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Can you stop smoking?

(40 Posts)
sandymoon101 Fri 06-Mar-15 00:28:57

Hello, quick question. Can anyone stop smoking on their own? with out any medication? - not talking about passive smokers - If they have been doing it for a long time?

Allergictoironing Fri 06-Mar-15 07:17:53

Yes some people can, but not all. You have people on these forums who have given up cold turkey, and the Allen Carr book has an excellent success rate - from what I can gather, at least as good if not better than approved medications.

It also depends on what you mean by "medication". There are the pills your doctor or stop smoking clinic may give you e.g. Champix, which work directly on the brain. There's also various types of NRT (Nicotine replacement therapy) which help you get over the habit aspect of smoking & then wean yourself off the nicotine over time.

Many of us here swear by vaping, where you use an e-cig of some form to mimic the habit element and still get the nicotine hit with none of the harmful by-products of cigarettes.

EhricLovesTheBhrothers Fri 06-Mar-15 07:19:55

Yes if course. Some people can just stop with no help, lots of pregnant women do it. The Allen Carr method is fantastically successful for people wanting to stop without nicotine substitutes.

ProudForMe Sun 29-Mar-15 17:54:01

Hi I just stopped cold turkey four days ago.It is bloody hard and I feel quite rubbish on and off. I have actually cried at some points! I think I want to just go for it and get it over with, I do not want to spend any more money buying things that contain nicotine which is what this addiction is to.Today I nearly cracked, I nearly had a cigarette. It is crazy how powerful the urge is when it really comes on,I really had to fight it,I felt like I was being told I couldn't do it but then I dont want to go through this withdrawal torture again.I have questioned will having just one be ok but if I have one ill want two and its the addiction talking.Worse thing I ever did was starting cos this is hellish

crispandfruity Sun 29-Mar-15 18:22:27

Proud, well done you. At 4 days you are really breaking the back of it. It's interesting how your addicted brain tries to trick you. Like you I know that only 1 will be 20 a day within a week. And yet a little voice often pops up saying 'just have 1... treat yourself'

I'm not as hardcore as you, I'm vaping. I see the vapes as my insurance. When that voice starts I've got a weapon to fight it with.

WestEast Sun 29-Mar-15 18:25:37

I stopped cold turkey 20 days ago. We're about to start TTC and I was in the right place to stop. I had about 15 cigs left and gave them to a random bloke I saw smoking.

crispandfruity Sun 29-Mar-15 18:26:43

How I wish I'd been that random bloke West!!!

Congrats on 20 days btw.

ProudForMe Sun 29-Mar-15 18:43:40

Thanks crispandfruity.I have had two massive urges today, does anyone know when this gets easier?I am dreading being in work because I know that I will really want to smoke on my breaks.

gaggiagirl Sun 29-Mar-15 18:51:30

I did it cold turkey. It does get easier but the first month I would say is the hardest. It always the trigger situations that remind you you want a faaaaaaaag. It does get easier though.
I kept one item of clothing that I smoked in and washed the rest. My smokers vest reeks so that was a good trick to put me off.

grannycake Sun 29-Mar-15 19:08:38

I gave up smoking 2 years ago this week. I had smoked for over 40 years and smoked about 30 a day. I do use an e cig but am much better off financially and it's lovely not to feel dependant anymore

ProudForMe Sun 29-Mar-15 20:28:54

Gaggiagirl did you ever give in and just have one?that's what my mind argues with me,just one last one.

ReallyBadParty Sun 29-Mar-15 20:30:18

Yep, dh and I did, about twelve years ago.

Still dream about smoking though grin

Wadingthroughsoup Sun 29-Mar-15 20:58:32

Wow, good for you Proud, and all the other cold turkey quitters. I tried it many times (along with various other strategies, NRT, medication, hypnotherapy...) and it was just too tough for me. I'm using an ecig now. In an ideal world, I'd have been able to quite cold turkey but I tried it so many times, and failed, that I realised I was just sabotaging myself, so ecigs it is.

But cold turkey works for some and I take my hat off to those of you who've managed it. Proud, from my past experiences, those tantalising thoughts of 'one last one...for a treat', is your addiction trying to win you over. In reality, if you had that 'one last one', how many days or weeks would it be until you were able to convince yourself you deserved another 'one last one'?

I think, for cold turkey, your mantra has to be NOPE (Not One Puff, Ever).

ProudForMe Sun 29-Mar-15 21:21:35

Thanks wadingthroughsoup.So that's the addiction trying to trick me isn't it?Feel tired out at the moment too,think that's part and parcel isn't it and when I haven't got cravings I am much more mellow.I have used an ecig before but I found I didn't enjoy it as much a real life cigarette,I think if I used one id be smoking again.

gaggiagirl Sun 29-Mar-15 21:28:39

proud no because it wouldn't be just one would it? You know that too. I did take up eating as a replacement though. That hasn't gone away but its a nice substitute.

Fadingmemory Sun 29-Mar-15 21:29:58

I sat reading Allen Carr and smoking. Then I pulled myself together and gave up, cold turkey. One day 20 ciggies, the next none and none since. If it helps, in the 6 years since I gave up I have saved 15,000 pounds!

ProudForMe Sun 29-Mar-15 21:30:51

Yeah gaggiagirl,youre right.Just going to tell my brain a big resounding NO.I am wary of eating more.I haven't found my thing yet.I just sit down and go insane in my head until it passes.

Wadingthroughsoup Sun 29-Mar-15 21:49:14

You're doing so brilliantly Proud. I'm sure the tiredness is part of it, definitely. Nicotine is a stimulant so going without it is bound to affect how 'awake' you feel.

There are a couple of different schools of thought on dealing with cravings (and bearing in mind I did not succeed at cold turkey, so feel free to ignore what I have to say on the subject!)

Many books/experts will advise distracting yourself from your cravings by keeping busy and finding something else to do every time you have a craving (drinking icy cold water/going for a walk/picking up a cross-stitch...) However, other experts argue that distraction is a form of denial, and that the quitter should 'confront' their craving by sitting with it- as uncomfortable and unpleasant as that will inevitably be- in order to learn how to deal with them. The idea is that each and every time you are able to do it, you are learning that- although they are deeply unpleasant- cravings won't hurt or kill you.

I don't know which is the 'correct' strategy but I just thought that was quite interesting.

ProudForMe Sun 29-Mar-15 22:07:05

That is interesting wading!Of course I wont ignore you,I am happy for any input,its all new for me too.
See I dont know if a distraction would work for me as yet because I cannot just get up and go for a walk as I have a small child but I do think that'd help and I dont want to use food etc as a replacement in a way.I dont know if it sounds stupid but I just want to wave the whole thing goodbye without adding something into the mix. See people having suggested nicotine patches but then would that not need weaning off again?In a way I think its good that I sm feeling this struggle because I hope it will show me I dont want to do it again.

Wadingthroughsoup Sun 29-Mar-15 22:42:39

I'm sure you could be right there Proud- if you're able to remember how awful this bit is, you won't want to go through it ever again.

Re. nicotine patches, yes, people do have to gradually wean off them but I think the possible advantages of them are:
a) You can reduce the amount of nicotine in them gradually over quite a long period (12 weeks is advised, I think, with the amount of nicotine gradually reducing.)
b) Using a patch allows you to first deal with withdrawal from the 'habit' of smoking and then deal with the nicotine addiction at a later stage. So doing it in two stages, rather than all at once.

But you're doing great, so if you're feeling strong just stick with it! I'm full of admiration for you.

gaggiagirl Sun 29-Mar-15 22:43:46

proud the speakmans recommend doing 30 squats instead of having a fag. Give it a go nothing at this stage will hurt.
When I quit I really wanted someone just to tell me that its ok to smoke. A lovely kind smoking fairy who says please gaggia just smoke its great for you. It never happened. I think I wanted permission to light up again.

ProudForMe Mon 30-Mar-15 08:43:25

When I had a really bad craving my friend said " just have one then" I was SO annoyed.just gave on then?Cheers for your support pal. Not so much this delightful smoking fairy you describe rather a troll.
That's a new idea squats!Id usually have gone for a cigarette now but I'm not bothered at the moment.

gaggiagirl Mon 30-Mar-15 21:35:07

I've just had a bit of ham because I forgot I dont smoke anymore and for a second turned to go outside for a smoke.
Why did we ever start?

ProudForMe Mon 30-Mar-15 23:36:58

I think this now.I enjoyed smoking but then I just got sick of my life revolving around it and was hiding it from my child and family.So I thought to myself if I'm so ashamed of it then why do I do it? People said in the past to me never start smoking but as a teen you just think yeahhhh whatever you say.Now I think god you were actually trying to help me. I haven't had any cravings this evening.I do feel strange though.Kind of unoccupied?

ProudForMe Mon 30-Mar-15 23:42:17

And restless,cant sleep properly but ill be shattered in the morning.

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