So you think you want to quit?
‘I think I will reduce the number slowly and then stop’ versus ‘I will stop completely from today’. These are the two most common ways a smoker prefers to quit. So which way is the right one for you?
Which is the most effective way?
Majority of people (almost 80%) who have successfully quit smoking have done so by quitting immediately. They decided to never take another cigarette and they followed through on that promise to themselves.
You could also try to quit slowly but surely until you no longer need a cigarette, especially the heavy smokers having withdrawal troubles.
Many people attempt to quit on their own. Some try multiple attempts. If you slipped up, don’t despair. Remember this:
• Don’t give up. Learning to be a nonsmoker is like learning to ride a bike: When you fall off, get right back on.
• Just because you had a cigarette doesn’t mean you’re a smoker again.
• Don’t make excuses. “I had one, I might as well finish the pack.” Stop now. The goal is no smoking – not even one puff.
• Give yourself credit for past success.
• Try to remember why you quit. Focus on the positive aspects of not smoking.
• Learn from the experience. Think of ways you could have avoided the slip up. So you are prepared next time you are in the same situation.
Share the five D’s to help yourself or your loved one through the early days of quitting:
• Delay: The craving goes away eventually.
• Deep breath: Take a few calming deep breaths.
• Drink water: It flushes out the nicotine (addictive chemical)
• Do something else: Find an activity he or she enjoys.
• Discuss: Your thoughts and feelings.
If you have attempted repeatedly to quit or are afraid to quit you need help. Don’t shy away. Approach the quit smoking clinic at Bahrain specialist hospital and let us help you.
How is it done?
Creating a new habit is one of the hardest things to do. Experts say it takes about six months for a new behavior to become a habit. With some careful planning and will power, you can overcome these triggers.
Talk to us about a program that fits your needs. People that use both nicotine replacement therapy and behavior change techniques double their chances of quitting for good. There are also prescription medicines that help some people quit smoking. Together you can make a plan that is right for you.
Dr Sonal Jagtap
Bahrain Specialist Hospital