Cold turkey, gradual reduction, medications, counseling, and nicotine replacement products—these are the top mainstream methods of quitting smoking. But when you’ve tried everything a few times each, it may be time to try a new approach. Talk to a doctor at a walk-in clinic first, to ensure that any unconventional smoking cessation method you try will be safe for you, given your underlying health issues.
For schoolchildren, peer pressure can lead to some risky behaviors. It may even have been the reason why you first picked up a cigarette. Now that you’re ready to quit, use peer pressure in a positive way. Get together with someone close to you who also wants to quit smoking, like a family member, friend, or co-worker. Together, pick a mutual quit date. Spend the day together in a setting with zero access to tobacco. If you two make it past the first day, keep in close contact with each other. Give each other daily updates about your progress—and be honest! Your quit buddy is there to support you if you falter, and vice versa.
The threat of financial loss and the temptation of financial gain can both be powerful motivators. Some employers have encouraged their workers to quit smoking by offering financial incentives. It’s well worth the price, considering the extent to which tobacco use drives up healthcare premiums. Other people have bribed or threatened themselves. For example, if you and a friend both want to quit, agree that whoever fails to quit within a set period of time must pay the other person a set amount of money.
Another mental trick to try is to make cigarettes as unappealing as possible. On your quit date, throw out all of your cigarettes except for one. Put that cigarette in a dirty, germy place, like on top of the range hood in your kitchen. When you crave a smoke, allow yourself to take just one puff of that cigarette before putting it back on the range hood. Before long, the cigarette will acquire so much grime you won’t want to smoke it.
As part of our corporate medicine services, the providers at Paramount Urgent Care are pleased to offer smoking cessation assistance. Our walk-in clinics are located in Orlando, Clermont, Oviedo, and Casselberry. For more information, please visit www.paramounturgentcare.com.