How to Stop Smoking
To answer the question how to stop smoking, it is important to understand two things:
- Why do you want to stop smoking?
- What causes you to smoke?
The best "how to stop smoking" tip is keeping yourself motivated to not smoke. Maybe your family wants you to quit, maybe you want to live a healthier lifestyle, or maybe you are tired of spending the equivalent of a car payment each month on cigarettes. Regardless of the reasons, it is important that you never lose focus on why you want to stop smoking.
The second best "how to stop smoking" tip is to understand what causes you to smoke. For most smokers, they need to understand that there are two basic causes. First, smoking is a physical addiction. The brain actually craves the feelings of pleasure and calm that the nicotine in cigarettes provides. Second, smoking is a habit. By understanding this, you can select the best tips on how to quit smoking that will work for you.
Before going on, it is important that you understand the worst way to stop smoking is to try and quit overnight. Commonly referred to as quitting cold turkey, for every 20 people that try this method, only one or two will be cigarette free in three months.
How to Stop Smoking by Breaking the Habit
The best ways to break your smoking habit are going to be those ways that work best for you. Here are a few simple how to stop smoking tips that are free and simple to follow:
- Motivate yourself. Remember why you have decided to quit. Post these in places to remind you why are you want to break the habit. Post these in places where you are tempted to smoke.
- Set a goal in the future. Since quitting cold turkey doesn't work, you will need to gradually eliminate cigarettes from your life. To do this, set a date in eight to 12 weeks for you to be cigarette free.
- Develop a plan. Put together a plan that will help you gradually reduce the number of cigarettes you smoke in a day.
- Get help from family and friends. Explain to them why you are quitting and when. Ask them to help remind you why you want to quit and to hold you accountable. Also, ask them to be patient when you experience any withdrawal symptoms that will occur. These include headaches, trouble sleeping, anxiety, moodiness, and irritability.
- Make it a competition. Chances are you know someone else researching how to quit smoking because they want to drop the habit, too. Work together to develop your plans and then turn it into a competition with a prize at the end. This will add one more motivating reason to quit smoking.
- Reward yourself. As you hit important milestones in your plan, reward yourself. Maybe after you have cut out smoking at mealtime, you treat your family to a nice dinner. Don't worry about the expense - you'll be able to pay for it with the money you are saving not buying cigarettes!
- Pick yourself up. If you fall off of your plan, don't get discouraged. Get back on your plan immediately and continue moving toward being smoke free.
How to Stop Smoking by Breaking the Addiction
There are three basic products that will help you to stop smoking:
- Nicotine Replacement Therapies. These release small amounts of nicotine into the body to reduce the cravings and withdrawal symptoms that you can expect to feel. These do not require a visit or prescription from the doctor. However, you will probably need to combine products to maximize your chances of success. You will want to have a product that slowly releases nicotine into your body throughout the day to help take the edge off of your withdrawal symptoms. You will also want to have a product available that will take care of sudden cravings. Use as directed because they can be habit forming.
- Prescription Medications. It is believed that these medications work to alter the chemistry in the brain so that the need for nicotine and withdrawal symptoms are greatly reduced. These are available only through a doctor. They also carry the strongest warning from the FDA because they can cause suicidal thoughts, suicidal behaviors, hostility, and depression.
- Herbal supplements. These are an all-natural alternative to the first two options. When used as recommended, they are not habit forming. They do not require a prescription from a doctor. And, best of all, they do not introduce any artificial substances into the body. In fact, some of the ingredients are available in root beer and candy!
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