Quit for Good! (Heart Health)

Trying to quit smoking isn't easy. It takes a lot of determination and willpower — and you'll still probably slip up from time to time. Here are three quitting methods, however, that have been shown to work, especially when used in combination:
T
he nicotine patch or nicotine gum. The nicotine in the patch or gum passes through the skin into your body. This reduces the craving for nicotine when you stop smoking. Ask your health care provider for advice, and follow the package directions before using any nicotine product.

Get support and encouragement. When you attend a quit-smoking program, you receive counseling and support. This has proven to help. Your family, friends, and health care provider also can offer encouragement and support.

Learn how to handle stress and other conditions that make you want to smoke. Being around other smokers, pressure from deadlines or appointments, getting into an argument, feeling sad or frustrated, and drinking alcohol can all make you want to smoke. The key to handling this urge is to distract yourself from thinking about smoking by doing other things you enjoy, such as listening to music, talking to a friend, walking, or staying busy with another task.

If you continue to struggle in your efforts to quit, consult your doctor for other options. He or she may be able to recommend alternative therapies that have worked for other patients.

B-man