23 July 2006

No desire to smoke

It is quite remarkable that people wouldn’t stop smoking after trying their first cigarette, which usually causes coughing and nausea. However, many smokers enjoy the taste and smell of tobacco smoke so they carry on with this potentially deadly habit. Sometimes the habit of smoking creates satisfaction and relaxation itself. For some, it is a social habit and makes them feel like they are part of the crowd. This is mainly the case with people who are timid. Having something to do with their hands when they are around people helps them to feel more in control and self-confident.

When a person develops an addiction, there are two components to it. One of these is a physical addiction to the substances themselves. The other is a psychological dependence. Surprisingly enough breaking the physical addiction with cigarettes is very easy. In fact, if you think about it you sleep through the night for about eight hours without thinking or waking up for a cigarette. Yet, when you are awake you may be a chain smoker, lighting one after the other. If the physical need was that great, you would wake up in the night. Any physical need dissipates within days.

Smoking to a smoker is a means of obtaining nicotine and the craving for that nicotine is going to be no less when you tell him or her that it's delivered by a health destroying, cancer instigating, stroke inducing, emphysema causing, heart attack inducing cigarette. Nicotine is delivered fast to the bloodstream and fast to the brain where it is wanted. Smoking takes less than 10 seconds to get the nicotine to the brain and that is important because the cravings are short lived but intense.

Once you can understand that nicotine addiction is the problem and you understand that you must overcome that addiction, you build on your chances to stop smoking. Smokers are motivated to quit smoking, but motive does not necessarily provide means and opportunity. If smoking is to be overcome, smokers must believe that they have no desire to smoke. Understanding how they can reach the point of not desiring a cigarette is key in removing the perennial problem of relapsing ex-smokers. No one ever said it was easy but millions quit every year so it can be done.

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