Lots of people trying to stop smoking describe a sensation of facing a brick wall — they’re desperate to quit but their fear of how they’ll cope without cigarettes seems impossible to overcome. Here are some suggestions for combating common concerns.
How can I deal with cravings after I stop smoking?
Cigarette addiction is so strong that most people struggle to quit using willpower alone. The good news is you can reduce your cravings and withdrawal symptoms with therapeutic nicotine products, such as Nicorette®. By swapping cigarettes for these “clean” sources of nicotine, it will be easier for you to focus on creating your life as a non-smoker.
I’m worried I’ll be tempted to smoke again in some situations.
Everyone encounters hurdles when they try to quit. One of these is being tempted to smoke in situations where you are used to having a cigarette — whether it’s after a meal or being stuck in a traffic jam. A good quitting plan can help you prepare to tackle these hurdles, and to remind you to use the support you have at hand when you need it most. You don’t need to draft a quitting plan from scratch — a quitting plan will be provided with your Nicorette® Committed Quitters® membership. So be sure to visit committedquitters.nicorette.com any time you need tips, tools, or support to help you quit successfully.
I'm concerned about how therapeutic nicotine products (also known as nicotine replacement therapy, or NRT) will affect me.
Aren't therapeutic nicotine products as harmful as cigarettes?
No, therapeutic nicotine products have an excellent safety record and are much safer than continuing to smoke.
Isn’t the nicotine contained in a therapeutic nicotine product just as addictive?
Well, let’s picture what happens when you smoke a cigarette. The nicotine goes from the cigarette into your lungs and straight to your brain within seconds. It’s a powerful dose with a strong effect, as every smoker knows. However patches containing therapeutic nicotine deliver a far safer, lower level of nicotine to relieve cravings and ease withdrawal symptoms. Therapeutic nicotine products are designed to provide a temporary source of nicotine that is gradually reduced over time until you are nicotine-free.
I don't want to gain weight after quitting
While most people gain a little weight when they quit, there are many ways to avoid this — and some people actually find they lose weight as they feel more energetic and start to exercise or walk more regularly.
Instead of snacking more to replace the sensation of putting something in your mouth, try sucking on straws, toothpicks, or sugar-free sweets, and drink six to eight glasses of water a day.
But when you do snack, replace fatty foods with celery sticks, carrots, or other non-fat snacks. Just don’t let your healthier eating habits turn into full-blown “dieting.” Experience shows that attempting two major life changes at the same time can lead to failure at both, so wait at least two to three months after quitting before focusing on weight loss.
How will I cope with stress while I'm quitting?
It’s actually a myth that smoking helps combat stress — in fact, chemicals in cigarettes increase your heart rate and your blood pressure.
Work out how to handle stressful situations in advance by talking to friends and family about the different ways they cope. Realize that every problem has a solution that does not involve smoking. Learn to step back, take a deep breath and say “I can handle this.” It might help to slowly count to ten when stress kicks in. Exercising at the gym is a fantastic stress reliever, as is going for a walk or learning to meditate.