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Avoid smoking triggers
Recognize places and situations that
make you want to smoke and avoid
them. Instead, visit places where
smoking isn’t allowed, such as a
museum or movie theater. Hang out
with people who don’t smoke or who
also want to quit smoking. At work, use
the main door instead of the smoking
entrance. Keep especially busy during
times when boredom may tempt you to
smoke. Make it inconvenient to smoke
by stashing your cigarettes and lighters
in the car when you’re at home or
work. Also, replace old behaviors with
new routines that aren’t associated with
smoking. Chew gum while you drive,
or take a new route to work to keep
your interest in your environment and
away from smoking. Get up from the
table immediately after eating. Drink
water or tea instead of coffee or alcohol.
Practice saying, “No thanks, I don’t smoke.”
Try a stop-smoking product
Don’t use withdrawal symptoms or cravings
as an excuse to not quit smoking. Plenty of
stop-smoking products and medications
with Food and Drug Administration
approval are available to help you manage.
Some types of nicotine replacement
therapy — including patches, gum and
lozenges — are available over-the-counter.
Nicotine nasal spray and the nicotine
inhaler are available by prescription.
Other prescription medications may
also be options. Bupropion (Zyban)
can help control nicotine cravings.
Varenicline (Chantix) can reduce both
the pleasurable effects of smoking and
any nicotine withdrawal symptoms. You
may be able to use a combination of stop-
smoking products at the
same time. Using a stop-
smoking product along
with counseling to achieve
changes in your behavior and
beliefs is the most effective
way to quit smoking. Talk
to your health care provider
about what stop-smoking
products may be best for you.
Manage your stress
Stress and anxiety can
increase your urge to smoke
and derail your effort to
quit smoking. To keep
stress and anxiety under
control, prioritize your tasks.
Consider what tasks you
can eliminate or delegate to
someone else. Take a break
when you need it. Practice
relaxation exercises, such
as physical activity, deep
breathing or meditation.
Stretch or simply listen to
your favorite music.
Take it one day at a
time
Don’t worry about next week
or next month. Focus on
what you can do today to
quit smoking. Every hour
without a cigarette can
bring you one step closer
to quitting for good — and
freedom from an unhealthy,
expensive habit.
Celebrate your
successes
Made it through the day
without a cigarette? Treat
yourself to something
special. Made it through
the week? Count how much
you’ve saved by not buying
cigarettes. Use the savings for
a special treat or invest the
money for the future. Reward
yourself for not smoking by
doing something you enjoy
every day, such as spending
extra time with your children
or grandchildren, going
to a ball game, taking a
walk, soaking in the tub or
watching a movie. All of
your small successes can help
you reach your goal to quit
smoking for good.
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Apr/May 2014