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Six Steps To Quit Smoking

Many smokers regret their inability to Quit Smoking, although some are eager to blame their hacking cough on a persistent summer cold or their high blood pressure on the stress of daily life. Such smokers could not face the fact that their real problem is smoking.

Most smokers begin in adolescence, when the possibilities of illness and death may appear too remote to be real. The teenager lights up occasionally because his or her friends do. Cigarettes have become a symbol of swaggering maturity or a support against outward signs of shyness or awkwardness in social situations. Moreover, from occasional cigarette smoking without inhibition to heavy smoking usually occurs so gradual, that young people never quite realize when they actually became "hooked". If you are a smoker and have adolescent or preadolescent children, you can at least set them a good example by quitting now. But remember that moralizing or preaching is not likely to be productive since adolescents are rebels by nature. Tell them the fact smoking is an expensive habit, in terms of both money and health.

Although all health risks associated with smoking decrease as soon as you stop smoking, no matter how long you have been smoking. Your chances of having a heart attack drop rapidly. After 5 non-smoking years, the risk of premature death from smoking related diseases is almost reduced. After 15 years the risk has all but disappeared. Research about smoking indicates that while nearly four out of five smokers want to quit, only about a quarter finally give up the habit. However, most of those who fail to stop smoking are those who are not willing to pay the price.

If you really want to Quit Smoking, I suggest you follow the following steps.

Step one: Analyze your smoking habit. Prepare a chart of cigarette you usually smoke in 24 hour period, along with the times when you almost automatically light up, such as with every cup of coffee, after every meal, or as you begin the day's work. Give your self 2 or 3 weeks in which to study when and why you "need" cigarettes, so that you actually pay attention to every puff you take.

Step two: Make up your mind there will be no turning back. List all the reasons you want to stop smoking, including all the good things that will happen when you have Quit Smoking. For instance, you will probably be better able to taste your food and you may have no morning cough. You need to convince your self that the effort is worth making before you start.

Step three: Name the day, circle it on your calendar, and give up totally on that day. This is the most successful and the long run, least painful way to break the smoking habit. It helps if family members or close friends can act together, giving up on the same day and sustaining one another through the difficult days. It may help to choose a time when your usual routine is being changed for another reason {for example, just as you go on a vacation}. Some smokers have found that it helps to make a great show of quitting by announcing it to the world at large. This makes it a matter of pride not to succumb to temptation in a difficult day.

Step four: Feel free to use object you can as a cigarette substitute during the difficult days. It may help to chew gum or use some of the anti-smoking tablets that can be bought without prescription. If your hand seems empty without a cigarette between your fingers, hold a pencil or pen. In addition, practice one of the relaxation exercises to ease the tensions that smoking seemed to relieve for you. It often helps to give up, at least temporarily, some of the activities that you associate with smoking. For instance, if you habitually smoke while having a drink at the neighborhood bar, stay away for a while.
Step five: Enjoy not Smoking. Do not forget that you are saving several amount of money a week. You can give your self a positive reward by saving up the unspent money to buy some things you could not otherwise easily afford.

Step six: During the difficult early weeks, eat as much as you want of low-calorie food and drink. Your appetite is almost certain to increase, and when you are feeling tense and restless (the natural result of trying to overcome an addictive habit), you may often be impelled to nibble at something, so you will probably put on a few pound. Remember that the first 4 weeks are the hardest. You can expect to lose your intense craving for tobacco after 8 weeks, and you can then begin to eat more sparingly if necessary.

By: Uchechukwu Ifeanyi Ifo

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