Most smokers sincerely want to quit. They know cigarettes threaten their health, set a bad example for their children, annoy their acquaintances and cost an inordinate amount of money.
Nobody can force a smoker to quit. It's something each person has to decide for himself, and will require a personal commitment by smoker. What kind of smoker are you? What do you get out of smoking? What does it do for you? It is important to identify what you use smoking for and what kind of satisfaction you feel that you are getting from smoking.
Many smokers use cigarette as a kind of crutch in moments of stress or discomfort, and on occasion it may work; cigarette is sometimes used as a tranquilizer. But heavy smoker, person who tries to handle severe personal problems by smoking heavily all day long, is apt to discover that cigarettes do not help him deal with his problems effectively.
When it comes to quitting, this kind of smoker may find it easy to stop when everything is going well, but may be tempted to start again in a time of crisis. Physical exertion, eating, drinking, or social activity in moderation may serve as useful substitutes for cigarettes, even in times of tension. The choice of a substitute depends on what will achieve same effects without having any appreciable risk.
Once a smoker understands his own smoking behavior, he will be able to cope more successfully and select best quitting approaches for himself and type of life-style he leads.
Because smoking is a form of addiction, 80 percent of smoker who quit usually experience some withdrawal symptoms. These may include headache, light-headedness, nausea, diarrhea, and chest pains. Psychological symptoms, such as anxiety, short-term depression, and inability to concentrate, may also appear. The main psychological symptom is increased irritability. People become so irritable, in fact, that they say they feel "like killing somebody." Yet there is no evidence that quitting smoking leads to physical violence.