14 Tips For Those First Quit Days

Wouldn’t you like to give up stained teeth, increased facial wrinkles, low energy, holes burned in your clothes, bad breath and a generally bad aroma?

October is Healthy Lung Month, so now is the perfect time to kick the “sticks.” Here are 14 tips to help you get through those first difficult days:

  1. Start a list of reasons you want to quit smoking
  2. Post photos of family and loved ones to remind you of why quitting matters
  3. Plan to be active, like going for a walk, every day, since being activity promotes natural chemicals that help reduce stress and improve your mood
  4. Fill your calendar: stay busy (but avoid those places where you’re tempted to smoke)
  5. Avoid foods and drinks that you associate with smoking
  6. Limit caffeine. Sometimes its effects are magnified when you’re breaking an addiction to nicotine
  7. Start a list of how not smoking will benefit you (you’ll feel more in control, you’ll save money, food will taste better, etc.)
  8. Go somewhere you can’t smoke (maybe to a movie or a store)
  9. Build a support team – a friend who has successfully quit smoking is a good choice to have on your team
  10. Stop any negative emotions before they get out of control. If you’re stressed, angry or frustrated, develop coping strategies like calling a friend or doing something you really enjoy
  11. Stay away from people who aren’t supportive or who are likely to undermine your efforts to quit (if you have to be around them, hand them your list from #1, above)
  12. Brush your teeth frequently
  13. Put something else in your mouth: sip cold water, eat small meals, chew sugar-free gum, try a piece of hard candy or a healthy snack like raw vegetables
  14. Remember the first two weeks will be the hardest. If you slip up, take time to analyze what happened, develop a strategy to handle that situation differently next time, and get right back on track. Breaking an addiction is not always a smooth process, but it’s well worth doing.

At Gwinnett Medical Center we know that early detection can often lead to better outcomes when it comes to lung cancer. GMC’s Cancer Institute’s lung screening program is recognized by the Lung Cancer Alliance as a center of Excellence. Learn more about this important program at gwinnettmedicalcenter.org/lung.


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