You won’t be able to avoid all of your smoking triggers. And learning how to manage cigarette cravings takes practice. So, when a craving is triggered, it’s important to have a plan to beat that urge to smoke.
Cravings typically last 5 to 10 minutes. It might be uncomfortable, but try to wait it out. Make a list of things you can do to manage the craving. Here are a few to try.
Even if you use nicotine replacement therapy (NRT), you might have a craving that’s difficult to deal with. Think about trying a short-acting NRT, such as a lozenge or gum, plus long-acting NRT, such as the patch, to get past the craving.
Try distracting yourself for a few minutes by being helpful to a friend, family member, or co-worker. This takes the focus off yourself and how you are feeling and instead allows you to think of another person’s needs. It can be a helpful way to cope with a craving until it passes. Plus, doing good deeds can have positive effects on your health, like reducing stress. Managing stress can be a key part of quitting smoking.
Do whatever it takes to beat the urge to smoke. Keep trying different things until you find what works for you. Just don't smoke. Not even one puff!
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