Resolved to Quit Smoking? An Association Shares Some Tips
A resolution that many people are committed to in 2016: Quitting smoking. The American Lung Association has some tips to help them achieve success.
With the countdown to the new year comes the inevitable list of easily broken New Year’s resolutions from losing weight to spending more time with family to quitting smoking. For the latter resolution, the American Lung Association (ALA) has five tips for those smokers trying to kick the deadly habit.
Only 4 to 7 percent of individuals who try to quit cold turkey are successful in avoiding cigarettes for up to one year, according to the association. So make a plan unique to your own lifestyle to help break the addiction.
The association’s Freedom From Smoking program helps participants progressively quit by taking them through modules with lessons and accompanying assignments building up to a Quit Day. It helps set that quit date, identify triggers and urges, and motivate the person throughout the quitting process.
ALA suggests individuals who are trying to quit smoking talk to a doctor about the process they are beginning. Doctors can help set up quitting plans and provide information on smoking medications. After all, smokers are twice as likely to quit with the advice and support of doctors and healthcare professionals. An app from the American Lung Association and Pfizer, Quitters Circle, helps connect users with those healthcare providers.
Quitters should look to join a support group either online or in-person. Tackling this resolution with fellow quitters can help the participant fight the urges and stay on track, especially during the most difficult part of the whole journey—the first seven to 10 days. The mobile app’s social community or the Freedom From Smoking program’s in-person meet-ups offer a place where quitters can encourage each other during the process.
The association said 80 percent of quitters agree that support from friends, family, or coworkers is a significant aspect of successfully quitting smoking. Don’t be afraid to involve friends and family as they can be the best cheerleaders when things are tough and can even follow along with your progress on the app.
Sometimes the urge is too strong to fight, and you have a cigarette. But try again and don’t give up. “Slip-ups—having a puff, or smoking one or two cigarettes—are common but don’t mean that a quitter has failed,” the association said. “Each person needs to find the right combination of techniques for them. The important thing is to keep trying to quit, until you quit for good.”