Deciding to quit using tobacco is one of the best New Year’s resolutions you can make for yourself. Eliminating or decreasing your tobacco use has significant benefits for your health, your family, and your finances. If you quit vaping, smoking, or chewing, you will experience physical, emotional, and social benefits. It can be hard to quit, but with the right strategies and support, you can do it.

The Benefits of Quitting Tobacco

Quitting is one of the most important steps you can take for your health. Smoking, vaping, and chewing can cause numerous health problems, including coronary heart disease, stroke, cancer, and chronic lung disease. But when you quit, you can reduce your risk of developing these health problems.

The physical benefits of quitting are clear. Your lungs will begin to clear out tar and other toxins that have built up over time. Your risk of developing heart disease, stroke, and other smoking-related illnesses will decrease. In addition, your breathing will improve, and you may even have more energy.

The emotional benefits of quitting are just as important. Quitting tobacco use will help you become more aware of your feelings, and you will be better able to cope with stress. Your mood will improve and you will become more optimistic. You will also gain self-confidence as you take pride in the fact that you have made a positive lifestyle change.

Finally, quitting has social benefits. You will have more time to spend with loved ones,  and won’t have to worry about the impacts of secondhand exposure for those around you. You will also be able to be more active and enjoy activities that you may have avoided due to smoking, vaping, or chewing.

Why is it Hard to Quit Using Tobacco?

It is important to understand why quitting can be so difficult. Using tobacco is an addiction, and like any addiction, it can be hard to break. Nicotine, the chemical in cigarettes and other forms of tobacco, is highly addictive. It causes physical and psychological dependence, so quitting can be a long and difficult process.

Smoking/Vaping/Chewing is also a habit, and habits can be hard to break. You may find yourself reaching for your tobacco without even thinking about it since you may associate certain situations, such as after meals or when drinking alcohol, with smoking, vaping, or chewing. Breaking these associations can be difficult, but it is possible.

Withdrawal symptoms may also make it difficult to quit using tobacco. Symptoms may include cravings, irritability, difficulty concentrating, and sleep disturbances. These symptoms can be uncomfortable and can make it hard to stay motivated to quit.

Tips to Quit Smoking

If you are planning to quit smoking, vaping, or chewing, there are a few tips that can help you succeed.

  1. Talk to your doctor. They can provide advice and support, as well as refer you to resources that can help you quit.
  • Set a quit date. Decide when you will quit and make a plan for how you will do it. This will help you stay motivated and focused.
  • Tell your friends and family. Let them know that you are quitting and ask for their support. This will help you stay on track, as you will be accountable to those who care about you.
  • Make a list of the reasons why you want to quit smoking. This will help you stay motivated and focused on your goal.
  • Keep yourself distracted. Replace smoking with other activities, such as exercising or reading. This will help you stay away from cigarettes.

Support Systems to Help You Quit Smoking

Quitting smoking, vaping, or chewing can be difficult, but you don’t have to do it alone. There are many support systems available that can help you quit smoking. Zumbro Valley Health Center has several tobacco treatment services to help support your resolution to quit smoking, vaping, or chewing. Contact us today to talk to someone about how we can help you reach your goals in 2023!

Happy New Year from your friends at Zumbro Valley Health Center!