Plan to Quit Smoking in the New Year

Dec 27, 2011

As 2012 approaches, it brings with it New Year's resolutions and promises by many to live a healthier lifestyle, including quitting smoking.

The Mid-Atlantic American Lung Association's CEO, Deb Brown, said that it's not uncommon for people to attempt quitting around the New Year.

"There are about six out of ten smokers who actually require multiple attempts to quit smoking," Brown said. "But we know that 80 percent of individuals who smoke out there, at some point in time, are trying to quit smoking."

Brown advises that anyone attempting to give up smoking should set a starting date and make it public, so that you can't back out. She said that it's important to consult a doctor about possible medications to alleviate the effects of quitting, and to establish a strong support group in your effort. A combination of quit aids and counseling will often be a better and easier method of quitting than attempting to quit "cold turkey."

Quitting smoking can be one of the most difficult habits to break, but Brown said that it's important not to become discouraged and learn from past failures to stop.

"It takes them anywhere between six and ten attempts to quit, so some people already know what works for them and what doesn't," Brown said. "So people might need to go back and refine that plan a little, but certainly it's a way for them to continue moving forward to a healthier lifestyle."

Running, walking, and getting adequate sleep while staying hydrated and eating a balanced diet are all healthy ways to combat the stress of quitting, according to Brown.