Smoking triggers and how to beat them

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Many people have tried to quit smoking but couldn’t. There are many reasons for this, but one of them is because of triggers. A trigger is something that makes you want to smoke.


Emotional triggers

When you have certain emotions, you may get the urge to smoke. They may include feeling stressed, nervous, depressed or even bored.


You can help stop these triggers by dealing with your emotions in other healthy ways. Try meditation, deep breathing or exercise to help manage stress and anxiety. Exercise is also a great way to beat boredom and fight depression. Listen to calming music or talk to a friend who can encourage you to keep up your efforts to quit.


Pattern triggers

Sometimes you’re used to smoking when you do something else, such as drinking coffee or alcohol. This is known as a pattern trigger. You may also like to smoke after eating or during a work break.


Change your routine to help avoid these patterns. Chew your favorite gum, suck on a hard candy or mint or go for a walk. Try brushing your teeth after meals, coloring in an adult coloring book or squeezing a stress relief ball.


Social triggers

Many people want to smoke at bars, parties or when they’re with people who smoke. These can be powerful triggers for you to smoke.


It’s best to avoid these triggers if you’re trying to quit. Instead, surround yourself with people who don’t smoke or who want you to quit. Try taking a class or find a hobby, such as painting or cycling.


Withdrawal triggers

Your body will crave nicotine when you quit smoking. Nicotine is very addictive and you may go through withdrawal. Withdrawal triggers include:

•  Cravings for cigarettes or e-cigarettes

•  Feeling like you need to do something with your hands or mouth

•  Feeling restless or uncomfortable


Withdrawal can be very difficult to manage. As with other triggers, spend time with people who don’t smoke and who want you to quit. Find things to do that have nothing to do with smoking. Avoid places or situations where you might see or smell cigarettes or vaping.


Quitting is hard. But if you have support from your doctor, family and friends, you can do it. Millions of people have quit and you can too!



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