Is summer the best time to quit smoking?
You might have tried quitting smoking before, but it hasn’t worked out. Smoking is embedded in one’s routine and to break that habit is not easy.
Published: Tuesday 30 July 2019
We all know that quitting smoking is tough. You might have tried quitting smoking before, but it hasn’t worked out. Smoking is embedded in one’s routine and to break that habit is not easy.
What if we told you that the best time to quit is now?
Summer time means the sun is out, workload is (sometimes) lighter, and your routine is usually more relaxed. Not only that, but most of us want to look and feel our best during this time especially if we’re going on holiday.
Here’s why you should consider quitting smoking this summer:
- Less stress
The majority of smokers tend to smoke during stressful situations. Also, the feeling of stress and anxiety is often felt during smoking cessation as part of the withdrawal symptoms. Summer is usually a time where you are more relaxed, especially if you are travelling abroad. You are calmer, sleep better and you have the time to take care of yourself. There’s nothing worse than trying to quit during a stress period in life.
- Change in routine
Your routine is usually influenced by your smoking habits. If smoke regularly, you might smoke after meals, in your car, during work breaks. Summer is usually a period of time where you go on more holidays and a chance to break away from your daily routine. Develop some new routines that you don’t normally associate with smoking and replace the time you’d normally take up smoking with a more positive activity.
- Exercise becomes easier
Summer time offers infinite ways to exercise - going for walks or taking up an outdoor exercise are just some of the ways you can get fit in summer. Exercising also reduces the withdrawal symptoms associated to smoking and reduces the urge to smoke. Exercising can help to manage stress levels too. Many people turn to smoking during stressful times but exercising will release endorphins and reduce cortisol levels associated with stress and anxiety.
- Better physical appearance
There are many more opportunities to socialise during summer – BBQ’s, weddings, holidays, festivals and you want to be looking your best during these events. Smoking can change your physical appearance by making you age quicker, change hair colour, yellow teeth and cause an unpleasant smell. This will encourage more people to quit during summer to protect your skin from any further damage.
- Sleep better
It’s hard enough to sleep in the summer when it’s warm, but the heat might not be the only reason causing you to feel restless at night. Smoking might also be contributing to your lack of sleep. Smokers tend to take longer falling asleep, and spend less time asleep. It can also increase the likelihood of snoring or cause sleep apnoea as the chemicals present in cigarettes can cause your airways to swell. Being nicotine free will help you to sleep better at night, and cause less disruptions to your natural sleep-wake cycle.
How to quit smoking?
To help you quit smoking, use the S-T-A-R-T method.
- S – Set a quit date
Choose a date preferably within the upcoming weeks so you can have a clear indication between your time as a smoker and your new smoke free life. Setting a date will give you time to prepare without losing any motivation to quit.
- T – Tell people
Tell your friends, family, co-workers that you plan to quit smoking and ask for their support to keep you motivated to quit. Find someone else who also wants to quit too so you can offer encouragement to each other.
- A – Anticipate the challenges
Smoking relapses usuallyoccur within the first 3 months of quitting. The main reason is giving into cravings. People will turn to smoking through periods of stress, drinking or emotional events. Prepare ahead with nicotine withdrawal medications.
- R – Remove all traces of cigarettes and tobacco
Throw away all cigarette related products, including ashtrays and lighters. To remove the smell associated with cigarettes, wash your clothes, clean your car and steam furniture.
- T – Tell your doctor
Your doctor can prescribe you with medication which can help with your withdrawal symptoms. Similarly, online pharmacies such as Pharmica can provide you with medication such as Champix which can help relieve your cravings for a cigarette and withdrawal symptoms associated with quitting smoking.