Category Archives: Health

Tips for quit smoke

Tired of the same old quitting tips? How will you navigate the up to 72 hours needed to reach peak withdrawal and again reside inside a nicotine-free body? The below cold turkey tips are vastly different from the advice rendered by those advocating months of using worthless and ineffective nicotine replacement products, nicotine that undercuts success and is costing lives.

1. The Law of Addiction – “Administration of a drug to an addict will cause re-establishment of chemical dependence upon the addictive substance.” It’s rooted in studies finding that lapse equals relapse for nearly all quitters.

Nicotine dependence is real drug addiction. While most walk away from trying to cheat when quitting feeling like they have gotten away with it, we cannot cheat the design of brain circuitry whose job it is to make activating events nearly impossible in the short term (the time needed for recovery) to forget or ignore. And it wouldn’t be long before we found our brain wanting, plotting to obtain, or even begging for more.

The natural insecticide nicotine has de-sensitized and rewired your brain, causing it to grow millions of nicotinic receptors in at least eleven different regions. Although nicotine’s arrival is accompanied by alertness, not intoxication, numbness, euphoria or a racing sensation, the wanting you’ll feel for that next fix flows from the same dopamine pathways as the wanting felt by the alcoholic, heroin, cocaine and methamphetamine addict.

Treating true addiction as though some nasty little habit capable of manipulation, modification or control is a recipe for relapse and an early grave. Fully accept who we are, real drug addicts. It can be our most liberating moment ever. Accept that there is no such thing as just one, that one will always be too many, while thousands never enough.

Remember, half of adult smokers continue to smoke themselves to death. They lose an average of 13-14 years of life (U.S. male & female rates). Your smoking deathline — the point beyond which the damage done makes quitting and regaining full life expectancy impossible — is approaching. It’s time for quitting games to end. Nicotine dependency recovery truly is all or nothing. And there’s one rule which if followed makes failure impossible: no nicotine today!

2. Measuring Victory – Forget about quitting “forever.” Like attempting the seemingly impossible task of eating an entire cow (steer), it’s the biggest psychological bite imaginable. Why not instead eat one nice juicy steak at a time. Adopt a realistic and do-able victory yardstick that celebrates freedom an hour, challenge and day at a time. If you insist on seeing success only in terms of quitting forever, then on which day will you celebrate? Who is coming to that party?

3. Emotional Recovery – Chemical dependency upon smoking nicotine is one of the most intense, repetitive and dependable relationships you’ve likely ever known. It has infected almost every aspect of your life and thinking. Be prepared to experience a normal sense of emotional loss when quitting which transports you through six very different phases: denial, anger, bargaining,  depression,  acceptance, and complacency. This emotional journey is normal and a necessary part of recovery.

4. Do Not Skip Meals – Each puff of the stimulant nicotine was your spoon releasing stored fats and sugars into your bloodstream via your body’s fight or flight pathways. It allowed you to skip meals without experiencing wild blood-sugar swing symptoms, such as an inability to concentrate or hunger related anxieties. Why add needless symptoms to withdrawal? Instead, learn to spread your normal daily calorie intake out more evenly over the entire day. Try hard not to skip breakfast or lunch. It’s not about eating more food but less food more frequently.

Drink plenty of acidic fruit juice the first three days. Cranberry is excellent and a bottle will cost less that a pack of cigarettes. It will help to both accelerate the up to 72 hours needed to remove the alkaloid nicotine from your bloodstream, and help stabilize blood sugars. Take care beyond three days as juices can be rather fattening.

Man free of smoke tips

You’ve decided to quit smoking. Congratulations! Your first day without cigarettes can be difficult. Here are five steps you can take to handle quit day and be confident about being able to stay quit.

1. Make a Quit Plan

Having a plan can make your quit day easier. A quit plan gives you ways to stay focused, confident, and motivated to quit. You can build your own quit plan or find a quit program that works for you. Check out SmokefreeTXT, QuitGuide app, or a quitlinelike 1-800-QUIT-NOW (1-800-784-8669) or 1-877-44U-QUIT (1-877-448-7848) to get started. If you don’t know what quit method might be right for you, visit the Quit Smoking Methods Explorer to learn more. No single approach to quitting works for everyone. Be honest about your needs. If using nicotine replacement therapy is part of your plan, be sure to start using it first thing in the morning.

2. Stay Busy

Keeping busy is a great way to stay smokefree on your quit day. Being busy will help you keep your mind off smoking and distract you from cravings. Think about trying some of these activities:

  • Get out of the house for a walk.
  • Chew gum or hard candy.
  • Keep your hands busy with a pen or toothpick, or play a game in the QuitGuide app.
  • Drink lots of water.
  • Relax with deep breathing.
  • Go to a movie.
  • Spend time with non-smoking friends and family.
  • Go to dinner at your favorite smokefree restaurant.

 

3. Avoid Smoking Triggers

Triggers are the people, places, things, and situations that set off your urge to smoke. On your quit day, try to avoid all your triggers. Here are some tips to help you outsmart some common smoking triggers:

  • Throw away your cigarettes, lighters, and ash trays if you haven’t already.
  • Avoid caffeine, which can make you feel jittery. Try drinking water instead.
  • Spend time with non-smokers.
  • Go to places where smoking isn’t allowed.
  • Get plenty of rest and eat healthy. Being tired can trigger you to smoke.
  • Change your routine to avoid the things you might associate with smoking.

 

4. Stay Positive

Quitting smoking is difficult. It happens one minute… one hour… one day at a time. Try not to think of quitting as forever. Pay attention to today and the time will add up. It helps to stay positive. Your quit day might not be perfect, but all that matters is that you don’t smoke—not even one puff. Reward yourself for being smokefree for 24 hours. You deserve it. And if you’re not feeling ready to quit today, set a quit date that makes sense for you. It’s OK if you need a few more days to prepare to quit smoking.

5. Ask for Help

You don’t need to rely on willpower alone to be smokefree. Tell your family and friends when your quit day is. Ask them for support on quit day and in the first few days and weeks after. They can help you get through the rough spots. Let them know exactly how they can support you. Don’t assume they’ll know.

Tips free for women smoke

Although you’ve decided that you want to quit smoking, you’re probably still going to want to smoke. Most people crave cigarettes for a while after they quit smoking. Just remember: the urge to smoke will come and go—and eventually it will go away for good! Try to wait it out—most cravings only last a few minutes.

Here are some more tips that can help you deal with them:

  1. Do things and go places where smoking is not allowed
    Some good places are malls, libraries, museums, theaters, department stores, and places of worship. Keep this up until you’re sure you can stay smokefree.
  2. Hold something
    Do you miss having a cigarette in your hand? Hold something else. Try a pencil, a paper clip, a marble, or a water bottle.
  3. Put something in your mouth
    Do you miss having something in your mouth? Try toothpicks, cinnamon sticks, lollipops, hard candy, sugar free gum, or carrot sticks.
  4. Drink a lot of water and fruit juice
    Avoid drinks like wine and beer. They can trigger you to smoke.
  5. Walk or brush after meals
    Instead of smoking after meals, get up from the table. Brush your teeth or go for a walk.
  6. Take public transit instead of driving, if you can
    If you always smoke while driving, try something new. Listen to a new radio station or your favorite music. Take a different route. Or take the train or bus for a while, if you can.
  7. Stay away from things that you connect with smoking
    You may be used to smoking while watching TV, sitting in your favorite chair, or having a drink before dinner. Avoid these routines. Do it today and for the next few weeks.
  8. Remember, most people don’t smoke
    If you must be someplace where you’ll be tempted to smoke, like a party or in a bar, try to be near the non-smokers.
  9. Eat a healthy snack
    Keeping finger foods around instead of cigarettes will help you make it through a craving. Try carrots, pickles, sunflower seeds, apples, celery, raisins, or sugar free gum.
  10. Wash your hands
    Wash your hands or do the dishes when you want a cigarette very badly. Or take a shower.
  11. Breathe
    Take 10 slow, deep breaths and hold the last one. Repeat. Or practice Deep Conscious Breathing.
  12. Light a candle
    Light incense or a candle instead of a cigarette.
  13. Move around
    Where you are and what is going on can make you crave a cigarette. A change of scene can really help. Go outside, or go to a different room. You can also try changing what you are doing.
  14. Stay strong and continue to work hard
    No matter what, don’t think, “Just one won’t hurt.” It will hurt.
  15. Try something—anything—just don’t give in!
    Remember: Trying something to beat the urge is always better than trying nothing.

Replace cigarettes with something else

You’ve trained your brain and body to depend on cigarettes in order to feel good.  It’s therefore important to do things you enjoy, so as to break your cigarette-related habits.  Obviously, as far as possible you’ll need to avoid the activities and even the people you associate in your mind with cigarettes, until you’ve been deprogrammed.

  • Move!  Replace cigarettes by sweat-inducing physical activities that you enjoy or would like to try (e.g. fast walking, fitness training, in-line skating, hockey, swimming, basketball, badminton, soccer, cycling, volleyball, climbing, dancing, boxing, karate, jogging, etc.).
  • Have fun!  Look around for other activities that you enjoy and that will allow you to laugh – for example, improvisation, acting, movies, reading, singing, music, etc.
  • Keep your hands busy!  Keep your hands busy with something else – for example, an elastic band, a paper clip or a pencil.  If you’re used to smoking while talking on the telephone, hold the receiver in the hand you would normally use to smoke.  Get involved in DIY, draw something, take up photography, play a musical instrument, work on a computer, pet your dog, play with an anti-stress ball, etc.
  • Keep your mouth busy!  If you feel you need something in your mouth, chew gum, a cinnamon stick or a straw, brush your teeth several times a day (toothpaste makes cigarettes taste bad), eat carrot or celery sticks or other fresh foods, drink a lot of water, etc.
  • Tip kit!  Make a NS (non-smoking) kit from a selection of the items listed above, and keep it close by at all times.
  • Positive thinking!  If you’re capable of finding a pretext to smoke, you should also be capable of finding an excuse not to smoke.  It’s a matter of positive thinking.
  • Support person!  Have someone you can talk to, both when things are going well and when they’re not.
  • Relax!  Sleep a lot, stretch out, breathe deeply or yawn, decorate your environment and learn some relaxation techniques.
  • Reward yourself!  Reward yourself regularly with the money you save by not buying cigarettes.  Suggestion: open a separate bank account for a vacation, a boat, a motorcycle or a dream you’d like to turn into reality

Tips to help you free of cigarettes

The idea is to change how you think and what you do, to reduce or eliminate your exposure to the things, people and situations that make you want to smoke, or that reduce your chances of success.

  • Eliminate a cigarette break by doing something else that you enjoy.
  • If people offer you cigarettes, say no.
  • Challenge some of your preconceived ideas or clichés concerning your relationship with cigarettes (e.g. “cigarettes are my best friends”, “it’ll never be as enjoyable with a beer, a coffee, etc.”, and so on).
  • Do things with non-smokers.
  • Smoke your first cigarette of the day later than usual.
  • Smoke a few less cigarettes each day.
  • Keep your pack of cigarettes, matches or lighter and ashtray out of reach.
  • Eliminate the smell of cigarette smoke from your clothes, your home, etc.
  • Reduce or avoid coffee, tea, cola and alcohol for as long as it takes.
  • Avoid negative thoughts; concentrate instead on your motivators and goals.
  • If you’re a woman, schedule your quit date after your monthly period, when the withdrawal symptoms will be less severe.
  • An urge to smoke lasts less than five minutes.  Every time you feel an urge, find something else to do (preferably something you enjoy), and your urges will come less frequently.  This is how you will succeed in deprogramming yourself.