Whilst facts and the health risks should be stated (I would suggest some smokers are aware of the dangers, yet are guilty of turning a blind eye to them), there is room for using less scare tactics as motivation to quit. Why not pick out some positive motivators? The financial accumulation that stopping smoking leads to, or a youngger looking skin, cleaner smelling clothes, and a positive re-alignment of the senses? As a food enthusiast, I feel somewhat rejuvinated to be able to appreciate the smell and taste of wonderful foods without it being fogged by chemicals absorbed through cigarettes.
Whether tackling quitting smoking using negative or positive effects, or both, motivation and determination are key factors. You do not get far without them.
There are assistive options available to work in tandem with motivation and determination. Choosing the right option will vary according to the individuals attitude and mindset, so to recommend one method over another is perhaps unwise. A combination of methods is an option. If one does not seem to be working, then what harm to go down a different road? So long as you take those two key factors along with you.
The least cost yet potentially the most difficult method is going cold turkey, a system solely reliant on willpower. One day you are a smoker, the next day you are not. For those who have successfully overcome the habit in such a way, you deserve all the accolades! For others, this may seem too daunting, and would consider their quitting chances higher with additional support.
Medications are available in consultation with a GP as part of a comprehensive plan to stop smoking. These include Buproprion Hydrochloride and Verenicline, taken over a period of 2-3 months to help reduce the addiction and withdrawal suffering. Whilst this may prove a preferred option to some, there are the potential side effects to consider too, such as drowsiness and headaches.
Nicotene Replacement Therapy (NRT) is probably the most obvious route. This is an easily accessible method with patches, lozenges and gum wide available on the High Street. One possible advantage this method has is having a gradually reduced stream of nicotene delivered into the system while eliminating the routine of physically lighting up and holding a cigarette. Job half done? Perhaps, but the addictive substance is still being consumed. After 3 months when the NRT program has finished there is no cast iron guarantee the cravings will have gone when the supply has suddenly been cut off.
It could be if this happens, a more alternative approach to be considered, although an alternative approach is not just a route to go down should the pre-mentioned methods not succeed. It could be a starting point. After all, swallowing juices from nicotene gum or taking medication with potential side effects is not to everyones taste.
Some of the more alternative approaches to giving up smoking that may be worth exploring include hypnosis, neuro linguistic programming and acupuncture. Self help books are becoming more broadly available too
Giving up smoking is not a quick-fix. It is an ongoing process. There are tools and behavioral procedures available to assist and give a helping hand to long term success. Motivation and determination must remain to keep in control of ones destination. Keep a journal; remind yourself why you stopped smoking, make a note of any near relapses, what caused them and how to deal with them should such situations arise again. Get support from friends and family, utilize the telephone help lines and online discussion forums. There is ongoing help out there