SELECTED QUITTING RESOURCES
Whether you are ready to quit or just thinking about it, call 1-800-QUIT NOW for free support with a trained counselor. When you call, a friendly staff person will offer a choice of free services, including mailed self-help literature, a referral list of other programs in your community, and one-one-counseling over the phone.
Another quit line is the the National Cancer Institute's Smoking Quitline, 1-877-44U-Quit, which also offers proactive counseling by trained personnel.
"Re-learn life without cigarettes." That's the motto of a new bilingual website championed by Former US Surgeon General Koop in 2007 that aims to help smokers kick the habit for good. At BecomeAnEX.org, smokers can create free, personalized quit plans while tracking the "triggers" that lead them to light up (i.e., stress, alcohol, parties, or a "jerk-face" boss). And when those cravings start to mount, a live virtual support group will be there to help.
This December, 2008 US News and World Report article begins, "Never mind cancer or heart disease for a moment. Here are some nonobvious reasons to snub cigarettes."
It's not enough simply to use a product. Counseling, and as well as utilizing the classic, boilerplate points for quitting, are critical to succeeding. Our Quitting Tips page includes a useful guide to these critically important boilerplate points. These will empower you with valuable techniques, and will also strengthen your motivation and resolve.
American Lung Association's
The venerable Mayo Clinic offers its Nicotine Dependence Center, including a very pricey in-patient program for quitting. They offer individual counseling, an 8-day residential program, and a work site program for companies. They report a success rate after one-year of 23 to 45 percent, depending on the program. That is well above the average. With locations in Arizona, Minnesota and Florida, this is perhaps the Rolls Royce of stop smoking programs.
Another excellent inpatient program is offered, at St. Helena Hospital in Northern California's Napa valley. Or just call them at (707) 963-6360. You check in for a week, and it's not cheap! But the wealthy may need a bit of extra support in quitting, as they do not always have the strongest self-denial muscles.
Are you able to easily put off getting a brand new car, or going to a $60 per head restaurant? How about postponing that vacation in Monte Carlo, Aspen, or Florida?
If you can do those things, chances are you won't need an inpatient program, and you'll have all the self-denial muscles you'll need to quit smoking. But you'll need to flex them. And yes, it might hurt a bit.
At www.quitnet.org you can go to a chat room where those quitting are doing it together, not alone. It can be a great source of support -- like a Nicotine Anonymous meeting, but online. This site was put together by the Massachusetts Department of Public Health's Tobacco Control Program.
a chat room, at Nicotine
Anonymous meetings, you'll find warm bodies, which
can be more comforting than a computer screen. If this appeals
to you more, pick up your telephone and ask directory assistance
for the phone number of your local Nicotine Anonymous chapter.
These are based on the classic 12-steps, borrowed from AA. The
meetings are free and run entirely by volunteers. If there are
no meetings in your city, try calling (800) 642-0666, call a
nearby city's directory assistance, or check the website. There
you can also find out how to start your own Nicotine
Anonymous meeting. That's how it spread all over the U.S.
Also check out these cool
youth-oriented QUITTING sites
opening animated page says it all -- YOU are
a target. But your mind is a weapon. "Question It" provides
tips to help smokers win their personal battle against tobacco.
What products quit smoking
programs work best?
Study compares Zyban, nicotine replacement
and a combination of both treatments
Combining the nicotine patch
and the nicotine inhaler
Two hits of nicotine are better than one if you want to quit smoking, new research shows. A French study suggests smokers may have a better chance to beat their bad habit with a nicotine inhaler and a patch instead of just an inhaler.
At six weeks, 60.5 percent of those who used the combination had quit, while only 47.5 percent of those who used an inhaler alone had stopped, the study finds. At 12 weeks, the numbers were 42 percent and 31 percent, respectively.
After a year, 19.5 percent using the combination had stayed quit, but only 14 percent who used the inhaler alone had remained smokefree.
The study, conducted at the French National Institute of Health and Medical Research, appears in a recent issue of the Archives of Internal Medicine.
This Cochrane Review study done in 1996 and updated in November, 2007, found that nicotine replacement therapies like the patch, gum or inhaler increased chances of quitting by 50% to 70%.
Bear in mind that with no program, only 5% of quitters are still smokefree at the end of 12 months. A 50% increase in the quit rate would mean that 7.5% of those using NRT were successful after 12 months.
Laser treatment is a newly available method. It's for the adventurous; as of November, 2005, we know of no university studies published in mainstream medical journals which provide reliable data on their success rate 12 months after treatment. But with the patch and nicotine gum at an 85% failure rate after 12 months, it might be something to try. Freedom Laser Therapy's laser treatment claims to alleviate nicotine withdrawal symptoms. They also offer a 30 minute video on the psychological aspects of the addiction, and a 30 day vitamin detoxification regimen.
The Schick-Shadel Treatment Centers offer aversion therapy -- self-administering a mild electric shock from an ordinary 9 volt battery as one smokes a cigarette. Studies show a 95% initial success rate, and 50% after a year -- better than all the other programs! But most pharmaceutical companies today are reluctant to add an aversion therapy option to their helpful products. Sadly, they regard aversion therapy as being "not consumer friendly." The Foundation for a Smokefree America hopes that one company will soon get behind this important and proven method of qutting smoking.
Alternative therapies such as hypnosis, acupuncture and herbs have been shown to be far less effective than the above methods. Several controlled studies found they were ineffective.