Silence The Stress Of Smoking Cessation- Ten Tips To Help You Cope

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You have finally decided to quit smoking, and you feel great! Of course, it is only day one, and at this point it is still easy to feel on top of the world. You know about all the folks who tried and failed to quit, and you have heard the horror stories of grumpy behavior, excessive weight gain, and the knock down, drag out fights with spouses, significant others, and children that accompanied this valiant effort. Looking at your cigarettes, as you crush them into the trash can, it is hard to imagine that a little piece of rolled up paper and some dried plants in the middle could wreak so much havoc in anyone?s life, but all the stories you have heard are based on truth!

Cigarette smoke contains the highly addictive substance nicotine. This drug?s ability to addict its users has been compared to the habit forming agents of heroine and cocaine. Studies have proven that nicotine directly affects the dopamine production in the user?s body, and the latter is responsible for allowing a body to feel pleasure, comfort ability, and overall physical content. The vicious cycle that many long-term smokers have discovered is the fact that the drug in the long term depresses the brain?s ability to generate adequate amounts of this substance, and so the smoker will seek to compensate for this shift by introducing greater amounts of nicotine into her or his system. While it may briefly kick start the brain to release more dopamine, it simultaneously causes so much bodily destruction that the effect of the former is negligible in light of the pain and illness generated by the latter. Additionally, the addiction is not simply physical but its severity is also linked to the habits that surround the activity of smoking. The activity is soon associated with certain activities, such as eating, driving, or reading, and a smoker who is trying to kick the habit finds temptations sore whenever she or he engages in any or all of these activities.

While it is good and comforting to know that you will very likely encounter this distress, it does little to silence the stress of smoking cessation, and almost nothing to help you cope with it. To this end, here are ten tips that will make the road to quitting permanently not an easy one to traverse, but most certainly more livable, healthy, and perhaps even a bit more comfortable:

No matter what the purists are saying, nicotine replacement therapy, such as the use of the gum or patch, is a good alternative for those who face extreme irritability, anxiety, and even disturbed sleep patterns. Some decry the uses of replacements as weakness, but let?s face it, you are trying to quit smoking, this alone makes you strong and determined in your own right!

Be aware of the habit that most tempts you to smoke, and change it. Let?s say you like to have a cigarette with your evening cupcake in the easy chair. Change the habit by having a different snack (preferably a healthy one, such as some sunflower seeds or pistachios) in a different location, such as the sofa. This activity is not associated with smoking and will thus help you to avoid some temptations.

Take up a new hobby, such as the Yoga class you always wanted to go to, the drawing class that held your interest or maybe the evening lecture at the local library. Get out of the house and enjoy new things!

It is 3 o?clock in the morning and you need help ? drop a dime! Did you know that there are actually help-lines that are staffed by trained individuals to help quitters deal with the biggest temptations and cravings? Call 1-800-ACS-2345 to get the number for your local counseling service.

Enlist support from friends and family. Let them know that you are quitting and that they should absolutely positively not give in when you ask them for a cigarette.

Consider hypnosis if all else fails.

Acupuncture is another great alternative for those who have a hard time dealing with the cravings.

Delay giving in to the urge. Let?s say your temptation is acute and you are all but on your way to corner store to buy more cigarettes. Tell yourself to wait for fifteen minutes. While it may appear that you are giving in to your craving, it still leaves you in control and takes off the edge just a bit. Usually this little trick will allow you to occupy yourself for fifteen minutes, and by the time this period has elapsed, the urge has probably lessened considerably.

Educate yourself on the process of smoking cessation. And educated quitter is a prepared quitter. Additionally, knowing about the process cuts your stress about what?s next.

Forgive yourself and get back on the wagon if you fall off. It you give in to temptation don?t think it was all for nothing but acknowledge your momentary weakness, find out what made you give in right then and there and avoid this situation in the future.