Quitting is tobacco isn’t easy, but you are not alone. The Great American Smokeout, an initiative from the American Cancer Society, is a way to quit alongside millions of people across the country. It is celebrated annually on the third Thursday of November. Whether you choose to quit on this day, or plan to start your journey toward a tobacco-free life on another day, these tips can help prepare you.
Talk to your doctor about getting help to quit and choose a quit method such as cold turkey, tapering, nicotine replacement therapies, or doctor-prescribed medication.
Develop a plan that defines your goals, prepares you to quit and will hold you accountable to your commitment to be tobacco-free.
Remember your reasons for quitting. Are you quitting because you want to live a long, healthy life? Whatever your reason, keep it top of mind all the time!
Share your decision to quit with people who will support your efforts. This could be your significant other, best friend, coworkers, sibling, etc.
Know your triggers. Recognize people, places and things that you associate with tobacco/nicotine—and avoid them until you feel confident that you can be around them without temptation. Consider these examples:
• People: If you have a smoking buddy at work, politely explain you’re quitting and that you won’t be joining them outside for your routine break.
• Places: If your vape spot is a particular chair on your deck or porch, avoid sitting in it or move it elsewhere to weaken its association with nicotine.
• Things: If you enjoy a chew or dip after your morning coffee, try swapping your coffee with tea or a brisk walk for a morning jolt of energy.
Tobacco use is a leading cause of preventable disease, disability, and death in the United States, accounting for more than 480,000 deaths every year, or about 1 in 5 deaths. Quitting tobacco is one of the best steps you can take toward a healthy lifestyle.