If you smoke, you have probably given a lot of thought to the reasons you want to quit. What you may not have thought about, are other ways to cope with life without cigarettes. It helps to know what to expect when attempting to quit. Talk to friends, family, or co-workers who are ex- smokers. Ask them what they did to get through tough cravings. Whether you are trying to quit or aiming to support a friend or family member, there are general do’s and don’ts that can help a person through the tough process.
General hints include:
• Ask the person how they are doing, or how they are feeling, rather than if they are still smoke free.
• Help provide quitting aids such as hard candies, straws to chew on and fresh cut up veggies to munch on.
• Spend time distracting the quitter to keep their mind off smoking and get past the craving by going to the movies or taking walks.
• Don’t offer advice. Just ask how you can help. Respect that the quitter is in charge.
• Make your home smoke free. Remove lighters, ashtrays and other triggers.
• Don’t take the quitter’s bad mood personally.
The symptoms of physical withdrawal from nicotine are real, and usually start to get better in about 2 weeks. The belief that you can stop smoking can increase your odds of success. Look for inspiration from others who have quit smoking.