The Quitting Tobacco Guide

by Katie Bogusz on October 20, 2016

Quitting tobacco products, may it be cigarettes, spit tobacco, or even hookahs can seem overwhelming to many people.  Most people who use tobacco products these days know the dangers, but it seems like these products relieve their stress levels, help them maintain their weight, and allow them to be more social.  These perceived benefits do not outweigh the serious health problems that occur from tobacco use.  Don’t fret though!  We have some tips on how to quit your use of tobacco products…

e-cigs JUST AS BAD!Can't believe people still do this!The more you smoke,the more your nerve cells become immune to the pleasure brought on by smoking.As a result,smokers tend to increase their intake of nicotine to get that desirable feeling from smoking.2 Despite the"pleasure"that one gets from puffing a cig,remember this:smoking comes with devastating health effects.If you think smoking an e-cig makes a difference,it doesn't. Researchers actually found that a brand of e-cigarette contains:

Get Started with a Plan!

Try and create a plan leading up to the days when you are going to stop using tobacco products.  Set a “start date”, this should generally be 2 weeks after you begin learning and practicing some strategies and skills that will help you quit using tobacco products.  During those 2 weeks before your start date imagine some situations where you would be tempted to use tobacco products.  Maybe you are a social smoker or someone who smokes during breaks at work, try thinking of other activities you could do during those times that would allow you to remain tobacco free.

So what are some other more productive ways of dealing with stress instead of using tobacco products?  Trying taking walks, a 10 to 20 minute walk a day.  Exercise relieves stress and if you decide to quit it can help you prevent weight gain.  If you start being active try and do it 2 weeks before you decide to quit smoking because it makes it easier to make it part of your routine.

You could also start doing deep breathing exercises or meditating every day.  Just by doing deep breathing exercises 3-4 times day you can reduce stress, tension, and fatigue which will help you during the first couple of days after you quit using tobacco products.  Finally let your family and friends know that you decided to quit smoking and that you might need some more company to fill the times when you would usually be smoking.  Stay busy, plan events, and fill your time.  Your family and friends will be more than happy to know you decided to quit using tobacco products so they will be glad to help you fill your time with fun activities!

The urge to smoke will come and go. And typically, a craving will only last 5-10 minutes. It might be uncomfortable, but try to wait it out. Make a list of things you can do to distract yourself. #QuitTips #Smokefree:

The Day has Come, be Prepared!

The day has finally come to quit using tobacco products, so what should you do?  Your first 3 days are some of the most difficult so try and fill that time with activities.  Also don’t stop drinking coffee or tea, it will already be difficult enough quitting smoking don’t tack on other tasks for yourself at that time.  Try and stay away from alcohol for at least those first 3 weeks after quitting smoking.  Many people smoke and drink alcohol at the same time, so alcohol could trigger you to want to smoke again.  Also people’s inhibitions are lowered when drinking alcohol which could cause someone to decide to smoke again.

Drink lots of water during the first couple of weeks because it flushes the nicotine out of your system.  Make sure to carry a water bottle around with you to ensure that you hydrate enough!  Try taking warm showers every day to relieve stress and tension.  Sleeping is important during this time too, if you get enough sleep you are less likely to be overly stressed and emotional which can make it easier for you to stay away from triggers that make you want to use tobacco products.   Finally focus on the present, make sure you deal with one urge and choice at time.  When you feel an urge pause and reflect and ask yourself why you feel this way and what are some other ways to deal with this situation besides using tobacco products?  Every day you don’t use tobacco products is an accomplishment take pride in yourself for doing this and realize how much you have accomplished by quitting!

Image result for the great american smokeout

Take the Pledge to Stop using Tobacco Products!

On November 17th the American Cancer Society puts on the Great American Smokeout an annual event where people pledge to not smoke for that day.  The Outreach Education Office and the BSU Peer Educators will be holding a tabling event that day with activities and give-aways as well as resources to help you quit using tobacco products on Thursday November 17th in the RCC Lobby from 11am-2pm.  This is the perfect start date for you to quit smoking.  Start creating your plan now and use some strategies and practices discussed in this article to get your plan started!  To learn more about Outreach Education as well as the BSU Peer Educators: like the BSU Outreach Education page on Facebook, follow us on Instagram and Twitter @bsuoutreach, and check out our calendar for upcoming events at:


Who doesn’t love a good night’s sleep?

by Katie Bogusz on October 11, 2016



Sometimes it feels like there is nothing better than a good night’s sleep. This is especially true when you find your schedule jam packed with classes, work, extracurricular activities, and other responsibilities.  Even if you are finding enough time to get the recommended 7 to 9 hours of sleep each night you can still have trouble falling asleep or staying asleep.  Fear not though!  Here are some helpful tips on getting a better night’s sleep…

The Art of Napping

The nap, one of the most sought after and prized acts. Many find they are not able to nap, nap too often, or sometimes feel even more exhausted then they did before they took the nap.  In order to make sure you are getting the most out of your nap it’s best to keep them on the shorter side, between ten and twenty minutes.  This information has been confirmed by a study from Amber Brooks and Leon Lack of Flinders University, who found that, “Overall, the 10-minute nap was the most effective afternoon nap duration…for improving alertness and performance following mild nocturnal sleep restriction”.  Therefore it’s best to keep naps short to give yourself that quick energy boost.

But remember to always know yourself. If you suffer from insomnia it’s probably best not to nap during the day.  You want to make sure you are very tired when bed time rolls around.  Instead of napping, try doing some relaxing activities like yoga or deep breathing exercises to settle your mind.  Also make sure to know your schedule, if you usually go to bed early take a nap mid-day or if you like to stay up late take one later in the afternoon.  Naps can be a great tool, but always remember to use them wisely!


How to wind down before you lie down

The thought of trying to fall asleep can strike fear in some, so how is it that some people can just hit the pillow and fall right asleep? One of the best ways to fall asleep more easily is by doing some activities to reduce stress before you go to bed and even throughout the day.  I know this sounds like a broken record, but try to exercise regularly.  It doesn’t have to be anything too intensive or time consuming, just going for a nice walk in the morning can be helpful.  But, make sure to do it three hours before bed time because you don’t want to have all that adrenaline pumping through you when you try to go to sleep at night.

Think of some activities that you do to relax and start doing them an hour or a couple of minutes before bed. Take a nice hot bath or shower, meditate, read a book, or drink some calming tea (without caffeine!).  Just try to make sure you aren’t looking at your laptop, tablet, or smart phone right before you go to sleep because the artificial light they emit actually makes it harder to fall asleep and stay asleep.  Also if you find yourself worrying about everything (homework, work duties, deadlines, etc.) right before you go to sleep try keeping a “worry journal” next to your bed.  If you start stressing and worrying, write down what’s bothering you so at least it’s not all in your head anymore and the thoughts can be kept in the journal.

What NOT to do before bedtime

There are also some substances you should avoid before bedtime because they can affect how fast you fall asleep as well as stay asleep. Caffeine is a big one, make sure not to have any coffee, tea, soft drink, or food with caffeine in it after 3pm.  Although a lot of people enjoy their coffee, it’s best to stick with it during the morning and early afternoon hours.

Alcohol is another big one. Although alcohol does seem to make you sleepy at first, it is after all a depressant, it may make you wakeful later in the night.  It can also cause you to wake up earlier than you would like and it can negatively affect the amount of REM sleep you get at night.  So make sure to not drink too close to bedtime and not to drink in excess.

Nicotine is another a substance to avoid right before bedtime. Nicotine actually disrupts sleep more than caffeine does because it is also a stimulant.  Smokers take longer to fall asleep and find themselves waking up more often throughout the night.  So although there are many reasons to quit smoking, lack of sleep could be a big motivator!


Feel ready to sleep tonight?

Try following some of these recommended tips because sleeping can have a large effect on your physical and mental health! Not getting enough sleep can negatively affect your memory, concentration, and motivation as well as putting you at a greater risk of stomach aches and headaches.  Like the BSU Outreach Education page on Facebook, follow us on Instagram and Twitter @bsuoutreach, and check out our calendar for upcoming events at:


Brooks, Amber, and Leon Lack. “A Brief Afternoon Nap Following Nocturnal Sleep Restriction: Which Nap Duration Is Most Recuperative?” SLEEP 9.6 (2006): 831-40. Web. 23 Sept. 2016.



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