Smoking is a menace, responsible for a number of fatal diseases including cardiovascular diseases, respiratory diseases, and cancer. According to Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), cigarette smoking contributes to over 440,000 deaths every year in the United States.
Though most of the smokers are aware of the harmful implications of smoking, they find it hard to quit. The nicotine in cigarettes is primarily responsible for making smoking addictive. Also smokers draw psychological comfort from smoking, especially when they are tensed or stressed, which enhances their dependency on cigarette smoking.
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In this article, we suggest some effective ways that can help you get rid of this dangerous habit.
1. List the 'whys'
Make a list of the reasons for which you want to quit smoking. Your list may include reasons such your personal health and your family's health (passive smoking is just as dangerous).
Once you are sure about your decision of quitting smoking, keep this list of reasons at a place or places where it catches your eye regularly. You can paste it on the refrigerator, pin in at your workstation or even place it on your washroom's wall. It will give you strength and boost your will power.
2. Deal with the cravings
Smokers have some particular triggers of cravings including stress or tension, restlessness, idleness, post-meal craving and so on. You can deal with your cravings with the following ways:
Delay the response
You can start with delaying the response to your cravings, initially by 5-10 minutes. Gradually, you can practice it to even skip a smoking trigger.
You can also try and distract yourself from the craving. Spend the time with your family, enjoy some game with your children, have a cup of coffee with your wife, or watch your favorite movie. Do what you love and consciously avoid picking up the cigarette.
Alternatives to smoking
If all these ways fail to control your craving for a cigarette, try different alternatives to cigarette such as e-hookah or rechargeable e-cigarette or other nicotine-free or low-nicotine products. These less-harmful products can help in controlling the withdrawal symptoms.
3. Exercise regularly
Regular exercising helps in reducing stress which is a powerful trigger for smoking. Exercise keeps you fit, strengthens your immune system and increases your resistance power to the urge to smoke.
4. Avoid the company of smokers
Temptations are hard to resist. Avoid the company of smokers. Being amid smokers will make you feel tempted and you will end up lighting that “one-last-cigarette”. Make sure you stay away from the company of smokers up till you are strong enough to turn down the offer of a puff.
5. Consider joining support groups
You can also seek help of a support group to get rid of evil of this ruinous habit. Here you will get to meet people who want to quit smoking. It's always beneficial to interact with people with same interests as you can motivate each other to achieve a common objective.
You may try hundreds of ways to stay away from smoking but nothing would work until you are really positive about it. Will power is the strongest force towards helping you quit smoking. Believe you can and you will quit it. You will have to fight withdrawal symptoms and strong cravings and you will require a lot of will power to deal with it.