Everyone has his or her own reasons for quitting, like the effects on your health and the impacts on your family. Knowing your reasons for quitting can help you stay motivated.
Common reasons for quitting include:
- Money savings! Check out the cost below
- More confident and in control of own life
- Positive role model for friends and family
- Whiter teeth and fresher breath
- Healthier glowing skin and fewer wrinkles
- Hair, breath and clothes won’t smell of smoke
- Improved sense of taste and smell
- Improved breathing and general fitness level
- Heal faster and have fewer complications after surgery
How Does Acupuncture Help Break the Cigarette Habit?
Acupuncture is successful with smoking cessation and has turned a growing number of cigarette smokers into permanent ex-smokers. Treatments take all of your symptoms into account and aim at balancing the energy within the body to optimize health.
The acupuncture treatments focus on jitters, cravings, irritability and restlessness; all symptoms that people commonly complain about when they quit. It also aids in relaxation and detoxification.
A Norwegian study showed acupuncture was found to significantly reduce the desire to smoke up to five years after the initial treatment. Subjects of the study also reported that cigarettes tasted worse than before treatment and that the treatments had effectively reduced their taste for tobacco.
The acupuncture needles used are hair-thin. They are superficially inserted into various points in the ears and or body to assist with smoking cessation. In between treatments, small pellets are often taped to the acupuncture points on the ear. When a cigarette craving hits, gently pressing on the pellets stimulates the acupuncture points to calm the mind and eliminate the craving.
Acupuncture is not a panacea or a magic cure in the treatment of any addiction, including smoking. But, acupuncture is effective in making it easier to quit and remain smoke-free for good.
What Points Are Used?
Each patient is custom-treated according to his or her specific and unique diagnosis. Usually a combination of body acupuncture points and points on the ear are used that are believed to influence the organs and energetic pathways associated with smoking.
Typical treatments last from five to 30 minutes, with the patient being treated one or two times a week. After removing the needles, ear press needles or silver pellets are often applied to stimulate the points between treatments and reduce cravings.
Herbs To Help Me Quit Smoking?
Often you are prescribed herbs or supplements to control cravings or withdrawal symptoms.
There are three areas to address for herbal support; dryness and tissue repair, irritability and cravings.
- A Lung Yin Tonic such as Ophiopogonis Combination (Mai Men Dong Tang) is often used to moisten the lungs and mouth which can prevent cravings and repair tissue damage caused by smoking.
- A Chinese herbal formula to calm the spirit may be used for irritability. Bupleurum plus Dragon Bone and Oyster Shell (Chai Hu Jia Long Gu Mu Li Tang) can help relieve irritability and anxiety associated with detox. Many people use this formula to help them through stressful situations and prevent relapses.
- Lobelia Tea (Ban Bian Lian) or Green Tea can be sipped daily during the detox period to keep tissues flooded with elements that discourage nicotine cravings. (Lobelia is traditionally used to rid the body of a strong toxin such as a snake bite.)
Eight Tips to Quit Smoking
What Lifestyle and Dietary Changes Should You Make?
- Exercise more. Getting moving is a great way to remind yourself why you shouldn’t smoke. Exercise can reduce your stress and help you relax far better than cigarettes.
- Get plenty of fresh fruit and vegetable juices to neutralize and clear the blood of nicotinic acid and to fortify blood sugar.
- Carrots, Carrot juice, celery, leafy green salads and citrus fruits promote body alkalinity and decrease cravings.
- Avoid junk food, sugar and coffee. They can upset blood sugar levels and increase blood acidity which can aggravate smoking withdrawal symptoms.
- Lobelia Tea or Green Tea can be sipped daily during the detox period to keep tissues flooded with elements that discourage nicotine cravings. Lobelia is traditionally used to rid the body of a strong toxin such as a snake bite.
- Drink water. Research shows that dryness causes cravings. Sip water frequently throughout the day.
- Practice deep breathing exercises to increase body oxygen and keep calm.
- Schedule your acupuncture treatment!
How Many Treatments Will I Need and How Long Do they Take?
The length, number and frequency of treatments will vary. Typical treatments last from five to 30 minutes, with the patient being treated one or two times a week. Some symptoms are relieved after the first treatment, while more severe or chronic ailments often require multiple treatments.
A stop smoking program will often consist of 4-6 initial treatments scheduled in the first few weeks followed by monthly treatments for four to six months.
Other Methods for Quitting:
Nicotine Gum : A non-prescription (over-the-counter) nicotine replacement therapy product and only contains nicotine and none of the other toxins that are in tobacco smoke. Each piece of gum has nicotine in it, which is released when used as directed, allowing you to receive nicotine when you have a craving for a cigarette.
Advantages: Nicotine gum good for occasional smokers to reduce withdrawal symptoms, cravings and manage stress, gum to help you reduce the number of cigarettes you smoke daily.
Common side effects: Nicotine gum is not like regular gum. If used incorrectly, you are more likely to experience side effects, including, nausea, stomach upset, mouth-throat or gum irritation, jaw ache, hiccups, headaches and or trouble sleeping.
Nicotine Patch: Quit medication that you can get from without a prescription. The patch only contains nicotine which means it has none of the other toxins that are in tobacco. The patch sticks to your skin like a bandage, providing a slow and steady release of nicotine into your system to help reduce withdrawal and cravings.
Advantages: Easy to use – just put it on once per day and forget about it. Useful for heavier smokers who need steady release of nicotine. Designed to temporarily replace some of the nicotine that cigarettes would normally supply and thus reduce the symptoms of nicotine withdrawal such as cravings, irritability and anxiety. You can choose the strength of the dosage. This is dependent on the number of cigarettes you smoke per day. See below for suggested dosages or talk to your doctor or pharmacist.
Common side effects: Headaches, cold or flu-like symptoms, dizziness, anxiety, sleep problems, vivid dreams, stomach upset, mild itching, burning and tingling are normal in the first hour of wearing the patch.
Champix / Varenicline: Only available by prescription from your doctor. It blocks the effects of nicotine and reduces cravings and withdrawal symptoms. If you start smoking again while taking the medicine, you won’t feel as satisfied. This improves your chances of quitting.
Advantages: Champix works by changing the way the brain reacts to nicotine. It makes it harder to get pleasure from nicotine and also helps to reduce cravings by blocking the receptor in the brain that responds to nicotine. Other advantages include: It doubles or triples your chances of quitting successfully. It’s easy to use. It does not contain nicotine, which is important to some people.
Common side effects: Nausea and vomiting, Gas and constipation, Insomnia and abnormal dreams, Headache, and Mood & behavioural change