All About Smoking Cessation Aids

Smokers know how hard it is to stop smoking. The habit is plain addictive. There will always be that craving and urge once a smoker distances himself from smoking. Quitting cold turkey, or instantly dropping the habit, calls for more discipline and focus on the mission. Therefore, smokers who really want to quit look for some things to help them cope through urge and withdrawal symptoms that they will experience while on the process of quitting smoking.

There are indeed products and services specifically designed to aid a smoker quit. These products and services are marketed as to lessen the discomfort and frustration felt by a withdrawing smoker. An important thing to note here is that the smoker needs to consult a proper medical professional especially when taking in some of these.

- Nicotine Replacement Therapy
o This includes nicotine gum and patches. What it does is that it introduces to the body a controlled amount of nicotine so as to reduce the withdrawal symptoms that are sure to kick in once someone quits smoking. Some might wonder why this is better than just reducing cigarette consumption for days but one thing to note that smoking tobacco also introduces other types of chemicals such as tar and carbon monoxide. These toxic chemicals are obviously absent in NRTs. Nicotine is the only addictive component of tobacco so it is the only chemical needed to be slowly lowered in consumption. The disadvantage of NRTs is re-addiction since nicotine is still present in the body while the treatment is going on.

- Prescription Smoking Cessation Aids
o There are two most common prescription cessation aids, Bupropion (Zyban) and Varenicline (Chantix). Bupropion is a prescription pill originally designed as an anti-depressant. It was however observed by patients and proven in tests that it can help patients to stop smoking. It reduces cravings for nicotine and withdrawal symptoms associated with smoking cessation. It is not, however, without side effects. These includes susceptibility to seizures. Verenicline is also a prescription medication and it really is designed as a smoking cessation aid. It powers the so-called nicotinic receptors found in the brain. This results to reduction in cravings and actually makes smoking less attractive to smokers.

Like Bupropion, Verenicline has some side effects like nausea. While these drugs may seem very high-end, with proper guidance from a medical professional and strict adherence to dosage, these medications have proven to be one of the most effective help to quit smoking.

- Alternative Methods
o Hypnosis is one of the widely promoted smoking cessation aid. Smoking hypnotherapy involves putting the mind in an altered state where it is susceptible to suggestion. This suggestion could be to stop smoking. Self-hypnosis, a form of hypnosis where a person hypnotizes himself, is a very accessible method. It however involves careful study and execution.

o Acupuncture is another alternative way. It is an ancient Chinese technique where needles are inserted in pressure points in the body to control the flow of “chi” or energy. With regards to smoking, it promises to heal nicotine addiction through detoxification.

There are still several methods out there, all that is needed to do is to ask for assistance from reliable sources about what smoking cessation aid could work best for you. The best thing to remember though is that it is the self, through sheer will and determination, which can really guide the way to quitting smoking.