Nicotine is more addictive than heroin and cocaine. smoking is a major cause of disease and the leading cause of preventable death. Smoking cigarettes contributes to almost 1 in 5 deaths. Quitting smoking and staying smoke-free can be a challenge, it is a process, not an event. It takes most smokers many quit attempts before they are smoke-free for life, but many people have done it successfully. There are different ways and options to help you quit smoking. The best option for you will depend on your personal preference and your medical condition.
Learn about the different methods and choose which ones might work best for you.
Quitting Cold Turkey
Giving up smoking suddenly, without any help or support, is known as quitting cold turkey. Only the most disciplined people can quit this way. studies show only about 4-7% can do it without any additional help. People who use this method rely on their own willpower to get them through the cravings and withdrawal symptoms.
If you decide to quit cold turkey , here are some tips to help you succeed
- Think about the reasons you want to quit.
- Get support from family and friends.
- Learn your triggers and come up with coping mechanisms.
- Focus on the benefits of not smoking.
- Avoid any situation that will trigger your desire to smoke.
- Make a list of activities that you can do when you are experiencing craving.
- Find new hobbies.
- Avoid temptations.
- Exercise and drink a lot of water.
Nicotine Replacement Therapy (NRT)
Nicotine replacement therapy (NRT) are licensed medicines that give you a low level of nicotine. They do not contain the other poisonous chemicals present in tobacco smoke. NRT aims to reduce the cravings and withdrawal symptoms that occur when you stop smoking. When used properly, NRT can make a big difference in helping you quit successfully.
NRT available in the pharmacies without a prescription such as Nicotine Patches, Gum, Inhalers, Lozenges, and Mouth Spray.
How does NRT work?
When you smoke it takes just seconds for nicotine to go from the lungs to the brain. The brain is filled with receptors that now being a smoker, they eagerly await incoming nicotine. When the nicotine fills the receptor, a feel-good chemical called dopamine is released, giving you a little hit or buzz. This doesn’t last long. The nicotine soon fades making the receptor eager for more. NRT provides just enough nicotine into the bloodstream without the other harmful chemicals, which help reduce your cravings and withdrawal symptoms, such as restlessness, anxiety, and lack of concentration, this will help you to focus on the emotional aspects of quitting.
Sometimes combining tow forms of NRT works better such as using the patch and mouth spray. The Patch releases nicotine slowly which gives you a steady dose of nicotine while the mouth spray releases nicotine more quickly which helps you deal with sudden cravings.
There are several available prescription medications that can help you quit smoking. These medications are not suitable for everybody, so talk to your doctor to find out which one is the best for you.
Varenicline ( Champix) is a medicine that works in 2 ways. It reduces cravings for nicotine like NRT, but it also blocks the rewarding and reinforcing effects of smoking.
Bupropion (Zyban) is a medicine originally used to treat depression, but it has since been found to help people quit smoking.
It’s not clear exactly how it works, but it’s thought to have an effect on the parts of the brain involved in addictive behaviour.
Prescription medications have side effects, you must consult with your health care provider to find out what these side-effects are and if these medications are good for you.
An e-cigarette is an electronic device that delivers nicotine in a vapour. This allows you to inhale nicotine without most of the harmful effects of smoking, as the vapour contains no tar or carbon monoxide. Using an e-cigarette can help you manage your nicotine cravings.
Vaping is a way to quit cigarettes by getting nicotine with fewer of the toxins that come from burning tobacco. You get to stay social, spend less, and once you’ve quit smoking, you’ll feel better for it. Although vaping’s much less harmful than smoking, it’s not harmless. You should plan to eventually quit vaping too, but only when you know you won’t go back to smoking.
The long-term risks of vaping are not yet clear. You should consult with your doctor before switching to E-Cigarette.
Alternative methods include Hypnotherapy, Acupuncture, and Cold Laser Therapy.
A trained hypnotist uses guided relaxation techniques to lead you into intense concentration, meditative state in which you become more open to advice and positive suggestions. The therapist makes suggestions based on your goals. many people quit smoking with the aid of hypnosis. Science shows that hypnosis is an effective way to quit smoking. Hypnosis can help you quit cigarettes by addressing the psychological aspects of your addiction and looking into your underlying motivations for smoking. Hypnosis alone may not be enough to help you quit smoking for good. But it may help to weaken your desire to smoke and reinforce other things you’re doing to quit.
A trained therapist uses very thin small needles to stimulate specific points on the body, to relieve pain and enhance health and well-being. The needles rebalance the body’s energy and prompt the body to release natural chemicals to fight the illness or symptom. Acupuncture is used as a method to quit smoking, by stimulating certain body points to reduce cravings and alleviate withdrawal symptoms. Acupuncture allows the body to reset itself and learn how to relax in the midst of a craving.
It is related to acupuncture. In this method, cold lasers are used instead of needles. Cold laser therapy uses pinpoint cold laser equipment to activate acupoints that reduce cravings. The laser treatment stimulates the nerve endings which will allow your brain to release endorphins. Endorphins help relieve pain, reduce stress, and improve your sense of well-being. Laser Therapy is one of the most popular methods for quitting smoking because it’s painless, has no side effects, quick, and effective.
Quitting smoking is considered one of the hardest bad health habits to break. But there are so many different methods and options available to help you on your journey to become a non smoker. Once you have decided to quit, consult with your doctor to help you to choose the best option for you.