If you Quit Smoking
you've decided to stop smoking, there are several roads
you can follow to lead to a cigarette-free life. One of
these is to quit cold turkey, relying solely on your
desire to quit, self-control and discipline to achieve
your goal. It won't be easy and you may have withdrawal
symptoms, but there are techniques to help you over the
Because you've become chemically dependent on nicotine, YOU may have to cope with withdrawal symptoms. The longer you've smoked, the more difficult it will be, because the drug has gained firm and demanding control over your body. You will probably feel irritable, anxious and nervous. You may find it hard to concentrate. You may feel restless or drowsy or you may have headaches or stomach upsets. But most of all, you're going to have a strong craving for nicotine. Here's the good news: The longer you're nicotine-free the fewer symptoms you'll have. They usually peak on the third day after quitting, then gradually disappear, although the craving for nicotine may pop up again at any time.
What to Do
Medical and psychological researchers have developed a few simple methods that may help you through the withdrawal woes:
DEEP BREATHING. Inhale deeply through the nose, then exhale slowly through pursed lips. This helps you relax and generally relieves tension and irritability.
DRINK MORE WATER. This helps wash nicotine out of the system and helps curb the craving for nicotine.
EXERCISE. In addition to improving the state of your heart and lungs, exercise is extremely effective in overpowering the desire to smoke. Aerobic exercises are particularly recommended, including walking, running and swimming.
Changing Your Habits
In addition to the three simple procedures listed above, you should begin to work on changing parts of your daily routine that trigger cigarette smoking. If you always smoke after a meal, get up as soon as you're finished and do something else. Make yourself conscious of the times you light up automaticallywhen the phone rings, when you get into the car, when you turn on the TVand work hard to change those patterns. Keep busy, pick up an old hobby, chew on a toothpick or carrot. It's important to remember that the urge to smoke will pass, so keep diverting your mind and body away from cigarettes.
You should be proud of yourself when you quit cold turkey or any other way. It's a difficult path, lined with many temptations, so don't hesitate to reward yourself when you have passed a particularly difficult period. Buy yourself a little gift. Or get tickets to a concert. Since you're in the process of kicking a dangerous, deadly habit, you deserve a special "thank you" to yourself.