How to Cope
Quitting can be tough—both mentally and physically. You can overcome these temporary challenges by being prepared. Here are some tips and strategies to help you cope.
You use tobacco because you like it, right? Maybe. But there are other reasons, or triggers, that can make you feel like you need it too. By understanding where... READ MORE >
You use tobacco because you like it, right? Maybe. But there are other reasons, or triggers, that can make you feel like you need it too. By understanding where, when, and why you light up or chew, you can plan ahead for those times. An easy way to sort this out is to write it down - for at least 3 days.
- Every time you smoke or chew, write down the time, place, and what you were doing.
- Rank the need. Did you really need it? Sort of need it? Or, didn’t really need it.
- Make note of your mood. Were you in a good mood? A so-so or blah mood? Or a bad mood?
Quick tip: order a Quit Guide. It’s free and it contains “pack tracks.” These easy to use cards are about the size of a pack of cigarettes so you can keep the cards with your cigarettes or chew to make recording easy. If you enroll in the QuitLine phone coaching program, you’ll also receive a free Quit Guide and other support materials with lots of helpful information.
Dealing with Depression & Feelings
Anyone can get depressed, but we know that tobacco users are more likely to get depressed than other types of people. Depression is more than feeling sad or... READ MORE >
Anyone can get depressed, but we know that tobacco users are more likely to get depressed than other types of people. Depression is more than feeling sad or having a bad day. People with depression usually feel down‚ blue‚ or sad all the time and may not want to do things that used to be fun. They might be easily frustrated or restless. They may not be sleeping well or are sleeping too much, or eating more or less than they used to. They may even feel worthless or have thoughts about dying or hurting themselves.
But, the good news is that there are treatments that work for both depression and smoking. If you find that you are feeling really down after quitting tobacco – talk about it with friends, family‚ and your doctor.
You can find out more about depression and tobacco use at the CDC.
You can also call the QuitLine and talk with a Quit Coach. Our trained staff can help you deal with feelings of depression or anxiety related to quitting. You’re not alone. Reach out. We’re ready to help.
Weight Management & Cravings
Concerns about gaining weight and managing cravings are some of the most common roadblocks to quitting. But there are lots of tricks you can use to help... READ MORE >
Concerns about gaining weight and managing cravings are some of the most common roadblocks to quitting. But there are lots of tricks you can use to help avoid weight gain and beat those cravings! Here are just a few:
- Exercise! It helps you burn calories faster and can help you deal with the stress of quitting too.
- When you feel hungry, drink a large glass of water instead or chew gum.
- Eat slowly and don’t eat on the run or in front of the TV because you may end up eating more.
- Be sure to stock up on healthy snacks so you have something else to go to when those cravings hit.
- Do something else! Get up and stretch. Wash your face. Brush your teeth. Trim your nails. Call a friend.
Quick tip: order a Quit Guide. It’s free and it contains strategies and activities you can use right away. If you enroll in the QuitLine phone coaching program, you’ll also receive a free Quit Guide and other support materials filled with lots of helpful information. And don’t forget, people who use a Quit Coach are 2x more likely to quit and stay quit!
Quitting is stressful. You can expect to have uncomfortable feelings, being tempted to use tobacco and having to face withdrawal and cravings. Being prepared... READ MORE >
Quitting is stressful. You can expect to have uncomfortable feelings, being tempted to use tobacco and having to face withdrawal and cravings. Being prepared will help. Here are a few things to keep in mind:
- Withdrawal is your body getting used to being without nicotine. You might feel depressed, crabby, anxious, nervous, restless, or have trouble thinking clearly. Don’t give in to the temptation to use tobacco. Remember, these feelings are temporary.
- Cravings are short but intense urges to use tobacco and they usually only last a few minutes. Plan ahead with a short list of activities or distractions to keep you from giving in.
- Get rid of ALL tobacco products and anything that might make you think of using tobacco. Clean out your car, home, and work. Don’t save anything “just in case.” If it’s not there you can’t use it.
- Don’t switch to other tobacco products – they ALL contain harmful chemicals. Don’t be fooled: low-tar, light, E-cigarettes, vape pens, smokeless tobacco products, pipes, cigars, cigarillos, hookah pipes, bidi and clove cigarettes all hurt your health.
- Don’t go it alone. Tell family, friends, doctors, and co-workers that you’re ready to quit. Get support. Call the QuitLine and work with a Quit Coach. Quitting is tough, but it’s easier with a support network.
Quick tip: Use the Four D’s to Fight Cravings
- Delay. The urge to smoke will pass whether you smoke or not.
- Deep breathe.
- Drink water.
- Do something to take your mind off smoking.
Don’t panic, slips happen. Don’t be discouraged, many people slip – especially in the first three months. Do be careful not to use your slip as an excuse to start... READ MORE >
Don’t panic, slips happen. Don’t be discouraged, many people slip – especially in the first three months. Do be careful not to use your slip as an excuse to start back up again. Here are some things to keep in mind:
- It’s a small setback. Don’t give up, you haven’t failed, you just need to get right back on the non-tobacco track again.
- Don’t be too hard on yourself. A slip won’t make you a tobacco user again. Just be careful to not to give up and don’t fall into the trap of saying, “I blew it so I might as well smoke the rest of this pack.”
- Remember to be proud of EVERY minute, day, or week you went without a slip.
- Identify your triggers. What lead to your slip? Think about ways you can cope with those triggers the next time they come up.
- Learn from your slip and ask for help. Reach out to a friend or family member for support… or call a QuitLine Coach. You don’t have to do this alone.