You’ve done it! By deciding to read this book, you have taken a significant step toward breaking your addiction to cigarettes, and are on the way to a tobacco-free life. Maybe you’ve tried quitting before, only to return to cigarettes after days, weeks, or even months of being smoking-free. But be assured that you can stop smoking. In fact, according to the American Lung Association, well over 45 million Americans have already quit. How did they do it? They found the method that worked for them and they stuck with it. Often, it wasn’t the first method they had tried. In fact, most smokers attempt to quit several times before they are successful--before they find the technique that works for them. This book was designed to guide you in finding the quitting method that’s right for you so that you will never smoke again.
Will quitting be easy? No. Early in my life, I learned just how addictive cigarettes can be. My uncle was at death’s door over twenty years ago. Not yet forty-five years of age, he had heart problems and ultimately had to undergo triple bypass surgery. Still, he smoked. My aunt couldn’t understand why he was slowly killing himself, but no matter how he tried, he couldn’t kick the habit. Finally, his doctor told him, “Alan, if you don’t quit smoking, you’ll be dead in seven years.” Something clicked, and he never picked up a cigarette again.
The good news is that it’s not necessary to face a life-threatening condition to quit smoking. Once you understand how cigarettes snare you, and what they do not only to your health but also to the health of your loved ones, it becomes clear that you have to quit. That’s why Part One of Never Smoke Again begins by taking a long, hard look at cigarettes, why we smoke them, and how they keep us coming back for more, even when we want desperately to toss them away. It then discusses the many health consequences of tobacco--consequences that go far beyond respiratory illness and lung cancer. Finally, Part One prepares you for your Quit Date by helping you access your core values and cement your resolve. By the time you finish the last page, you’ll be ready to stop for good!
Part Two is about making that all-important choice of anti-smoking techniques. In each of ten chapters, you’ll learn about one of the top ten methods of quitting, including cold turkey; tapering off; nicotine patches, gum, lozenges, nasal spray, and inhaler; Zyban; Chantix; and hypnosis. What exactly is each method? How does it work? How do you use it? What are its risks and drawbacks? And, perhaps most important, does it work? In each case, you’ll find answers to these questions, along with proven tips to help you succeed. Special Pros and Cons sections highlight the important features of each technique, making it easier to pick the tool or tools most suited to your needs.
As you read about the various quitting techniques now available, one of the most important things you’ll learn is that these techniques do not necessarily have to be used singly, but can often be combined. Quitting experts, for instance, often recommend pairing a nicotine replacement therapy like the patch with a prescription aid such as Zyban. This can greatly increase your chance of success. And, of course, hypnosis--a drug-free therapy--can be combined with any of the other techniques to further strengthen your resolve and keep your motivation high. Remember this as you design your own stop-smoking program, because a smart blend of tools may be just what you need. But also be aware that these tools should never be combined without the help of your doctor, as an unwise mix can cause problems. In fact, before beginning any anti-smoking program--even one that relies on over-the-counter aids--it is a good idea to consult with your physician. Besides making the quitting process safer, a doctor’s expert guidance can also make it far more effective.
Throughout this book, I emphasize that knowledge is power, and that support is key to success. That’s why Never Smoke Again ends with a list of Resources, including organizations that can supply further information; in-person, online, and phone support; quitting guidelines; and much more. A world of assistance is just a mouse click or phone call away. Don’t overlook all the valuable help that has been made available to you.
Although Never Smoke Again provides the information you need to choose the quitting method that’s right for you, it’s important to understand that no method or combination of methods, no matter how effective, can quit for you. You have to approach the quitting process with firm resolve, and you have to be ready to work toward your goal. But make no mistake about it: You can stop smoking. You have within you the strength necessary to kick the habit. Never Smoke Again will show you how to access that power, team it up with a proven quitting technique, and begin a new, healthy, cigarette-free life.