“It’s never too late – in fiction or in life – to revise.” – Nancy Thayer
1. What are the facts about smoking?
As we know, smoking tobacco is both a psychological habit and a physical addiction. The act of smoking provides a temporary and addictive. Quitting the habit of smoking will cause your body to experience physical withdrawal of symptoms and cravings. It is not easy task to quit smoking. But regular practice to quit smoking will be possible with changing behavior and dealing with nicotine withdrawal symptoms.
People start smoking so as to manage the feelings like depression, loneliness, fear, and anxiety and they get addicted to smoking. Smoking creates temporary happiness by getting rid of unlikable feelings. Ways to put full stop to these unpleasant feelings include exercise, meditation, making use of sensory relaxation strategies, and practicing breathing exercises. It is also necessary to find ways to deal with stressful situations instead of getting habituated to smoking.
2. Why to quit smoking?
Smoking creates many negative effects on a person’s health. Some of them are as follows:
• Toxic ingredients in cigarette smoke travel throughout the body, causing damage in several different ways.
• Nicotine reaches brain within 10 seconds of smoke inhalation. Smoke will spread to each and every part of the body immediately as soon they inhale it.
• Carbon monoxide binds to hemoglobin in red blood cells, stopping affected cells from carrying a full load of oxygen.
• The carcinogen benzo(a)pyrene binds to cells in the airways and major organs of smokers.
• Smoking affects the body immune system and it may increase the risk for respiratory and other infections.
• It will lead to lung cancer.
• Smoking causes fat deposits to narrow and block blood vessels which lead to heart attack.
• The other effects of smoking are:
– DNA mutation
– Chronic lung injury
– Encourages the aging process
– Development of cancer
– Cardiovascular disease
• Smoking reduces the levels of antioxidants in blood which helps to repair damaged cells.
• Cigarette smoking in women, at the time of pregnancy will increase the hazard of less birth weight, prematurity, unprompted abortion, and prenatal mortality in humans, which has been referred to as the fetal tobacco syndrome.
3. What are the effects of smoking in young people?
Smoking not only affects elders but it also creates more negative effects on young people:
• Among young people, smoking causes respiratory and non respiratory problems.
• Most young people who smoke regularly will have a lower level of lung function than those persons who have never smoked and it also reduces the rate of lung growth.
• Smoking will cause heart diseases.
• Smoking harms young people’s physical fitness in terms of both performance and stamina.
• A person who smokes a pack of cigarettes every day will live 7 years less than the one who has by no means smoked anytime
• The heart rate of young adult smokers beats two to three times per minute, faster than nonsmokers.
• Early age smoking will increases the risk of lung cancer.
• Adolescent smokers experience shortness of breath and produce more phlegm than teens who don’t smoke.
• Teenage smokers often consult a doctor for emotional or psychological problems.
4. What are the suggestive steps to quit smoking?
Quitting smoking is a strategic plan as it includes many steps and procedures to implement:
• Design your personal plan
Design your personal plans to quit smoking. Your reasons for quitting smoking should include:
– I want to be healthier and energetic in the long run
– I want to be free from cancer, heart attacks, strokes, early death, cataracts, and skin wrinkling.
– I want be ideal among my friends, family members, partner and others.
– I don’t want to expose my children and others to the dangers of second-hand smoke.
– Quit smoking with a strategy of START
* S = Set a date to start quitting smoking
* T = Tell your family, friends, and colleagues that you planning to quit smoking.
* A = Anticipate and be prepared for the challenges which you may face when you quit smoking.
* R = Replace your cigarette and tobacco products with some healthy fruits.
* T = Take the help of a doctor when planning to quit smoking
– How to manage smoking cravings
* Cravings associated with meals
Majority of smokers have a habit of lighting up a cigarette immediately after meals or dinner. This is not good for their health. Instead, they can replace that habit by eating a piece of fruit, a (healthy) dessert, a square of chocolate, or a stick of gum.
* Alcohol and cigarettes
The other common habit of having cigarette is when they have an alcoholic drink. Even drinking too much of alcohol is not good for health. It is suggested to drink limited alcohol. Try to drink at the places where smoking inside is prohibited or try nuts and chips, or chewing on a straw or cocktail stick.
* Cravings with social smoking
Ensure that people surrounding you are not smoking, as it is difficult to quit smoking when people around you smoke. Have your tea/coffee breaks with non-smokers to avoid smoke cravings.
* Additional tips to deal with cravings
• Try to be active and stay with happiness
• Try to keep your hands and fingers busy by pressing balls, pencils, or paper clips is a good alternate to satisfy need for tangible stimulation.
• Engage your mind by reading books or magazines.
• Carry some mints, hard candy, carrot or celery sticks, gum, and sunflower seeds to pop in your mouth when you’re craving a cigarette.
• It is better to drink lot of water which flushes toxins from your body and minimizes the withdrawal symptoms and helps cravings pass faster.
5. What are the alternative ways to quit smoking?
Quitting smoking is possible with a number of different methods or a combination of treatments to find the best method for you.
• Medication Therapy
Smoking can be eliminated by using medication therapy. Talk to your doctor about your options and anti-smoking medication. Below are some of the medication therapies:
• Nicotine Replacement Therapy
Nicotine replacement therapy includes “replacing” cigarettes with other nicotine substitutes like nicotine gum or nicotine patch. It acts as an agent to deliver small and steady doses of nicotine into the body to relieve some of the withdrawal symptoms.
• Non-Nicotine Medication
Medications like bupropion (Zyban) and varenicline (Chantix) will help to stop smoking by reducing cravings and withdrawal symptoms without the use of nicotine.
• Non-Medication therapies
Ask your doctor for below non meditational therapies to avoid smoking:
• Behavioral Therapy
• Motivational Therapies.