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Sunday, March 1, 2015
Smoking and Tobacco
Can you tell me how my mom can stop smoking?
There are a number of ways people can use to quit smoking cigarettes. It is very important that persons themselves are interested in stopping smoking. Letting your mother know that you care for her and want to be helpful as she quits smoking is a good start.
One approach is for the smoker to identify times and places where they usually smoke and develop plans for things to do instead of smoking cigarettes in those situations. For example, when talking on the phone, hold cucumber or carrot sticks instead of a cigarette. Or when driving in a car and feeling stressed, do slow, deep breathing exercises instead of smoking. Just delaying a cigarette for 5 minutes at a time is a strategy to get past the urge to smoke.
A number of agencies listed on this website with links have print materials describing these and other techniques to help in the quitting process. In addition, some people find that nicotine replacement in the form of patches or gum (available without prescription) or nicotine inhaler or nicotine nasal spray (available with a prescription) help to reduce their withdrawal symptoms. Zyban and Chantix have been reported to help some smokers in the quitting process. However, with any medication it is important for the person to have plans to handle situations that are reminders of smoking.
Tell your mother how proud you are of her success - quitting cigarettes for one day; quitting cigarettes for one week - since this is a difficult process that takes time to learn.
Karen L Ahijevych, PhD, RN, FAAN
College of Public Health
College of Nursing
The Ohio State University