Step 1: Have an action plan
Once you’ve made up your mind to quit smoking, set a quit date, develop a plan.
REMEMBER: Choose your reasons. Knowing why you want to quit can keep you motivated and stay on track with your action plan.
Step 2: Don't do it alone
Quitting smoking is easier when you have the support from family and friends. Let them know that you’re planning to quit, ask for their support, and tell them what they can do to help. Spend time with people who want you to succeed. Talk to people who have successfully quit smoking and ask for their advice.
Step 3: Stay committed
Replace your smoking habit with a healthy one like exercise. Make plans for dinner or a movie with non-smoking friends. Chew sugarless gum—it keeps your mouth busy and helps prevent cavities too.
Step 4: Know your triggers
Identify things that will make you more likely to smoke, and stay away from them. Some common triggers include stress, alcohol, coffee, and hanging out with smokers. Throw out cigarettes, lighters and ashtrays, and go to places where smoking isn’t allowed.
Step 5: Reward your accomplishments
Every hour or day you go without a cigarette is an achievement. Take it hour by hour, and reward yourself for small successes. With all the money you save on cigarettes, you can treat yourself to a fancy dinner, a night at the movies, a hiking trip or any other smoke-free activity.
Step 6: Seek medical professional help
The first few weeks are the hardest when it comes to quitting smoking. You will deal with uncomfortable feelings, temptations to smoke, withdrawal and/or cigarette cravings. Whether it is a quitline, a mobile app, a support group or a good friend, make sure you have a support system available at all times.
Here are some options you can consider for your action plan:
- MQuit – a quitline that you can call for support and information. Lines are open from 9 am to 6 pm. Call +604-653 5999 or visit jomquit.com.my
- The National Cancer Society’s Quit Smoking Clinic – offers a combination of counselling and nicotine replacement therapy. Call +603-2630 6670 or email: firstname.lastname@example.org.
- Institut Jantung Negara’s Quit Smoking Clinic – provides counselling, support, lifestyle assessment, treatment and medication, nicotine and non-nicotine replacement therapy together with bi-monthly support group gatherings. Call +603-2617 8200 or visit ijn.com.my/specialty-clinics/quit-smoking-clinic/ for more info.
These clinics should also be able to recommend options for medication, support and therapies such as soft laser therapy, hypnotherapy or other methods.