An NCI-designated Comprehensive Cancer Center
By City of Hope | November 8, 2018
It’s no secret that tobacco in any form is a major cause of cancer, and those who smoke have an increased chance of dying from cancer when compared with those who’ve never smoked. 
A recent study found that women who quit smoking after they were diagnosed with breast cancer had lower rates of death than those who continued to smoke (Hamer & Warner, 2017).
Many interventions to help you quit are covered by insurance, including cessation programs, nicotine replacements, medication, support groups and counseling. Studies show that using a combination of these approaches can improve your chances of success.  
Consider these tips for quitting:
  1. Seek help. Talk to your doctor about finding a smoking cessation program with medical professionals who specialize in helping people quit.
  2. Be passionate. Quitting has the power to transform your life and the lives of your friends and family, so stay focused on your goal.
  3. Give yourself the right tools. Taking appropriate medications — such as Zyban and Chantix — can help you manage the emotionally and physically painful withdrawal symptoms.
  4. Don’t get discouraged if you relapse. Kicking the habit is hard; most people who’ve successfully quit tried many times. Remind yourself that each try brings you one step closer to achieving your goal.
  5. Commit. Promise yourself to keep your appointments, and don’t miss meetings because you started smoking again — that’s when you most need help.
  6. Be patient, but persistent. Some people can quit cold turkey, but for most, it doesn’t happen overnight. It takes time and effort to quit smoking for good, so expect slow and steady progress.
  7. Remember you’re not alone. The best evidence suggests having support triples your chances of success, compared to going it alone. Ask your health care team for help.

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