Will this New Year’s Day be the umpteenth time you are trying to quit that old smoking habit? Well, it is the best time to start the quitting process according to experts. And here’s how you can make it stick…
Weekly reinforcement is key
Yes, the first step would be to decide to quit on New Year’s Day, but weekly reinforcement is necessary to make it work, says experts.
According to a study published in 2013 in the JAMA Internal Medicine, researchers from various institutions united to monitor the global Google search query logs for searches related to quitting smoking. Keywords such as ‘help quit smoking’ was observed in searches from 2008 to 2012, in English, French, Chinese, Portuguese, Russian and Spanish, to determine if there were weekly patterns in people’s contemplations to quit smoking.
The study revealed that this was searched more often earlier in the week – with the highest prevalence on Mondays.
It takes more than once to succeed
According to studies it takes more than once to quit smoking before it sticks – seven to 10 times to be exact, making it crucial to re-quit weekly, until you succeed. Encouraging smokers to recommit to quitting weekly can cut the amount of quitting attempts considerably.
“… campaigns for people to quit may benefit from shifting to weekly cues to increase the number of quit attempts participants make each year,” says Joanna Cohen, co-author of the Google study and director of the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health Institute for Global Tobacco Control. So Mondays will be the best time to start over if you’ve succumbed to the temptation of smoking the previous week – Mondays can be seen as a clean slate. Mondays are also great for social support, which is key in long-term success.
Achieving anti-smoking-success in the New Year
Mobile applications: These days there are smartphone applications for almost everything under the sun, and quitting smoking is not an exception. Some applications will help you with key factors in quitting, such as constant reinforcements, goal setting, etc. They are, amongst others:
1. LIVESTRONG MyQuit Coach
2. Kick the Habit: Quit Smoking
3. Quit Pro: your smoking cessation
4. My last cigarette
5. The Painless Stop Smoking Cure
7. Stop Smoking Cigarettes Now
8. Stop Smoking!
9. Stop Smoking Self Hypnosis
10. Smoke Free – Stop Smoking
Nicotine gums: The nicotine gum market is growing at a rapid pace of 43%, with major brands jumping on the band wagon to help people counter their nicotine cravings.
Nicotine lozenges: If nicotine gum is not for you, then lozenges might just do the trick. Lozenges can last up to 15 minutes, whereas gum might deteriorate too quickly.
E-cigarettes: E-cigarettesare much less harmful than cigarettes, because they do not contain tar and other carcinogens present in normal cigarettes. What’s more is it imitates the addictive movements and processes of smoking.
Source: India.com, WHO, about.com, World Lung Foundation, American Cancer Society.