Helping Someone Quit
Get tips, read quit-smoking stories, and encourage a loved-one to quit. Smokers are 50% more likely to quit and stay tobacco free if they have the help and support of family and friends. Check out our Quitting Resources Directory and our Youth Directory.
Most smokers say that support makes it easier to quit smoking. In fact your encouragement coupled with proven cessation methods can double a smoker's chances of successfully quitting. It may sound intimidating, but helping someone quit smoking is easy! Following some practical tips can make you the best quit-smoking-aid around.
Help Through Encouragement
- First, simply ask your friend or family member if you can offer support as he or she learns to quit. Two people are stronger than one.
- Don't threaten, nag or lecture about the effects of smoking. Focus on the benefits of quitting smoking - money, better health.
- If temptation strikes, remind them why they decided to stop smoking. Stress the benefits of quitting, rather than the dangers of continuing to smoke.
- Be prepared for bad moods. Nicotine withdrawal can make some people irritable. Try to indulge the occasional bad mood.
- Make sure that you are available in person or by telephone. Keep in touch, and avoid pestering.
Help Through Your Actions
- Send them a card on their quitting day to wish them good luck.
- If you smoke, be considerate. Don't offer the cigarettes, leave full ashtrays lying around, and try to smoke away from your friend.
- Visit your local pharmacist with them to discover available quitting medications.
- Join your quitter by giving up a habit of your own. It could help empathize with the feelings your friend may be experiencing.
Helping in Creative Ways
- Make a quitter's "survival kit." It could include a booklet about quitting, sugar-free gum, low calorie snacks, and maybe even a treat.
- Plan a shopping trip after a week or two so your quitter can buy something special with the money saved.
- Plan activities that avoid the temptation to smoke - swimming, the movies. The more they can get used to socializing without smoking, the easier it will become to separate smoking from old habits.
- TPCP Annual Report
- 2010 Utah Tobacco Facts
- Decreasing Smoking 1% Benefits
- Effects of Nicotine Products
Research indicates that if you're thinking about quitting, you may actually overemphasize what you "get" from using tobacco. One effective method for dealing with this is to focus on reasons you want to quit instead. Take a few minutes and write down 10 reasons why you want to quit. Keep this list in a place you can get to easily. Review these reasons daily, the more you emphasize the reasons you want to quit, the more likely you will not slip.
Find a small, pocket-size notebook. Each time you want a cigarette or chew, take out your notebook and write a few thoughts: what time is it, what's your mood, who are you with, where are you? Write in your journal each time you use tobacco, for up to 3 days. After you have 10 journal entries, review what you've written. See any patterns or trends?