Cigarette smokers crave the nicotine in cigarettes. Giving it up is much harder than simply changing a habit. Your body has to stop craving the nicotine. It is hard to quit, but you can do it. There are many tools that people use to quit smoking. You may find that combining tools works best for you.
There are several steps to quitting. First you get ready to quit. Then you get support to help you. After that, you learn new skills and behaviours to become a non-smoker. For many people, a necessary step is getting and using medicine.
Your doctor will help you set up the plan that best meets your needs. You may want to attend a smoking cessation program to help you quit smoking. When you choose a program, look for one that has proven success. Ask your doctor for ideas. You will greatly increase your chances of success if you take medicine as well as get counselling or join a cessation program.
Some of the changes you feel when you first quit tobacco are uncomfortable. Your body will miss the nicotine at first, and you may feel short-tempered and grumpy. You may have trouble sleeping or concentrating. Medicine can help you deal with these symptoms. You may struggle with changing your smoking habits and rituals. The last step is the tricky one: Be prepared for the smoking urge to continue for a time. This is a lot to deal with, but keep at it. You will feel better.
Follow-up care is a key part of your treatment and safety. Be sure to make and go to all appointments, and call your doctor or nurse call line if you are having problems. It's also a good idea to know your test results and keep a list of the medicines you take.
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Current as of: March 20, 2017
Adam Husney, MD - Family Medicine
& Kathleen Romito, MD - Family Medicine & Michael F. Bierer, MD - Internal Medicine
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