Quitting smoking can seem like the hardest thing, no matter how you do it, but the idea of quitting cold turkey can be a bit daunting. Doing it this way may not be the right option for everyone, but given the effect that smoking has on the body, getting it over and done with does have its charm. Let’s take a look at the process of quitting cold turkey and new alternatives to help you do it.
Quit Smoking Cold Turkey
Get in Quitting Mindset
To quit smoking cold turkey, you will need to prepare for distorted thinking—that is, the many rationalizations and considerations that can hinder your plans (e.g., one more cigarette or I’ll start next week). One easy way to do this is to start writing down the many reasons why you’re determined to quit smoking. Write them down in the notes app of your smartphone so that you can easily access them when a moment of vulnerability hits.
Nicotine Withdrawal Is Real and It’s Coming
Quitting cold turkey is hard primarily because nicotine withdrawal may be more severe when you stop smoking abruptly. Nicotine is extremely addictive, and like other drugs, you will experience some unwanted side effects as your body works hard to subdue the craving and rid itself of the harsh chemicals.
Fortunately, nicotine withdrawal is a temporary phase in quitting cigarettes. If you see it through, the following symptoms will recede in time, and better days will be ahead of you. Some unwanted side effects are:
- Sore throat
- Inability to concentrate
- Feeling hungrier than usual
- Dry mouth
Expect these symptoms, and do what you can to be ready when they hit. Keep a water bottle with you at all times so that you’re always hydrated. Also, stock up on throat lozenges. Fill up your fridge with healthy treats that you can easily reach for when you get hungry.
Temptation Is the Enemy
To avoid temptation, collect and throw away all smoking equipment (matches, ashtrays, etc.) from your home (inside and outside). Consider distancing yourself from your “smoke buddies” or whatever situation can be a trigger for you.
Be Open to Support
Similarly to nicotine withdrawal, you may experience psychological urges. These can be managed if you plan for them and understand what triggers them. Seeking support from friends and family is a good and healthy way to go about it. Let them help support and motivate you to stick with the plan.
If you’re attempting this on your own, an online support forum can be a great medium to help you stay the course. Furthermore, in-person support groups are also helpful, as you get to meet people in your area who may be going through what you are.
Build New Habits
Breaking away from unhealthy habits and creating new ones is a must when quitting cold turkey. Do you always spark up on your way home from work? Do you light one up when you’re stressed?
Take a realistic look at your smoking habits and patterns, and then find some healthy distractions and alternatives, such as:
- Wake up early and go for a walk.
- Try different kinds of coffee (cold brews, frappes).
- Try organic CBD products (hemp oils, CBD gummies, candies).
- Stock up on some healthy foods.
- Keep your hands and mind busy.
Pros and Cons of Quitting Cold Turkey
Quitting cold turkey, like other techniques, has its pros and cons.
- May increase your chances of lasting sobriety from nicotine.
- Withdrawal manifestations usually peak within the first seven days, meaning that quitting cold turkey gets you over the hill faster than gradually cutting back on nicotine.
- Your withdrawal symptoms may be more severe than with gradual cutbacks, though these are short-lived.
- It’s challenging and requires a lot of determination and self-control, especially if you’re a long time smoker.
CBD May Be a Safer Alternative
There’s no single way to go about quitting smoking that works for everyone. Some people have what it takes to deal with intense withdrawal symptoms associated with stopping cold turkey. Others may prefer to quit slowly and deal with more moderate symptoms for a more prolonged period. If quitting cold turkey isn’t for you, you can look into other ways to stop, such as CBD.
CBD products have exploded in popularity in the last few years. People are even turning to the natural compound to help them stop smoking as it is organic, non-habit forming, and promotes an unmatched sense of relaxation – one that can help when faced with intense periods of withdrawals.
Quitting cold turkey isn’t for everyone, but with some mental preparation, motivation, and willpower, you can do it. Quitting smoking is the best thing you can do for your health.
Nicotine harms every part of your body. Once you finally cleanse the nicotine out of your system, you’ll feel unimaginably better and reduce your risk of heart and lung diseases as well as several cancers.