Long-established smoking habits are hard to stop. Nicotine, the primary drug in tobacco, is highly addictive, causing intense cravings and withdrawal symptoms. If you’ve been at it for years, resisting the urge to smoke is likely more challenging.
Study shows that those who started to smoke at an early age tend to develop a severe addiction to nicotine. Fortunately, several strategies and products can help you reduce cigarette consumption and quit successfully.
Below are five alternatives to help you break your nicotine addiction for good. Turn to them whenever you feel like lighting up a cigarette.
1. Physical Activity
Chronic cravings are one of the biggest hurdles when you decide to give up smoking. Your brain gets used to the pleasurable sensations brought by nicotine. When you first stop smoking, your body readjusts to depleted nicotine levels.
As it learns to live without nicotine, you may experience unpleasant physical effects, such as headaches, irritability, and mood swings. You’ll likely need support to overcome your body’s desire for nicotine.
Physical activity is one way to help you with your smoking cessation journey. Because it triggers the release of endorphins—the body’s natural pain reliever—regular exercise promotes a positive feeling in your body. This is an effective way to distract yourself from intense nicotine cravings.
A lot of people use smoking to deal with anxiety and stress. Since fighting nicotine cravings can be stressful, you may easily be tempted to return to your smoking habits. You can’t think well and won’t likely feel good. Mind-body practices can help ease the stress and anxiety that comes with the withdrawal process.
You can better control your thoughts and feelings by practicing deep breathing, yoga, muscle relaxation, and meditation. It also helps increase your ability to stay calm, allowing you to focus on staying nicotine-free. Consequently, you’ll be more able to cope with distressing urges to smoke instead of being controlled by them.
3. Nicotine Patches
Nicotine patches are another tool you can use to quit smoking for good. It can help relieve some of the physical withdrawal effects when trying to kick a smoking habit. Instead of dealing with them, you’ll be able to focus on the psychological aspects of quitting.
A nicotine patch is a small, self-adhesive that you apply on your skin. It releases a small, constant amount of nicotine through the skin into your bloodstream. Nicotine patch helps manage your cravings by replacing the nicotine you usually get from smoking.
Over time, the nicotine level in the patches must gradually decrease until you stop using it permanently. While you buy nicotine patches without a prescription, you should consult your healthcare provider for proper dosing.
4. Nicotine-free Cigarettes
Nicotine-free cigarettes can also be an excellent alternative to help you go through the quitting process. While they look like regular cigarettes, they don’t have intoxicating effects. Instead, their content can help ease some of the difficulties when trying to quit smoking. With nicotine-free cigarettes like the Oklahoma Smokes, you can overcome the urge to smoke and quit for good.
5. Prescription Medicines
Medications can also help increase your chances of quitting permanently. Because they don’t contain nicotine, they can help lessen cravings and withdrawal symptoms. Your doctor can prescribe medications to help you stop smoking. If you decide to use smoking cessation medicines, consult your physician about when to start and how to use them properly.
Get Extra Help to Successfully Quit
No tool or pill can magically make you quit smoking for good. If you want the best fighting chance, combine the alternatives we highlighted here with healthy lifestyle choices and stop-smoking programs. A strong support system from trained professionals and your family can help you quit successfully.