Share your experience in quitting smoking

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Can anyone share their experience? I don't get cravings when I don't have access to it. But when I have access, I don't seem to be able to stop. i recently quit for 2 days, started again and I finally quit today for good
 
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  • #2
ProfuselyQuarky
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I’ve never smoked but I’ve always wondered what it really takes to quit as well. I know people who’ve struggled to quit for years, taking baby steps, and sometimes failing.

Grandfather, coworker, and bf, however, who were all heavily reliant on cigarettes simply decided that enough was enough and stopped in a day, never looking back.

Makes me question if it only takes desire (?)
 
  • #3
Klystron
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Nicotine in tobacco products is highly addictive compared to its relatively mild calming effect. Young adults seem to be particularly susceptible and marketed (targeted) accordingly. I am constantly amazed at the number of young actors and actresses shown puffing away despite decades of data on the detrimental effects of smoking. These ideas helped me stop
Avoid cues that trigger the urge to smoke.​
De-couple smoking from pleasure such as drinking, eating and sex.​
Avoid other smokers and second-hand products (much easier to do these days).​
Study the terrible effects on your health.​
Clear your lungs with mild exercise. Example: Can you climb stairs without wheezing?​

Good luck and do not judge yourself. Thank yourself each morning you wake up smoke free.
 
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  • #4
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I smoked for 14 years. I caught pneumonia and quit smoking for a week while the lungs cleared. Then I immediately began smoking again as I had missed it.
Two days and a relapse, pneumonia returned with a vengeance. The connection between smoking and death by disease was inescapable.
I would no longer light a cigarette. No declaration or stress, I just would not light a cigarette.
I do not observe this happening with others so I guess quitting is personal.
 
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  • #5
Ibix
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My Dad quit smoking when they raised tax on it at the same time as stepping up nuclear testing (which dates this a bit!). He smoked the ones he had and said the government could get gun money from elsewhere. He'd given up twice before due to cash shortage but started again as soon as the economic pressure passed. But this time he had a good reason (to him - I'm not starting a nuclear weapons debate here!) to quit so he did.

On the other hand I have a colleague who'd been trying to quit as long as I'd known him. Phased reduction, cold turkey, nicotine gum, you name it. One day he said no more, which he'd done before, but and it just stuck that time. He even went on cigarette breaks to chat to his mates and didn't smoke.

And I had another colleague who did phased reduction until she smoked one cigarette per quarter and decided that was good enough. So every January, April, July, October 1st, she smokes one cigarette.

I think you just have to find what works for you.
 
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  • #6
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What worked for me 25 years ago was nicotine gum and cinnamon stick (not candy, the actual spice in stick form) - can use them like a fake cigarette. Helped to break the habit of smoking separately from the nicotine addiction.
 
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  • #7
phinds
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I quit. That's it, I just quit. You just have to decide who's in control, you or the cigarettes. The need for a cigarette was quite intense for several weeks and then less so for months thereafter, but that was irrelevant since I had made the decision not to smoke anymore.

I certainly could be wrong but I've always thought that people who quit and then start up again after a day or a year or whatever, just have not really made the commitment to themselves to quit.
 
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  • #8
It got harder every time I tried to quit.

I started smoking when I was 17 years old. In December of 2018, I stopped smoking entirely but still dosed myself with nicotine with a vaping rig. Finally, I laid the vape down in May of this year (a week after graduation) and went through withdrawals. I'm happy to report that I have been nicotine free for 3 months, which is the longest I've gone in years.

This wasn't my first attempt at quitting. Hell, it wasn't my first attempt at switching to vaping exclusively, let alone completely sans-nicotine. I'm 35 now, which means that I've been addicted to and trying to abstain from this drug for half of my life. Funny thing is this: I don't remember a time when I didn't want to quit. If you're addicted and you want to stop, you know how difficult it can be. It gets in your head (in more ways than one) and refuses to leave until you make the decision to stop and stick to it...and even then, that's no guarantee of lasting success.

My experience throughout countless attempts at quitting has been this: the harsh, visceral withdrawal symptoms hit like a hurricane early on, but within a few days they largely subsided. Afterwards, the psychological symptoms were more apparent, however there were still underlying physical effects...after all, I'd been consistently dosing myself with a stimulant day in and day out for years. My metabolism, mood regulation, energy levels, and general motivation tanked during a period lasting roughly 6 weeks. After that, my body began to stabilize again. This last time was the absolute worst, but I made it through the crazies and am on the road to real recovery. Now the trick (and the challenge) is remembering that hell the next time I want a drag...which will undoubtedly happen.

If you smoke, please do yourself a favor and find your way out as soon as you reasonably can. It is without a doubt the best thing you can do for your overall health. Cheers, and good luck.

EDIT: fixed grammatical error
 
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  • #9
Tom.G
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I started smoking in my teens and stopped around age 30... took three attempts to get there.

I started by tapering off and stopping; but I still carried a pack in my shirt pocket for the 'panic' moments. That led to thinking 'Just one won't hurt', which led to resuming the habit.

Each attempt I learned more about how much dedication and effort it took to quit.

I had a fair idea by the third try of what was needed, and probably was somewhat less addicted by then.

On the third try, I realized that I was automatically reaching for that pack in my shirt pocket and was lighting up before I knew what was happenning. Being in Engineering, I was always carrying pen, pencil, note paper, 6 in. ruler, slide rule in my shirt pocket. That was when you could find dress shirts with two pockets. So I switched which pocket the cigarettes were in. That was enough for me to be aware of when I did the habitual reach for that next smoke. That slowed me down enough make a conscious decision to grab the cigarette or not. I got in the habit of 'Not.'

That was some (unstated) decades ago, but I still appreciate the aroma when someone else lights up!

A couple years later my wife also quit. Don't recall what method she used though. (and I know better than to ask!)
 
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  • #10
DennisN
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I quit smoking a couple of years ago, and I have not regretted it all.
For me, the withdrawal symptoms were most difficult during the first two weeks, and during this time I got very busy, which was helpful since one of the symptoms was restlessness.

The withdrawal symptoms started to gradually fade out after two weeks, and after a month they were gone. I have not been tempted to smoke since then.
In short, I'd say the first two weeks are the most difficult.
I wish you good luck!

I realized that I was automatically reaching for that pack in my shirt pocket
Yeah, I know the feeling! The first day I quit smoking I sat down by the computer and automatically reached with one hand for a cigarette which was not there and another one for an ashtray which was removed from its previous place. I felt like a robot :biggrin:.
 
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  • #11
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I quit smoking a bit over 4 years ago. I had been smoking for some 10 years since I was 13. I got really ill (not like gravely ill), I was out of commission for like 2.5 weeks and when I got better and went to school again I was about to light up and that's when it hit me "I was fine without cigs for over 2 weeks, I don't need them!".

Arguably, I never needed them, but as has been mentioned already, it's like muscle memory, you do it and then you keep doing it.
 
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  • #12
gmax137
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Being in Engineering, I was always carrying ... slide rule in my shirt pocket.

That was some (unstated) decades ago

I think we can put a lower bound on how long ago...
 
  • #13
Ibix
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I think we can put a lower bound on how long ago...
I found a slide rule in my office the other day, just sitting on a meeting room table. It was in a nice leather case, clearly of recent construction. No idea whose it was, but it wasn't some dusty relic fished out of the bottom of a filing cabinet.
 
  • #14
Klystron
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As a an admonitory tale to parents who smoke I should relate my history.

As a child it seemed as if all adults smoked tobacco. Both parents, our closest relatives, friends and neighbors; even our live-in nanny, smoked cigarettes. I can still remember who smoked which brand. Children 'smoked' candy cigarettes and learned to roll pencil shavings into binder paper.

I resisted smoking myself until enlisting in the Air Force. Smoking was ubiquitous, tobacco nearly free. During boot camp the trainers gave smoke breaks but only to smokers. I required nearly 5 years after returning to university and civilian life to finally quit.

I tried low-tar, filtered and graduated filters like little cigarette holders. Yoga and exercise helped. Cigarette costs sky-rocketed leading to a dilemma: buy food or cigarettes. Oddly enough, once I quit for good I became allergic to tobacco smoke. I still cannot abide the odor.
 
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  • #15
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Smoke to stroke, that'll "learn ya."
 
  • #16
OmCheeto
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I don't get cravings when I don't have access to it.
Having smoked for over 40 years, I find this almost incomprehensible.
I'm guessing you are very young.
 
  • #17
HankDorsett
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I have successfully quit smoking twice with two different methods.

The first time, 20 year plus smoker, I used antidepressants and a negative support team. I had people telling me I couldn't do it but because of my type of personality I had to prove them wrong.

The second time I use vaping to quit. I moved to vaping from cigarettes. I found a place that made vaping liquid on site and every two weeks I would have them reduce the amount of nicotine until I got to zero.
 
  • #18
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  • #20
pinball1970
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Can anyone share their experience? I don't get cravings when I don't have access to it. But when I have access, I don't seem to be able to stop. i recently quit for 2 days, started again and I finally quit today for good
I think @phinds has it. Do you want to quit or not? If you do then you will. First week the worst, I had to stay out of the pub as alcohol was my trigger.
 
  • #21
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How old? 48
Not how old, how many? If you've quit twice, there are, at minimum, two of you.
 
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  • #22
epenguin
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I hope you've managed to stop for nearly a week now.

As the saying goes, it's easy to give up smoking – I've done it lots of times.

Actually I think I did it three times before the definitive one. I played tricks on myself. One time, it was not yet obligatory but I could see the movement at work was in that direction, it was increasingly frowned on (in the same institution where I can remember earlier years a meeting was your traditional 'Smoke-filled room' - not literally because the ventilation was good, however people including the high-ups smoked smoked freely, some even famous for it) I decided, maybe following moving into a new office, I will not smoke in this office. And somehow that was not difficult to hold to as long as I was in the office. And smoked in the lunch hour out of doors. And sometimes during working hours I would sneak out for a smoke outside. People did not fail to notice. In many places you still see this, outside shops or offices one or a group of diehard smokers smoking because it is not allowed inside.Didn't affect my smoking at home.

Another technique I used we as using was using nicotine tablets to compensate for the withdrawal,and some programme of phasing out. Was pretty unpleasant really, but I stopped – for some months. Relation of mine went on a course of some kind of group therapy, this was totally successful and he has given up for years without relapse, mind you reinforced by the fact of having a constant cardiac health risk that makes itself felt sometimes.So if there is a technique like that that works for you by all means use it.But I feel also that the techniques can distract from the essential, are you can blame the techniques if it doesn't work, the technique has failed, not you. Thus I finally decided essentially it is like phinds says,
Never mind techniques the, real point is YOU JUST GOTTA STOP! AND STAY STOPPED! So, reinforced by some health things, e.g. I was not going to be able I would be useless to have a dental transplant without stopping, then there were other pathologies I didn't even know about, I just stopped. As everybody says, the first week or 10 days is the hardest, that is first base, and you are not longer thinking about it all the time. First month another stage. But you have to continue that you have to know that even long term YOU ARE ALWAYS AT RISK of a relapse. The thought has not a few times come to me 'a cigar would be nice and just one wouldn't do any harm'.

. But I know it wouldn't stop there.I've dealt with this, among other ways, by imagining it. Then I realise I wouldn't enjoy the first one much,Most people don't enjoy their first cigarette, smoking is a learnt thing. I would have to smoke three or 4 to start enjoying it again, and then I would be hooked.
 
  • #23
epenguin
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Can anyone share their experience? I don't get cravings when I don't have access to it. But when I have access, I don't seem to be able to stop. i recently quit for 2 days, started again and I finally quit today for good

So my last post is relative, one experience^^^ has the same worth as someone else's.

But there is something else that could be VERY IMPORTANT FOR YOU TO KNOW, Prashad.

You say that you do not get cravings, and as a result you are probably overall only a moderate or light smoker. People like you, there are many, imagine that they have only a moderate risk from smoking. Apart from the fact that light smoking is very much increased risk compared to non-smoking, you could actually be high risk. The reason is this: after a person has smoked enzymes work to remove the nicotine from the bloodstream. So it's like they've had a drug withdrawal, and then they 'need', crave, another shot.But in some people these nicotine-removing systems are less active, and the drug is removed only slowly, they are let down gently and don't feel a craving. But that means that the nicotine is still around in their bodies for a longer time and harming them! So a non-craving and light smoker will be at less risk of cancer than a heavy smoker, but could be at high risk of circulatory diseases.

I read of the research that gave these conclusions in The Economist, a respectable journal with a serious science section, and will post a link if I still find it
 
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  • #24
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Can anyone share their experience?


Quitting is really not a joking matter, however, I think Jerry shares the experience about

as good as anybody. . .

Another Puff - YouTube



I've known people that seem to have easily quit, people that have tried and

made it, and people that have tried and not made it. . . ever. . 😣



Quitting is definitely a topic of discussion. . .

1567296452220.png


.
.
 
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