March 8th marks National No Smoking Day, a day which is observed to encourage all of those who smoke, to give up for one day.
There are many negative health issues related to smoking, research shows that smoking causes 90% of lunch cancers and is responsible for other cancers in the body such as throat, mouth, stomach, bladder and kidneys. Smoking furthermore damages your heart and can have a negative effect on your blood circulation increasing your risk of stroke, heart disease and heart attack.
Today is a great day to kick start stopping smoking, HMT have created a complete guide on tips on how you can stop smoking today.
Think of a Reason
Making the decision to quit smoking isn’t an easy one and it’s something you’ve probably been thinking about for a while.
There will, of course, be times when you question why you stopped smoking but before you reach for another cigarette remember the reasons why you quit in the first place.
The best way to do this is to make a list of all the reasons why you’re quitting whether it be to save money, health issues or to improve the health of your children, carry it around with you then whenever you feel the need to smoke, take a look at the list.
Alcohol, stress and social situations are all triggers for smoking a cigarette to eliminating yourself from these situations will help to keep you on track.
Just for the first couple of weeks whilst you’re new to quitting, try to not drink of limit yourself to one or two as when we become drunk, we may lose control and give into temptation.
If you have a stressful job or suffer from stress in general, find other ways to relieve your stress such as going for a walk or taking 5 minutes alone.
Clean Your House
You may not realise it but cigarette smoke sticks to everything, your clothes, hair, carpet and upholstery. When you decide to quit smoking, give your home and belongings a good clean as to eliminate the smell from tempting. This clean is also good for your mind, it signifies a fresh start and will have you feeling positive about your decision to quit.
Change Your Diet
Did you know that certain foods and drink make cigarettes taste better?
Fizzy drinks, alcohol and meat make cigarettes taste better so why not opt for more water, vegetables and cheese which are proven to make cigarettes taste horrible.
You don’t have to become a vegetarian or stop eating your favourite foods and drink, maybe just avoid them whilst you’re trying to give up.
Don’t Give Up Trying
It’s unlikely that the first time you quit smoking will be the last. Many will try numerous times but it’s important you don’t give up trying. No matter how many times you try, you still recognise you need to quit which is sometimes the hardest part of the battle.
If you struggle with sticking to giving up, then challenge yourself to beat your last duration every time, this will test your endurance and help you to completely give up in the future,
Giving up smoking is no easy feat so it is important to reward yourself.
It is up to you how you do this, and what you reward yourself with, if you have a favourite food or sweet you like then reward yourself at certain intervals say at the end of the first day, then at the end of the first week, then two weeks later, then a month, then three months and so on. This will spur you on and help to motivate you.
Tackle the Craving
There will be certain times of the day when your cravings flair up.
These cravings typically last around 5 minutes so before you give up, complete a five-minute motivator to get you through the craving, this can be anything from doing a puzzle at your desk to having a dance on a night out or going to the bathroom to fix your makeup instead.
Get Some Support
Your friends and family are your biggest support system so utilise them.
Let them know you’re trying to quit and they will make the right decisions to eliminate any temptation away from you and help to motivate you when cravings kick in. if you’re having a down day or struggling to resist the urge to smoke, give them a call and talk to someone.
There are many benefits that come with not smoking, the most important being improved health and wellbeing. Other benefits including saving money, fresher breath, reducing the risk of passive smoke to those around you and overall improving your mental health and wellbeing.
There are a number of support services out there to help you quit if you’re struggling, speak to your GP who will be able to advise you further.