Ways to curb your cravings for nicotine

Posted by Merry, Volunteer Mentor @merpreb, Jun 19, 2019

<p>I smoked for 35 years and wore a patch for a week before I had my first lobectomy. I did not put it back on after I got home from the hospital. There is no getting a way around the difficulty that most people have with quitting smoking, especially women. (https://www.livescience.com/19452-women-harder-quit-smoking.html). Most of us will get cravings that will push our tolerance in deprivation. After my operation I came very very close to picking up a butt that I thought that I had left in the ashtray in my car. I thank the Sun that my husband had cleaned it out. I never tried again. I went from one craving to another, instead of one minute to another or one step at a time. I went from one thought to another too, I got busy, joined ballet and exercise groups, walked and walked and walked. I did not substitute anything in my mouth because I read that you have to break the habit of putting something in your mouth.<br />My mind wouldn't shut off thinking about cigarettes, not that I would smoke, but in general . When I was busy I didn't think about it or crave smoking.<br />I actually fumbled around trying to stay busy and then it became easier and my thoughts of smoking were less frequent until the weren't anymore. I remember my realization when I knew that I had it beat. I was so thrilled! I had a mantra that I stole from my husband. He told me that if I smoke I would die. I said it every time I felt the urge, over and over and over again. It saved my life.<br />Why did you quit> How did you quit? What helped you?</p>

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It is not going well. I quit trying to quit. I know I have to start over again. wish I could have a prescription for some kind of tranquilizer pill that iI could take when I feel like I am going to jump out of my skin. I get so emotional and angry and that is when i give in and start smoking again. I never last more than one day or so.

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Hi – some of you have talked about trying to curb nicotine cravings in this Connect discussion. I wanted to invite a few others to join this discussion and offer their thoughts and tips on dealing with cravings,such as @parus @waterboy @shortshot80 @danab @sammymm2 @bill54321 @unbreakable @joangma @veteranspouseinpain @joelars.

I also wanted to reach out and see how things are going for you.

@susangourdlady – how are your efforts to quit going lately?

@trellg132 – how are things going for you with nicotine cravings?

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As I've said before it always helps to have the inspiration to quit smoking. Mine was wanting to live after I was diagnosed with cancer. Even without being diagnosed with cancer cigarettes can make you more suspectable to contratcing the virus because of what it does to your lungs.

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Hi everyone and i know how tough it is to quit. For me i was finally convinced to quit when one day Oct 2011 after 30 years of smoking. i was hospitalized from a arrythmya attack and my pacemaker had to shock me back from certain death. But me being optimistic that it couldn't be from smoking. So here i am in the hospital and begging the drs and nurses to let me go outside and have a cigarette. Against Medical advice they let me. Well i did it and took a few puffs then tried to go back to my room and was having problems breathing. The clincher for me was when i got into bed and put the finger probe back on and my o2 level was like 81. It was that moment by the Grace of God he convinced me i was being stupid. That was the last cigarette i ever had. And im glad i did because 6 years later i would probably not been approved to receive the heart i have now. So after leaving the hospital after quitting whenever i got the urge i would eat pistachios. They say if you can take your mind off of the urge for 5 minutes the urge goes away. So the act of deshelling the nut and eating it worked for me. Plus i believe a lot of help from God. And the reward was worth it all. No more fretting about long plane rides, i get to see the whole movie in a theater. And the biggest plus is my kids were so happy that i didn't smell anymore or that there friends didn't complain about smelling like smoke at school. I don't remember how long it took before i did not have the urge anymore but after about 6 months it turned into a challenge that if i start back up now i lost all that time. Good luck and you will love the new you.

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A very dear friend of many years is a smoker and is working at quitting. However, she says that with COVID-19, the progress she'd made by reducing the # smoked ea. day or week. Now she is smoking more than before she began trying to stop. She tried Chantix in the past; she's used gum, patches but now is terrified … not only by the added stress but also because she is afraid to shop for more. Any tips I can share that might help? I like the "mantra", Merry, and will share it with her. I've mentioned that meditation is calming for me and I know focused breathing helps because I have compromised lungs from chronic bronchitis. Thank you.

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@fiesty76

A very dear friend of many years is a smoker and is working at quitting. However, she says that with COVID-19, the progress she'd made by reducing the # smoked ea. day or week. Now she is smoking more than before she began trying to stop. She tried Chantix in the past; she's used gum, patches but now is terrified … not only by the added stress but also because she is afraid to shop for more. Any tips I can share that might help? I like the "mantra", Merry, and will share it with her. I've mentioned that meditation is calming for me and I know focused breathing helps because I have compromised lungs from chronic bronchitis. Thank you.

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@fiesty76– Good afternoon. I smoked for 35 years. When I was told that I had cancer the first thing that happened was an urge to smoke. I couldn't get out of the hospital fast enough to light up. My husband didn't understand and was shocked that I didn't immediately quit. Somehow smokers think that any outside stress will be relieved by smoking and it's physically the opposite. Although true physical cravings last up to a month psychological cravings last much, much longer. I think that as smoking turns into an addiction and a habit, it's the habit that needs to be broken. A habit is horrible to break, especially if you have smoked a long time.
Your friend has lost her inspiration. She thinks that she needs to smoke to help calm her. What she needs is a new inspiration to quit, not pressure. She already feels shame and guilt. Perhaps the following links will help.
https://www.healthline.com/health/heart-disease/stress-smoking#2
https://www.medicalnewstoday.com/articles/323012

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Merry, Thank you for this info. I appreciate the links and will read them with interest to share with her. She even said, one day: "Instead of calming me, I am much more irritable now; sleeping less and just can't settle down." Thanks again.

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@fiesty76

Merry, Thank you for this info. I appreciate the links and will read them with interest to share with her. She even said, one day: "Instead of calming me, I am much more irritable now; sleeping less and just can't settle down." Thanks again.

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@fiesty76– Why didn't the Chantix work? Did she say?

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Merry, she said the Chantix Did help with her cravings but her blood pressure shot up sky high…like 200? and her doc said to stop the chantix. Friend had not seen any reports about its affect like that on blood pressure so thinks hers might have been due to the increased tension the smoking cessagion was causing…no medical reasons were given.

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@fiesty76

Merry, she said the Chantix Did help with her cravings but her blood pressure shot up sky high…like 200? and her doc said to stop the chantix. Friend had not seen any reports about its affect like that on blood pressure so thinks hers might have been due to the increased tension the smoking cessagion was causing…no medical reasons were given.

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@fiesty76– Wow, that's high.

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