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Can You Quit Smoking Cold Turkey?

By Edited Nov 13, 2013 0 2

Many will state that quitting smoking and other forms of tobacco cold turkey won’t work. Smokers in general pay millions of dollars to find better alternatives largely because of their belief that cold turkey just won’t work.


You can quit smoking.

Even using the cold-turkey method.

Stop Smoking(84580)

What Smokers Must Endure to Quit

Mind you, it’s hard. The first several days after one quits smoking are very difficult, and non-smokers have a hard time understanding why. Many do not fully understand just how addicting the habit is and how strong the desire is to return to it. The desire makes it nearly impossible to think rationally about avoiding the need to have another smoke.

Parents might be able to understand the feeling. Just imagine that someone told you that you had to stay away from your son or daughter for one month. For many parents, the desire to see their children would grow stronger and stronger until they would find ways to distract themselves. There is a very good chance that anxiety would build up, and it would become nearly impossible not to think about seeing their children.

Some might think that analogy is ridiculous. What is similar is that the desire becomes an obsession. In the case of a smoker, it becomes difficult to think of anything else. Like the parent thinking of her child constantly, the smoker can think of nothing else other than the fact that he cannot have a cigarette.

When one quits smoking, it is often the case that any little setback can cause a relapse. It might be morning coffee. It might be a bad day at the office. It might be that you must be near other smokers. It might be that one night you drank a bit too much and let your guard down.

I smoked heavily between the ages of 21 and 24. I managed to quit cold turkey at 24, and I stayed off cigarettes for six months. I avoided the temptation to have a cigarette while drinking my coffee, while watching others smoke around me, while having drinks after work. I firmly believed that I was done.

But then I attended a New Year’s Eve party. I drank too much. I was not happy in life. Someone offered me a smoke, and I took it. And another. And another.

I stayed away from cigarettes for the next couple of weeks, but the cravings had returned. My mind was not as strong, and I eventually gave in. I returned to heavy smoking for the next six years.

 


There Are Common-Sense Solutions That Work

This might sound as if my experience supports the conclusion that quitting cold turkey isn’t possible. However, that is not my point at all. The cold-turkey method worked just fine. The problem was what comes down the road, and none of the products out there effectively address what happens when you have a relapse several months or even several years after quitting.

What I firmly believe is that anyone who is even hopelessly addicted to smoking and tobacco can kick the habit for good. I even believe that anyone can quit cold turkey. However, this process requires more than a program and more than a drug. It requires lifestyle changes and might even require a complete lifestyle makeover. 


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Comments

Feb 27, 2012 10:26pm
DebDavies
The only times I ever managed to quit cold turkey was when I was pregnant. Friends tell me to just keep trying and one of these times it will stick. The worst part or me is how easily distracted and confused I get when I manage to quit for a few days.
Feb 28, 2012 5:58pm
dodger71
I became a workout addict, which finally kicked my tobacco habit for good. That wasn't by design. After quitting, I spent weeks chewing sunflower seeds and toothpicks when I became anxious, and those were hardly substitutes for tobacco. But once I started working out daily, it didn't take long before I did not crave any tobacco.
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