Wednesday, January 8, 2014

Tips To Quit Smoking

Smoking has many health risks, including lung disease, heart and blood vessel disease, stroke, cataracts and lung cancer. It is not only smokers who are affected by smoking but nonsmokers as well. According to the National Cancer Institute, each year, secondhand smoke is responsible for an estimated 3,000 lung cancer deaths among U.S. nonsmokers. In order to keep yourself and others healthy, consider different types of medication and therapy to help you to stop smoking.


There are several medications that you can take to help you stop smoking. One way is through nicotine replacement therapy. This involves the use of nicotine substitutes such as nicotine gum (Nicoderm CQ, Nicotrol, Habitrol), the nicotine patch (Nicorette), nasal sprays (Nicotrol NS), nicotine lozenge (Commit) or inhalers (Nicotrol). The American Heart Association believes that these replacement therapies, which work by delivering small and steady doses of nicotine into the body without the tars and poisonous gases found in cigarettes, can help smokers quit while relieving some of the withdrawal symptoms.

Non-nicotine medications intended for short-term use include bupropion (Wellbutrin, Zyban) and varenicline (Chantix). These anti-smoking pills can help you to stop smoking by reducing cravings and withdrawal symptoms. Although approved by the Food and Drug Administration, these prescription medications can cause serious side effects, such as insomnia, headaches, nausea, vomiting and gas.

For medication to work effectively, however, it should be combined with a comprehensive smoking cessation program to help smokers focus on breaking their psychological addiction and to learn new behaviors and coping skills.


An alternative to nicotine replacement therapy and prescription medications is therapy. There are several different types of therapies depending on your needs and preference.

Hypnosis is done by a hypnotherapist, who tries to increase your negative feelings toward cigarettes. The hypnotherapist places you in a deeply relaxed state, in which you are open to suggestions that strengthen your determination to stop smoking.

Acupuncture is one of the oldest known medical techniques and is a therapy used for a number of ailments. By placing needles in specific spots, acupuncture helps you to stop smoking by triggering the release of endorphins, allowing the body to relax and manage smoking withdrawal symptoms.

Since smoking is believed to be a habitual behavior, behavior therapy helps smokers to stop by learning new coping skills and breaking habits. These are often group behavior therapy programs to learn techniques to stop smoking and to provide mutual support to each other.

Motivational therapy, sometimes reinforced with hypnosis, targets people with mixed feelings about smoking such as knowing that smoking is bad for you, yet not wanting to quit. Motivational therapy can be used to treat addictive habits by supporting and encouraging a smoker to overcome obstacles and difficulties through motivational suggestions.

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