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Quit Guide: Quitting

Steps to Take on Your Quit Day

Today's the day you start your smokefree life! Remind your family and friends that today is your quit date. Ask them to support you during the first few days and weeks. They can help you through the rough spots.

Using Your Support Program

If you decided to use a support program, use it fully. Go to the sessions. Call your telephone quitline, 1-800-QUIT-NOW (1-800-784-8669). Visit your Internet site. The more support you get, the more likely you will quit for good.

Are you using medicine to help you quit? If so, follow the directions. If you don't, you're more likely to go back to smoking. Also, don't rush to stop using the medicine. Stick with it for at least 12 weeks. Or follow your doctor's advice.

Keep Busy

  • Keep very busy today.
    • Go to a movie.
    • Exercise.
    • Take long walks.
    • Go bike riding.
  • Spend as much free time as you can where smoking isn't allowed. Some good places are malls, libraries, museums, theaters, department stores, and places of worship.
  • Do you miss having a cigarette in your hand? Hold something else. Try a pencil, a paper clip, a marble, or a water bottle.
  • Do you miss having something in your mouth? Try toothpicks, cinnamon sticks, lollipops, hard candy, sugarfree gum, or carrot sticks.
  • Drink a lot of water and fruit juice. Avoid drinks like wine and beer. They can trigger you to smoke.

Stay Away from What Tempts You

  • Instead of smoking after meals, get up from the table. Brush your teeth or go for a walk.
  • If you always smoke while driving, try something new: Listen to a new radio station or your favorite music. Take a different route. Or take the train or bus for a while, if you can.
  • Stay away from things that you connect with smoking. Do it today and for the next few weeks. These may include:
    • Watching your favorite TV show
    • Sitting in your favorite chair
    • Having a drink before dinner
  • Do things and go places where smoking is not allowed. Keep this up until you're sure that you can stay smokefree.
  • Remember, most people don't smoke. Try to be near nonsmokers if you must be somewhere you'll be tempted to smoke, for example at a party or in a bar.
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In the Quit Guide...
Thinking about quitting
Why quit?
What's in a cigarette?
Reasons for quitting
Why is quitting so hard?
Preparing to quit
The basic steps
Medicines that can help
Other support
•Steps on quit day
Managing cravings
Withdrawal symptoms
What to do if you slip
Staying quit
Sticking with it
Resources if you slip