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Why itís Hard to Quit Smoking

Any former smoker will tell you that quitting isnít easy. A testament to that: The American Cancer Society says 70 percent of smokers want to quit but well over half of those that want to quit never even attempt to do so. That means out of 100 smokers that want to quit nearly 60 wonít even try.

Some say itís because quitting is so difficult and quitting for good often requires multiple attempts. In fact, if you were addicted to both heroine and nicotine, smoking would probably be more difficult of the two.

So, why is it so hard to quit?

The simple answer is nicotine addiction, but it is not so simple. Itís two-fold. There is physical addiction and psychological addiction.

Physical Addiction
Nicotine is naturally occurring drug in tobacco. When you inhale smoke from a cigarette, nicotine spreads throughout the body and messes up the link between nerve cells. This communication breakdown between cells causes you to have a relaxing feeling. When that feeling passes the body craves the feeling again, craves the nicotine, so you want to smoke more. Like drinking alcohol, the more you smoke the more your tolerance builds and more cigarettes are needed to get, and sustain, that buzz.

While trying to quit the physical addiction will cause nicotine withdrawal. The absence of nicotine will cause your body to react with symptoms such as:

  • Impatience or Irritability
  • Trouble sleeping and Fatigue
  • Depression, Anxiety or Hostility
  • Difficulty Concentrating

Psychological Addiction
Over long periods of time as a smoker, a person will begin to use the buzz achieved by nicotine to either mask pain or sorrow and help deal with unpleasant situations or improve and add to the enjoyment of other activities.

If physical addiction were the only issue, there may be a higher success rate for quitting. But dealing with physical dependence and the psychological addiction simultaneously can be overwhelming. Because cigarettes can be used as an aide, this tool for coping, the attachment is stronger. These addictions take such a hold on people that the FDA says an astonishing 50 percent of people who survive surgery for lung cancer due to smoking will reach for a cigarette during recovery.

Smoking becomes linked to so many day to day routines that quitting can affect every part of your life. Talking on the phone, finishing a meal, having a beer or morning coffee, driving, winding down after a long day are all things that may prompt the desire to smoke. And getting angry, frustrated, scared or embarrassed can do the same thing.

Viscomi: 'Tis the season to stop smoking

This time of year, we often think about our health. In the fall and winter months, we get flu shots and other immunizations to protect us from illnesses of the season. During the holidays, we count our blessings, which often include being in good health.

Published:  Thu, 23 Nov 2017 21:06:00 GMT



Another View: Smoking and lung cancer - a reason to quit

The holiday season serves as a reminder of what we are most thankful for as well as what we take for granted, like each breath of air through our lungs. During National Lung Cancer Awareness Month, as an oncology nurse navigator at Sutter Auburn Faith ...

Published:  Thu, 23 Nov 2017 08:02:00 GMT



DR. JASON CLEMONS: Difficulties with quitting smoking are much better than the alternative (column)

Mark Twain knew how hard it is to quit smoking. "Quitting smoking is easy. I've done it a thousand times," he once said. It's not easy to quit when nicotine withdrawal sets in within hours of the last cigarette. Coping with dizziness, depression ...

Published:  Mon, 20 Nov 2017 11:17:00 GMT



Thanksgiving Quit Smoking Help

This Thanksgiving season, I'd like to remind readers to thank a co-worker, friend or family member who has quit smoking. Many smokers say quitting is the hardest thing they have ever done and any amount of recognition can help someone stay quit. Smoking is ...

Published:  Mon, 20 Nov 2017 14:09:00 GMT



Quit Smoking - Your Heart Will Thank You

The following is sponsored by Intermountain Medical Center Heart Institute. The heart can be considered the engine of your body. It works nonstop to make sure your whole body gets an even flow of blood, circulating oxygen and other important things to your ...

Published:  Mon, 20 Nov 2017 09:51:00 GMT



How to Quit Smoking FAQs

When it comes to quitting smoking, weight gain is the #1 concern of women and the #2 concern of men. Even if you do gain a bit, it's nothing compared to all the good things you're doing for yourself. If you continue to gain weight after a few months, try ...

Published:  Thu, 23 Nov 2017 15:45:00 GMT



Obamacare may have helped increase number who quit smoking

FRIDAY, Nov. 17, 2017 -- States that expanded Medicaid under the Affordable Care Act saw a greater increase in low-income adults who quit smoking than did states that did not expand Medicaid, a new study found. Under the health care act, states that ...

Published:  Fri, 17 Nov 2017 12:24:00 GMT



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