6 Tips on Quitting Smoking – Essential Information on Nicotine Health Effects, Tobacco and Its Chemical Content.
Quitting smoking is far from easy and requires a certain discipline, especially if you are smoking for several or more years, because you have already developed a real and deep addiction to nicotine. This is why it is important to set some rules that will help you reach your goal: to quit smoking permanently. You should not see these rules as a constraint, but rather as a guiding points that will help you move forward on the path to complete withdrawal from tobacco.
Avoid the contact with cigarettes at all cost. If you don’t resist and touch a cigarette, this will be the best and shortest route to relapse. Any contact with a cigarette may cause an unexpected reaction, months of time fighting with your nicotine cravings and addiction will be lost, and you suddenly end up smoking again. The easiest way to avoid this is to get rid of everything related to smoking: packs of smokes, lighters, ashtrays, remnants of tobacco leaves, etc… All this should disappear from your home and working place, so you are not tempted by anything in your environment.
It is really important to be surrounded by people that support you in your efforts to stop smoking. Do not hesitate to ask the people around you, which are smoking to not smoke in your presence, and refuse their offers of cigarettes!
Adopt new habits which will replace your cigarette breaks with a tea break for example (avoid coffee), or start to chew a gum, if you prefer. The cigarette cravings can disappear as quickly as they appear, so resist the temptation.
While everyone has to find the appropriate method to stop this habit, here are some tips to help you maximize your chances of success.
1. Understand what actually is “smoking addiction”
Quitting smoking is a challenge. Like any challenging endeavor, you must be prepared and determined to complete successfully this challenge. The smoker who decides to quit, must understand the fact, that smoking does not really give him pleasure: it fills only the lack of nicotine, stimulating at the same time the release of dopamine ( an essential neurotransmitter in the brain ).When quitting smoking, it is important to also understand that you do not need the cigarette itself, but the increased release of dopamine, that it causes thanks to its nicotine content. This is why tobacco is indeed a drug .
Here are some of the facts about the ingredients and chemical content of the tobacco, that may help you decide on quitting smoking:
The unburnt tobacco contains over 2500 chemical compounds, including pesticides applied during cultivation and the various additives during the manufacturing process.
In fact, cigarette smoke contains over 4,000 chemicals, from which at least fifty are recognized as carcinogenic in humans and animals. It is therefore not surprising that it is so harmful and is responsible for serious health damaging effects.
Tobacco smoke contains substances such as:
– Carbon monoxide (present in the automobile exhaust gas),
– Acetone (found in paint strippers)
– Hydrogen cyanide (poison used in gas chambers)
– Ammonium (used in fertilizer)
– Mercury, lead
– Cadmium (used in auto mobile batteries)
– Formaldehyde, arsenic, toluene (used in industrial solvents),
– Phosphorus (used in some rat poisons)
Nicotine itself has been used in insecticides and rodenticides(rat poison). It is known as poison since the beginning of the 19th century. In humans, the lethal dose is estimated at 40 to 60 mg at one time. Smoking of two packs of cigarettes can bring more nicotine than that in your system, but the dose in such case is greatly diluted and divided into smaller portions, so it doesn’t lead to a lethal results and noticeable effects.
Tobacco smoke is produced from its burning caused by the temperature, which increases to 1000 ° C, when the smoker “pulls” from the cigarette.
Whether you decide to stop gradually or by a sudden cessation, you must go through several psychological stages. First, it is essential to opt out of certain bad habits, such as smoking after meals, smoking during a break at work, smoking when you go out with friends, etc … For many smokers, smoking is part of a daily ritual, which they must perform. For example, start by differentiating the cigarettes you are smoking from the other habits that you enjoy and make you really happy, still keeping in mind that all cigarette cravings are only caused by your nicotine addiction. It will then be easier to establish new healthier habits, without cigarettes.
If you feel that your cravings for nicotine are too strong, you can turn to nicotine replacements like: nicotine patches, nicotine gum, electronic cigarettes and inhalers that will mitigate these cravings. There are some negative effects that you may feel in the quitting process: irritability, nervousness, anxiety, depression, concentration problems, sleep disturbances, increased appetite, weight gain, irresistible urge to smoke…, and the substitutes mentioned above will be of great help overcoming these effects.
3. The health factor
When you stop smoking, consider the many benefits this will have on your health, which will serve you as a significant motivation to accomplish your goal. We now know that tobacco is responsible for many serious health disorders such as cardiovascular diseases, various types of cancers, including lung cancer, infertility and chronic bronchitis. Nevertheless, smoking cessation can correct these increased risks. For example, immediately after you stop smoking the risk of heart attack decreases significantly. One year after quitting, the risk is halved. After 5 years of abstinence, the risk is the same as that of a person who has never smoked.
4. Don’t forget the financial benefit from smoking cessation
Consider also the financial factor and the amount of money you will save when you quit smoking. Set aside the money you saved and treat yourself with something healthy, that you really enjoy and thus limit the frustration that may follow quitting smoking .
Other benefits that may also come into consideration are the regain and full use of senses such as smell and taste, which are quite pleasant changes that will come when you stop taking a poison like the tobacco. Quitting smoking also helps you to restore normal breathing, an important motivation especially if you are sporting.
5. Misconceptions about cigarettes…
Contrary to popular belief , smoking does not have stress relieving effect. Most smokers say that smoking helps them to relax, which is false, because it has been proven that smoking has anxiogenic effects(makes you more anxious). Recent study has shown that smokers are about 5 times more likely to suffer from anxiety that nonsmokers. In fact, the urge to smoke arises, when the body lacks nicotine and if you don’t have cigarette on hand, this can make you nervous and angry.
Smoking does have some appeasing effect, but it’s minimal and brings no benefit to your life, especially to your longevity! The quality of life of the smokers appears again to be greatly reduced compared to this of non-smokers, because they do not necessarily depend on an external substance in order to feel good.
6. Determine a fixed date to quit smoking
This step is both the simplest and the most complicated to implement, it can be hard to decide and set yourself a date to stop smoking, but doing so you can greatly increase your motivation to continue the preparation as this way you have already done some work in advance. The easiest way to adhere to this date, when you decide when will that be, is to set it at the beginning of the week, or at the beginning of the month, so you can quickly assess your progress and the result from your efforts, which is paramount.
It is also a good way to protect your family and prepare them and yourself for the change. Warn your relatives and friends before stopping cigarettes, that way you will avoid ending up in uncomfortable situations. They will be prepared and will understand the changes in your mood, irritability and all other negative effects of nicotine deprivation.
Finally, and most importantly, keep your morale high! Quitting smoking is a difficult stage of your life of course, but the benefits to be non smoker are enormous and the game is definitely worth the candle. So brace yourself, and don’t allow the effects of nicotine deprivation to stop you from hanging out with your friends.
When you think of the last cigarette you smoke you must be determined and resist the temptation. You may feel that this is really the end of an era for you … But you have to accept it, move on with your life and understand that it’s the beginning of another one, which is healthier, without dependence and nicotine addiction.Tags: cigarette, health, Nicotine, smoking, Tobacco