Cigarette smoking is one of the worst things you can get addicted to.
It not only deteriorates your health and puts you on a conveyor belt towards cancer and premature death, it also affects the health of your near and dear ones by the secondary smoke that you spread in your surroundings with every puff of a cigarette.
Additionally, even if people realise the harmful effects that smoking cigarettes is exerting on their body and life, they don’t manage to stop doing it as a result of the nicotine present in cigarettes.
Nicotine is a highly addictive chemical that is responsible for getting you hooked to cigarette smoking and not being able to get rid of it.
Quitting smoking is a long drawn out and difficult process, as your body becomes used to having nicotine.
When you suddenly stop your intake of nicotine(smoking), you start feeling uncomfortable, restless and crave cigarettes.
This is because of the withdrawal symptoms of nicotine.
Most physical symptoms are known to go away after a few days to a week, but cigarette cravings stay around for a long time.
If you are one of those who has finally realized that cigarettes are ruining your life along with emptying your wallet, and you want to get rid of this life-threatening addiction once and for all, here are 10 effective ways for boosting your efforts and beginning a fresh new life free of smoke.
Nicotine replacement therapy(NRT)
Nicotine replacement therapy (NRT) is the most common technique used in quitting smoking.
It involves the use of nicotine gum, patches, sprays, inhalers and lozenges which give you a small controlled amount of nicotine without the other dangerous chemicals found in cigarettes.
This leads to a reduction in withdrawal feelings as the small amount of nicotine assists in satisfying your craving for nicotine.
NRT is also backed by doctors and medical experts as one of the most helpful tools for smokers to quit smoking.
Research has also shown that NRT is safe and effective to use.
There are also prescription non-nicotine medications you can use for stopping smoking, such as bupropion and varenicline.
Electronic cigarettes have come to the fore in the last few years as a replacement for traditional cigarettes.
But, there is no substantial research to validate their effectiveness in quitting smoking and their long-term effects on the human body are unknown.
Getting help from a counselor on tackling your cravings through a pre-defined plan is very crucial in avoiding a relapse.
Your counselor will assist you in finding your triggers(situations/emotions that urge you to smoke) and deriving ways of staying away from smoking.
Yoga, deep breathing exercises, progressive muscle relaxation, visualization, guided imagery, massage, listening to calming music and various forms of meditation are also known to be very effective in aiding many smokers to quit.
These techniques reduce stress and promote a feeling of peace within your mind and body.
Try out these techniques and find the ones that give you results while making you feel at ease.
Meditation is very effective in reducing stress and enhancing your self-control while having a glut of other health benefits.
Mindfulness meditation, especially, has helped smokers in quitting this deadly habit.
One research study found that some smokers who underwent a few hours of meditation or relaxation techniques halved their consumption of cigarettes without even realising it.
So incorporating meditation in your daily life can significantly boost your chances of quitting cigarettes.
The Meditation Sidekick Journal can help you in doing that.
It is a short book and highly interactive 90-day journal that guides you through learning how to contemplate, simplifies self-inquiry and promotes individual growth.
Exercise can help you in avoiding falling prey to cravings and in dealing with the withdrawal symptoms of nicotine.
Plus, it is a great distraction from the tobacco cravings and also reduces their intensity.
Just running up and down the stairs a few times could make a tobacco craving go away.
Research has shown that physical activity can help alleviate stress and anxiety while it is also known to boost brain chemicals linked with a sense of well-being.
Chew on something and eat healthy
Keep your mouth busy when faced with a tobacco craving by munching on nuts, raw carrots, cucumbers, candy or no-sugar gum.
Also since nicotine is an appetite-suppressant, once people begin the process of quitting, they have an increase in appetite and start gaining weight by indulging in junk food.
Prepare a healthy diet plan in advance to avoid weight gain and keep you fresh and full of energy.
Stay away from people who smoke
It is quite essential that you stay as far away as possible from people who smoke, whether it be friends or family.
Seeing them smoke could break your resistance and cause a relapse.
So it is advised to stay away from smokers as much as possible.
Stay away from places where you frequently used to smoke
Another thing to keep in mind is to avoid visiting your regular smoking spots.
They may cause the same effect as mentioned in the previous point.
Get support from friends and family
According to experts, social support is one of the most important determinants of success for smokers trying to quit.
Being with people helps in reducing stress.
Talk to your near and dear ones whenever you begin to feel stressed.
Communicate with a friend, family member or support group member to assist in your effort to resist a tobacco craving.
A friendly supportive conversation can do wonders in relieving stress and resisting a craving.
Do things you enjoy doing
Staying busy and stress-free is vital in averting the development of smoking-related thoughts in the mind.
You can do this by engaging in enjoyable activities that give you pleasure.
Taking a walk with your dog, watching your favorite movies, playing with your kids, etc. will not only help in reducing the urge for smoking but also remind you of how joyful a life without cigarettes could be.
All the above-mentioned ways aid in resisting the urge of cigarettes, but if you want best possible results in a short period of time, then incorporate all of these techniques into your de-addiction arsenal and let their combined effect relieve you of this lethal and addictive habits.