Quit Smoking Now - Guide to a Smoke-Free Life
If you’re reading this, you may have a cigarette in your hand right now. As anyone who’s smoked can attest, that slim white tube can become an integral part of you—and your life.
Even so, most smokers have tried or at least thought of quitting, and for so many reasons. Smoking has been implicated as the prime suspect or chief accomplice in a host of major maladies—including cancer, emphysema, heart attack, stroke, diabetes—and many problems almost as alarming, including brain hemorrhages, metabolic syndrome and losing your teeth. The habit also limits your lifestyle, both physically and socially.
Quitting cold turkey—choosing to never light up again—is the method that requires the greatest willpower and the strongest support network to succeed. If you’re regularly in an environment where smoking is common, for example, giving up cigarettes can be tough.
Here are a few methods that go beyond willpower that can help you successfully quit smoking:
A typical program in Japan, for example, takes eight to twelve weeks. If you smoke a pack a day and have Japanese national health insurance, you’ll end up paying about twice as much money to keep puffing away as you would to get rid of your cigarettes during the same period. The person who quits will be both healthier and wealthier.
OTC Medicine: NRT products are also available to purchase at your local drugstore. These treatments are administered in the form of patches and gums that contain nicotine, and alleviate the deep cravings and withdrawal symptoms that smokers experience. They also eliminate the social stigma, cleanup and secondhand and thirdhand smoke that come with the habit. Using NRT has been shown to virtually double your chances of successfully quitting smoking.
Other Options: Your alternatives for giving up tobacco include hypnosis, acupuncture and online stop-smoking groups. Hypnosis generally involves both aversion therapy—getting you thinking of the poisons cigarettes put in your body—and positive reinforcement, in the form of having you imagine how much better and healthier your life will be without smoking. Acupuncture treatments put the priority on relaxation, detoxification and easing the craving for tobacco, and address symptoms such as the jitters, irritability and restlessness that stopping smoking brings. The online groups operate as remote buddy systems, much like Smokers Anonymous and Nicotine Anonymous, giving you backup when the craving hits hardest.
Good luck—we know that you and everyone around you will breathe easier if you succeed!
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