Top tips

The first few weeks after quitting smoking are hard for everyone and there are many temptations to pick up 'just one cigarette'.

Take a look at our top ten tips to help you take your mind off smoking and deal with cravings:

  1. Take extra care of yourself. Drink water, eat well, and get enough rest. This can help you have the energy you may need to handle extra stress.
  2. Avoid spicy and sugary foods - they tend to enhance cravings for cigarettes.
  3. Treat yourself to something special with the money you've saved by not smoking. You could either give yourself a small reward every couple of days or save up for a bigger treat at the end of your first month of not smoking. Check out our smoking calculator to see how much you'll save.
  4. If you miss the feeling of having a cigarette in your hand, hold something else such as a pen, a coin or a key.
  5. If you miss the feeling of having something in your mouth, try toothpicks, cinnamon sticks, chewing gum, sugar-free lollipops or celery.
  6. Remind yourself of the reasons why you quit - put a picture of the people who are the most important to you somewhere you see it every day, or keep one handy in your purse or wallet.
  7. Remember that having a cigarette won't change the stress situation you are going through and will add to it!
  8. Keep busy and find a distraction to take your mind off cigarettes - watch a film, read a newspaper or magazine, call a friend or family member for a chat, do some housework, go for a walk or a run or take up a new hobby.
  9. Identify your trigger situations when you would usually have a cigarette, such as first thing in the morning or after meals, so that you are well prepared to handle them without a cigarette. Change your routine so you don't have time to smoke or your mind is focusing on something else.
  10. Don't get too downhearted about a failed quit attempt, some people don’t manage to stop smoking at first and may need to try lots of times to finally quit and we will support you all the way!
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