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: my.bridgew.edu/OutreachEducation.

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