way, call the toll-free Lung HelpLine at 1-800-LUNGUSA to speak with a certified smoking cessation counselor. The American Lung Association also offers Freedom From Smoking in-person clinics and online support, with proven-effective quit smoking strategies.