If you are ready to kick off the habit of smoking, it’s really good news! Making a firm commitment for quitting smoking is like winning a half battle. We know that it is not an easy task for you but if you choose the best way to quit smoking and stick to your quit plan then it helps in achieving the desired results. Remember, that it becomes quite difficult to quit this addiction without a proper plan and professional smoking cessation counseling program. So, here’s what you need to know about smoking cessation as we have complied complete guidelines of quitting smoking:
1- Have a plan by choosing the best method to quit smoking:
There are different ways for smoking cessation, some methods work best than others. The most important thing is to stick with one method that you choose. Some of these methods include:
Cold turkey method (no outside help): Almost 90 percent of people try to quit this addiction without getting any support – no aids, medicines, therapy – from outside. Although most of the people want to quit this way, it is not an effective method of quitting and so only 4-7 percent of these people are able to get rid of this addiction on their own.
Behavioral therapy: In this therapy, you will work with a counselor in order to find out ways for smoking cessation. It involves finding your triggers – the things, emotions, situations that make you smoke – and devise a plan to avoid these triggers.
Nicotine replacement therapy (NRT): The nicotine in tobacco actually leads to the physical dependency due to which you experience unpleasant withdrawal symptoms when you try to quit. In nicotine replacement therapy, you will be given nicotine in the form of patches, gum, sprays, lozenges or inhalers without the use of harmful tobacco. NRT helps to relieve the physical withdrawal symptoms so that you can fully focus on psychological aspects of quitting the addiction. You will more likely to quit smoking when you get NRT in combination with behavioral therapy along with a strong support of family members and friends. Most of the people can quit using tobacco but the main goal is to quit nicotine along with tobacco.
Medications: Bupropion (Zyban) and varenicline (Chantix) are common medications that help to relieve the symptoms from withdrawals. These should be taken with doctor’s prescription.
Combo treatments: The use of a combination of different treatment methods can increase the chances of smoking cessation. For example, taking both a nicotine patch with gum is better than using the patch alone. Some other combo treatment options are nicotine replacement therapy and behavioral therapy, prescription medicine with NRT patch and both a nicotine replacement therapy spray with a patch. The FDA isn’t approved of using two nicotine replacement therapies at the same time so be sure to talk with the doctor whether it is the right option for you.
No matter which of these given methods you choose, the most important thing is to build a quit plan that works best for you. You can pick a quit date as it gives you ample time to prepare without losing commitment. Tell your family and friends that you have decided to quit and get rid of all the cigarettes and ashtrays from your home, car, and workplace. Work hard with the help of a counselor to find your triggers and decide how to manage them.
2- Stay on the track towards quitting smoking:
You will face those days when you want to give up all your cravings but don’t do it. Once you have started to act upon the quit plan then follow it strictly until you completely quit smoking. Here are some steps that you can follow to keep yourself on track to living a smoke-free life:
Know your triggers and avoid them: Make a list of your triggers and try to manage each situation and avoid those conditions that make you smoke. Strictly follow this approach in first three months because you’re most likely to start smoking again during this time period.
Know about first few toughest days and learn to manage them: You will feel depressed, irritable, slow, tired in first few days after you start working on your quit plan. This mostly happens when you are quitting with cold turkey method but you can take help from smoking support groups or may be your friend. Once these initial days have passed, you will begin to feel better and normal.
Don’t give in to cravings: The chances of your quitting go up whenever you don’t smoke when you have a desire.
Try out new hobby with your friends who don’t smoke: Do any activity or something that keeps your hands active and reduces your stress e.g. walking your dog with a company of those friends who don’t smoke. This greatly helps you to achieve success.
Reward yourself: We know that what you are going to achieve isn’t easy. When you strike milestones from your quit plan, treat yourself as if you have achieved something that you truly want.
3- Focus on the benefits of stopping smoking:
Quitting smoking will be hard for each individual who wants to stop this addiction. How hard it will be for each individual depends on certain factors, such as a number of cigarettes he/she smokes daily, whether family or friends also smoke and the reason behind smoking.
Whether it will be hard for you or not, you should focus on sticking to your plan and consider various health benefits that you will get on stopping smoking. Within few hours of quitting, your body recovers itself from the harmful effects of nicotine and other additives. Your heart rate, blood pressure, and body temperature returns to healthier levels. You will be able to breathe more easily and feel more energetic. It improves taste and smell while improving looks and giving more younger-looking skin. Being a non-smoker, you can have a long healthy life to live.
4- What to do if you start smoking again?
The phase of start smoking again is called a relapse which happens to a lot of people who want to kick off the addiction for good. If you do relapse then try to smoke as little as possible until you are ready to quit again. Remember, that stopping smoking is the process that takes much time but it is so much valuable as it completely changes your life.
For smoking cessation program and professional counseling, contact Island Medical Consultants in NYC:
So, if you have decided to quit smoking then you can contact specialists at Island Medical Consultants in Staten Island, NYC. The board-certified physicians, experienced and accomplished specialists offer comprehensive smoking cessation programs in NYC and professional counseling while tailoring a customized quitting plan for you depending on your individual conditions and needs. So, you can get all the support right from choosing the appropriate method for quitting smoking to adopting best ways keeping on the track, at Island Medical Consultants that helps you to live a healthy longer life.