If you’re trying to quit smoking, cravings are going to be a constant challenge. But with the right strategies and support, you’ll be able to beat those cravings and kick the habit for good!
Understand your smoking triggers
After you have quit smoking, you will find that it is easier to deal with your triggers. It is important to understand what makes you want to smoke. The more often you do this, the easier it will become for you not to smoke when someone starts talking about it.
If someone is talking about smoking, use these techniques:
- Remind yourself that cigarettes are an unhealthy habit and not something worth taking up again.
- Try to think of something else so that you are distracted from thinking about smoking or being tempted by others who are smoking around them (this is a good time for meditation).
Get support — it really works
If you’re quitting smoking, it’s important to get support from friends and family. They can help you cope with cravings and temptations.
You can also join a support group, or use apps and websites to help you quit.
Seeing a doctor, going to drug rehab, or visiting a therapist are other options. They might prescribe medicines that will help you stop smoking without getting side effects like weight gain, dry mouth, or headaches caused by nicotine replacement therapy (NRT). Some people find that using NRT helps them quit smoking completely — but if they start using it again in the future, their chances of getting cancer go back up again! So try not to touch the stuff! It’s recommended that you seek professional help, and look for an affordable rehab.
Finally: ask for help from the health professional(s) at your local hospital/clinic/library/school/etcetera…
Learn stress management and relaxation techniques.
Stress management and relaxation techniques are essential to helping you quit smoking. Try any or all of the following:
- Breathing exercises
- Massage therapy
With these tools in hand, you’ll have no trouble quitting smoking!
Drink less alcohol.
Alcohol is an addictive depressant and it can be a major distraction from quitting smoking. The relaxed feeling and confidence boost you get from alcohol will only make you more likely to smoke, so try to cut down on your drinking.
If you do drink, try sticking to one or two drinks per night. If you do this for several weeks (month or more), then maybe it’s okay to go back up to three drinks per night if that’s what your body needs at that point in time.
Don’t keep craving-inducing items in your house or car.
- Remove all smoking paraphernalia from your house and car.
- If you have any cigarettes or lighters in your house or car, throw them out. There are plenty of places to buy cigarettes, lighters, and other smoking paraphernalia available online or in stores; you don’t need them around the house anymore!
Change your environment to avoid smoking.
- Avoid places where you smoke. If there are places you tend to smoke, do your best to avoid them.
- Don’t hang out with people who smoke. If your friends/family members are smokers, it is important that they understand why quitting is so important and help support you in this endeavor.
- Get rid of cigarettes, lighters, and matches in your house or apartment as soon as possible—don’t even leave them lying around! If necessary (for example when driving), keep a pack of gum or mints instead of actual cigarettes with you at all times.
- Remove ashtrays from anywhere they might be used (including cars).
Keep your hands and mouth busy.
If you’re one of the many people who have trouble keeping their hands and mouth busy when they’re trying not to smoke, here are some ways you can quit smoking by having something else in your hands:
- Chew gum. It’s a good way to keep your mouth occupied, and it also has some mild health benefits.
- Crack your knuckles. This is a trick that works especially well if you’re wearing long sleeves! It can be an effective way to keep yourself from going into full-on cigarette mode while still giving in to the urge for nicotine (or just keeping yourself entertained).
- Play with a pen or pencil–especially if it has no eraser on it! Just don’t break off any points like I did when I was in college. Once that happens, there’s nothing left but sharpened wood inside the barrel…which makes me think of another thing that could occupy my fingers at this point: cutting my own hair with scissors while wearing oven mitts so as not to hurt myself even more than necessary…but then again maybe if I get creative enough someday soon maybe I’ll invent something amazing such as [insert product name here] which solves all these problems once and for all (and hopefully doesn’t break too easily).
Practice the 4 Ds when you feel an urge to smoke — delay, deep breathe, drink water, and do something else.
- Take a few deep breaths.
- Drink water.
- Do something else.
Not smoking is the best way to deal with a nicotine craving, so if you feel an urge to smoke, distract yourself by doing something else for as long as possible.
Eat small, healthy snacks that are low in sugar.
Eat small, healthy snacks that are low in sugar. Eating healthy snacks can help you fight cravings. Try fruit, nuts, and veggies. Avoid junk food such as potato chips and other salty snacks; they are high in salt which causes thirst and dehydration. Also, try not to eat too much fat because it can make you feel full faster than water or other drinks with no calories. Finally, avoid eating too much dairy because the calcium and protein in milk can cause your body to produce more mucus which may lead to more coughing and wheezing due to smoking!
Avoid people who are smoking if you can’t yet resist temptation.
Another way to prevent a relapse is to avoid people who are smoking if you can’t yet resist temptation. While it’s unlikely that someone close to you will be smoking in front of your face and challenging you not to smoke, it is possible that they may do so at some point during your journey. It’s best if they know not to light up around you as soon as possible, but even if they don’t understand how hard this step will be for them or for the two of you together, letting them know that their actions could destroy what progress has been made with quitting smoking is important. This way, everyone involved knows where they stand and won’t be blindsided by potential triggers later down the line when one person’s actions affect another person negatively (such as their own health).
Beating cravings is tough but there are a bunch of ways you can do it.
The first step is to be aware of your cravings and when they happen. You’re going to have to be on the lookout for them because if you don’t notice them, you won’t know how long they last or what triggers them. Once you figure out what causes the cravings, it will help you decide how best to deal with them.
While nicotine itself isn’t particularly addictive (though some would argue otherwise), smoking is a habit that many people find hard at first and even harder over time. Weaning yourself off cigarettes can take several weeks or even months depending on how long you smoked in the past, so don’t get discouraged if it doesn’t go perfectly the first time around! This guide should give you some helpful tips but remember: quitting smoking isn’t easy – but neither is anything worthwhile!
If you’re ready to beat your cravings, it’s important that you find the right techniques and support for yourself. Remember that quitting smoking is a journey and, just like on any other journey, your progress will not always be smooth. But don’t let this deter you from making an attempt at quitting! And remember: it’s never too late to start again.
Get Help From New Day Rehab
Visit New Day Rehabilitation, one of the most effective rehabs in South Africa. They are an inpatient Gauteng rehab that specializes in drug and alcohol addiction treatment.
They provide a safe space for those detoxing from drugs or alcohol and a framework for addicts and alcoholics to begin their journey of recovery. All clients are treated with respect and dignity and treated with confidentiality by their qualified therapists and network of doctors and psychiatrists.
While many of their clients cater for themselves, they do provide laundry services and all meals for those who need them.
This article was first published at https://topclickblogs.co.za/beat-those-cravings-and-kick-the-habit-for-good/