The Ultimate Guide on How to Stop Smoking
How to Stop Smoking: To get motivated, you need a powerful, personal reason to stop. Or lower your chance of getting lung cancer, heart disease, or other problems. Or to feel and look younger. Choose a reason that is strong enough to outweigh the urge to light up.
There’s more to it than simply tossing your cigarettes out. The mind is hooked on nicotine. Without it, you are going to go through withdrawal. Line up support in advance. Ask your doctor about all of the methods to assist, such as quit-smoking courses and apps, counseling, medication, and hypnosis. You’ll be prepared for the day you decide to quit.
When you quit smoking, nicotine withdrawal can give you headaches, affect your mood, or sap your energy. The craving for”only 1 drag” is tough. Nicotine replacement therapy can curb these urges. Studies show that nicotine gum, lozenges, and patches improve your odds of success when you are also in a quit-smoking program.
Medicines can curb cravings and may also make smoking less satisfying if you do pick up a cigarette.
Ultimate Guide on How to Stop Smoking
According to Statista, about 19% of the global adult population are smokers. Although the overall percentage of smokers around the world has decreased from as high as 27.5% in 2007, smoking is still a worldwide epidemic. What’s worse, according to the World Health Organization, tobacco kills over 8 million users every year. It’s a major public health threat.
Instead of highlighting the benefits of not smoking, here’s a brief on why smoking is bad and a list of tips to quit smoking. You’ll find the negative sides of smoking and how you can break this unhealthy habit.
Why is Smoking Bad?
Tobacco damages almost every organ in your body, and it’s responsible for a wide range of diseases. In fact, two poisonous substances in tobacco affect your health – carbon monoxide and tar. What’s more, carbon monoxide, in large doses, is fatal. The substance replaces the oxygen in your blood, which leads to your organs suffering from oxygen deficiencies. And tar, which is a brown and sticky substance, covers your lungs and makes it difficult for you to breath.
According to Medical News Today, smoking increases the risk of having a stroke by up to 4 times. You can suffer from a brain aneurysm, which occurs when the walls of blood vessels weaken and lead to subarachnoid hemorrhage.
Also, smoking weakens your bone structure, which increases the risk of osteoporosis. It’s especially dangerous for women because they’re more prone to the disease. On top of that, because of plaque build-up on the walls of your arteries, blood flow is reduced. This leads to increased blood pressure and heart rates and makes blood clots more likely to occur. The harmful chemicals in tobacco cause diseases such as coronary heart disease, heart attacks, and stroke.
But the most affected parts of the body are your lungs. Smoking causes significant damage to the alveoli in the lungs and your airways. What’s worse, because lung disease is difficult to diagnose, it’s often too advanced when identified. Smoking causes a wide range of respiratory problems, including COPD (chronic obstructive pulmonary disease), chronic bronchitis, and emphysema. Besides lung cancer, smoking also increases the risks of many other types of cancer such as mouth, larynx, pharynx, kidney, liver, pancreas, bladder, colon, stomach, and myeloid leukemia.
Every Habit Is Hard to Quit
The process of quitting bad habits is difficult because, usually, you don’t have a system in place to adopt healthier new habits. And even if you follow a strict regime, it often focuses on helping you quit a bad habit, not choose a new one.
Thoughts develop feelings, which lead to different actions and behaviors. And, over time, these behaviors turn into habits. But habits also form in your memory system. And it’s your procedural memory, found in your subconscious, where habits form. MIT researchers discovered that behaviors trigger neurons in your subconscious, which subside during the behavior and reactivate when it ends.
What’s more, over time, specific patterns form. This makes it challenging to quit a habit such as smoking. But, with the right guidance, you’ll find an efficient way to break this unhealthy and harmful habit.
Tips to Stop Smoking
Although even smoking fewer cigarettes can still cause serious damage to your body, it’s an efficient way to begin your journey to long-term quitting. But you must plan, set a quit day, and stick to it. Although it’s better to quit smoking altogether, not everyone can do it immediately. So, set a date within a couple of months to stop smoking and during this period cut down on the number of cigarettes you smoke. Set goals to reduce your daily cigarette consumption, decrease gradually, and use stop smoking medication.
A craving journal can help you identify your triggers and behavioral patterns. Record the times when you smoke during the day, what stop smoking medication you use, measure the intensity of your craving on a scale from 1 to 10, and what you were doing when you felt the craving. Also, write down who you were with, how you were feeling, and how you felt after you had a cigarette.
Although avoiding smoking triggers will reduce your cravings for a cigarette, you can’t fully avoid them. However, cravings usually only last for around 10 minutes. So, when you’re tempted to have a cigarette, remind yourself that your craving will soon be over. The best way to wait it out is by implementing different strategies such as finding healthier activities to relax. For example, read a book, listen to your favorite music, or play online games. You could also go out for a walk, try yoga, or go for a run in the park or on the beach. On the other hand, you could also try meditating, practice deep breathing, or take a warm bath.
Quitting smoking is a surefire way to improve your health. Although all habits are difficult to break, you’ll find a variety of efficient means to stop smoking. If the above advice hasn’t quite helped you kick the habit, consider visiting your doctor who may prescribe smoking cessation medication. The key is to have strategies in place, identify your triggers, and replace your bad habit with healthy activities. You’ll soon overcome any cravings for a cigarette and will quit smoking in no time.