Though it can seem impossible, there are some ways to deal with the nicotine cravings along your journey to becoming tobacco-free. The tips below are helpful when you’re feeling a craving. But it’s also important to recognize your “triggers” — those places or situations in which you feel you need to smoke. Recognizing these can help you prepare to fight back against them.
Tips to Curb Cravings
- Take deep, slow breaths.
- Brush your teeth or wash your hands. Psychologically this can break the pattern of the habit, distracting you from that feeling of “want.”
- Substitute a water bottle, gum, candy, or toothpicks for tobacco. Oral fixation is a big part of the mental aspect of the addiction.
- Use over-the-counter quitting aids like nicotine gum or the patches, or see your doctor about prescription nicotine-replacement medications. Nicotine is an addictive chemical. Your body may need help with withdrawal symptoms.
- Surround yourself with others who are committed to helping you quit. Support is the difference between failure and success.
- Avoid tempting situations or places.
- Fill your “cigarette hand” with other objects like a pencil or pen.
- Replace your chewing tobacco with sunflower seeds.
- Do some physical activity, like taking a brisk walk or doing some jumping jacks. A boost of adrenaline from exercise can help focus your mind.
- If feelings of stress or anxiety are one of your triggers, try talking to someone about these issues. Learning to handle these emotions in a healthy way has lots of benefits, including helping you to quit smoking.
last updated April 17, 2019