MORE THAN A HABIT

Why It's Hard To Quit Tobacco

Even though you want to quit, there are two reasons that can make feel it hard:

1.Because tobacco use is highly addictive and therefore not just a habit, you have a physical need for nicotine. You experience nicotine withdrawal when you go too long without a cigarette or an e-cigarette, chewing tobacco, snuff or vape. Your body “tells” you this when you get a craving. The craving goes away once you satisfy the addiction by lighting up or using another form of tobacco. Get ready to deal with this by adding free patches, gum and lozenges or other quit medications to your plan.

2.You may be addicted to the act of using tobacco. As your body was developing a physical need for nicotine, you were teaching yourself to smoke, chew or vape, and training yourself to use tobacco in many different situations. These situational cues can be overcome if you prepare for them beforehand.

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Knowing how you would like to deal with triggers like those listed below before you face them as a non-smoker will help you feel confident.

Finishing a meal
Drinking coffee or alcohol
Talking on the telephone
Taking a break
During times of stress, an argument, disappointment or negative event
Driving or riding in the car
Being around friends, co-workers and other people who smoke or use other tobacco products
Socializing at parties

What about E-Cigarettes?

E-cigarettes are not approved by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) as an aid to quit smoking. E-cigarettes and other electronic nicotine delivery systems (ENDS), including personal vaporizers, vape pens, e-cigars, e-hookah and vaping devices, may expose users to some of the same toxic chemicals found in combustible cigarette smoke.

What triggers your urge to use tobacco?

Write your triggers down and think about the best way to handle each of them. Strategies can be simple, such as avoiding certain situations, having gum or hard candy with you, substituting a hot tea or chewing on ice, or taking several deep breaths.

Delaying is another tactic. As you’re preparing to quit, think about when you usually have your first smoke, chew or vape of the day and try to delay that for as long as you can. Even delaying by a short amount of time, and lengthening that every day up to your quit date, can reduce cravings. For tips and ideas on how to deal with these triggers, check out Staying Quit.

Make Your Quit Plan

It only takes a minute to make your own quit plan.