Decide positively that you want to quit
- Make a list of your reasons for quitting, (personal reasons, health benefits, financial advantages, and medical effects).
- Set a quit date within the next two weeks. Don't allow anything to change that date. Pick a date that's meaningful to you. Start while your motivation is high.
- Identify barriers to quitting. What will make it difficult? What can you do to make it easier? Make the changes before your quit date.
- Make a list of people who can support your intentions to quit. Tell everyone you know that you plan to quit and accept their help and praise.
- Identify your triggers to smoke. Clean your car and home; try to remove the smell of smoke as much as possible. Throw out your ashtrays and lighters. If alcohol, coffee or tea triggers your urge to smoke, consider avoiding them as well while quitting.
- Success may require some changes in your daily routine. Think about these changes before you quit and then, follow through. Change your daily habits associated with tobacco use. Consider changing your driving route to work or school, finding a new place to eat lunch; avoiding places where you usually smoke; reach for gum, water, sugarless candy, a straw, rather than cigarettes.
- Eat your meal slowly. After dinner, instead of reaching for a cigarette, take a walk, have a mint, chew gum or sip some water.
- Distract yourself. Keep your hands and mind busy. Read a book, knit, try a new hobby or something else new!
- Exercise! Pass on the elevator and take the stairs, park the car a block or two from your destination and walk the rest of the way.
- Take one day at a time. Delay the urge to smoke. Tell yourself your can smoke tomorrow if you want, but not today.
- Talk to your health care provider about medications to help you. Evidence shows that medication plus support work best. There are several nicotine replacement therapies.
- Nicotine patch
- Bupropion (Zyban, Wellbutrin)
- Varenicline (Chantix)
- Nicotine gum
- Nicotine lozenge
- Nicotine inhaler
- Nicotine nasal spray
- Reward yourself for small successes. Set milestones for rewards. Accept praise from others. Quitting tobacco is difficult and you deserve credit for your efforts.