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Quitting Smoking

Arty God

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I started smoking when I was 12 and stop when I was 43. I try every trick in the book quit smoking and 2 to 3 mounth start up again. Finaly gave it up for the last 3 years and feel mush better then before, the only thing that I can pass on is never give up trying it will happen if you want it to.
 

MommyMedic

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Wow, if I ever plan on starting again, it will be when my husband is not around! That was a huge factor too - he quit the year before me and that helped me a lot. We take turns talking each other out of starting again. Sometimes one of us tries to talk the other into starting again, but we make it through. (So far.) Every cigarette you don't put in your mouth is one less time poisoning yourself, and counts as quitting, in my book. So even if that's all you manage to abstain from, it's an accomplishment; don't be too hard on yourselves, you're up against a powerful enemy. Good on you guys! Also, don't be afraid to get some help with the physical side of things, like the cessation aids Hot Lips was referring to. I couldn't since I was pregnant, but if I could have, I would have taken all the help I could get. The technology is leaping ahead in medicine just like everything else, and even if you've tried something before and it didn't help, you may be surprised by what is available now.
 

CallOfDuty

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  I have found myself a little bit of balance in the smoking department.  I have stopped smoking cigarettes, but now as a treat once a week, after school on friday afternoons, we head down to the fleet club, have a few beers and I have myself a couple of Captain Black cigars.  The sweet ones. They are awesome, and for some strange reason I find they are not addicting at all.  I can literally wait one whole week to have one again no problem!
  Cheers guys, keep up the fight
Steve :cdn:
 

Hot Lips

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Thanks Steve...I would look a little odd hauling on a cigar though  ::)

I get what you are saying...I used to do that with smokes...just a couple with a couple drinks from time to time...

HL

 

Mike Baker

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Here is my story. I started when I was 13. I smoked a LOT. I thought it was "cool" to smoke and hang out with the big crowd. Money wasn't a factor, since I stole them from family members. Then, March of this year, I decided to join the Canadian Forces. I quit that day and never smoked any more. The army made me quit you could say. Thankfully I did, because one of my friends in St.Johns who was a very heavy smoker (at least 3 pack a day) was told he had lung cancer. He smoked since he was 9 and was diagnosed at 17. Too bad he never listened when people told him to quit.
 

gazelle

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Although it does have inherent risks... Zyban actually worked quite well for me...(they were dishing it out like candy in 2VP around 99 or 2000), another helpful thing that I did was bought new clothes, had my car professionally cleaned (inside) and cleaned every square inch of my apartment.... the novelty of having everything really clean and free of smoke odour / residue really helped my resolve. Granted everyone's habit and level of addiction is different, but these worked for me. Good luck, smoking is a good monkey to get off one's back.
 

Signalman150

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Well, this tale is a little embarrassing, but here' goes.

First of all, CallOfDuty, please understand I am NOT calling BS on you comment about cigars not being addictive, but I have had a different experience than you.

Most of you are talking about getting hooked as teenagers. When did I get hooked? Ummmm, how about at 47?  Yeah, yeah, I know.  Problem is that I used to hang out with a couple of other aspiring writer's at a pub here in the 'Chuk,(we were testing the theory that Hemingway's brilliance stemmed from his alcoholism), and they were smokers. I started on Backwood's cigars, which are very mild, and, found that I liked one with a beer.  For a couple of years, I only had one or two a week, so I even kidded myself I was a non-smoker.  And of course I used that old cigar smoker's standby..."I don't inhale." No big deal...until my personal life came crashing down around my ankles in '03.

Suddenly I found I was putting away a pack of five every couple of days.  On one or two occasions I've done two packs in one day.  Can you say "addiction"?  And guess what?  Somewhere along the way, I started to inhale.  This little habit is costing me in excess of $300.00/mo. I'm already fed up with it, and have tried once already to stop.  I lasted about a week. I'm not sure if Zyban would work for me, and I'm a little afraid to try having discovered it's an antidepressant.  Already had one VERY nasty experience with antidepressants, not anxious to go there again.

So, I'll try cold turkey again...tomorrow.  Well, maybe the day after. Sigh.
 

Michael OLeary

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CallOfDuty said:
... Captain Black cigars.  The sweet ones. They are awesome, and for some strange reason I find they are not addicting at all.  I can literally wait one whole week to have one again no problem! ...


Signalman150 said:
First of all, CallOfDuty, please understand I am NOT calling BS on you comment about cigars not being addictive, but I have had a different experience than you.


Personal Health: Cigar Smoking
http://www.nytimes.com/specials/women/warchive/960529_1104.html

The Health Risks

The American Lung Association cites a number of myths about the "safety" of cigar smoking, among them that cigars are a safe alternative to cigarettes, that cigar smoking is not addictive and that smoking cigars does not cause lung cancer or chronic pulmonary disease.

These are the facts:

CANCER

Cigar smoking causes cancer of the larynx, mouth, esophagus and lungs. Over all, men who smoke cigars have death rates from cancer that are 34 percent higher than those of nonsmokers. Studies that followed the fates of cigar smokers and nonsmokers over many years have shown that cigar smoking raises the risk of dying from cancers of the larynx, mouth and esophagus by 4 to 10 times. These rates are similar to those associated with cigarette smoking and are believed to reflect the fact that when cigars are puffed the smoke is held in the mouth and upper airways.

Researchers who examined cells from the larynx, the voice box, found that 99 percent of cigar smokers had "atypical cells," the first step toward malignancy, while only 25 percent of nonsmokers had them.

The chances of developing lung cancer are indeed lower for cigar smokers than for cigarette smokers, largely because most cigar smokers do not inhale. But lung-cancer death rates among cigar smokers are about three times as high as they are among nonsmokers. The risk rises with the number of cigars smoked each day, and studies in other countries indicate that for those who inhale cigar smoke, the lung cancer risk is comparable to that of cigarette smoking .

Dr. I. T. T. Higgins and colleagues at the American Health Foundation, a nonprofit research organization in New York City, have pointed out that "when cigarette smokers switch to cigars or pipes, they usually have been found to continue to inhale in the way they were accustomed to when they smoked cigarettes." For this reason, they say, "no health benefit should be anticipated from switching." These researchers found in a study of more than 6,000 people that even 30 years after quitting cigarettes, those who took up cigars faced almost five times the nonsmoker's risk of developing lung cancer.

CHRONIC LUNG DISEASE


Cigar smokers are more likely than nonsmokers to develop chronic obstructive lung disease, although again the risk is lower than that of cigarette smokers. Several studies that followed smokers and nonsmokers over a period of years showed that cigar smokers face an increased risk of dying of lung disease that may be as much as 360 percent as high as the risk for nonsmokers. An autopsy study of the lungs of 1,443 men who died in six New York and New Jersey hospitals found that the rate of emphysema among cigar smokers swas five times that of nonsmokers.

HEART AND BLOOD VESSEL DISEASE

Nicotine, the addictive drug released when any tobacco product is used, does not have to be inhaled to damage the heart and blood vessels. Nicotine can be absorbed into the blood stream through the mouth. This drug speeds up the heart and constricts blood vessels, which reduces blood flow to the heart. Two European studies showed an increased risk of heart attacks in cigar smokers, and a study of 25,000 men in Sweden found that cigar smokers were five times as likely as nonsmokers to die from a ruptured aorta, the body's main artery. And a study of 7,700 men showed a threefold increased risk of stroke among cigarette smokers who switched to cigars.

PASSIVE CIGAR SMOKE


According to the Environmental Protection Agency, the sidestream smoke from cigars is a more insidious poison than that from cigarettes. Particle emissions, which include carcinogens, from one cigar exceeded those from three cigarettes, and carbon monoxide emissions were 30 times as high.

When a cigar is smoked in an office, the agency's standard of 9 parts carbon monoxide per million parts of air can be exceeded in 20 minutes.
 

Bruce Monkhouse

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Food for thought....are we next?

Metrolife
Smokers get blown off by EU Commission
Published on: Sunday, 6th August, 2006


The world’s embattled community of smokers has taken another body-blow. Next summers, smoking will be banned in all of Britain’s pubs. But smokers now risk finding themselves excluded from Europe’s jobmarket. This week, after an Irish boss refused to hire smokers, the European Commission confirmed that smokers are one of the few minorities whose rights are not protected by anti-discrimination laws.

“If people are smoking on a coffee break or in their own time, they come back into the office and they stink,” Philip Tobin, director of Irish company Dotcom Directories, told the UK’s Daily Mail. However, after he advertised for new employees with the phrase “smokers need not apply”, the issue of discrimination was raised with the European Commissioner for employment and equal opportunities. The commissioner’s view was that smoking - unlike racial or ethnic origin, disability, age, sexual orientation and religion - is not protected by anti-discrimination laws. The British and Irish governments agreed.

A spokesperson for the UK’s Department of Trade and Industry said, “In terms of discrimination legislation, it covers sex, race, religion and sexuality, so smokers as a group aren’t protected.” This year the World Health Organisation also announced it would not hire smokers in its Geneva workplace. Simon Clark, of the British pro-smoking group Forest told the Daily Mail, “We all know employers discriminate on all sorts of grounds, from being too fat to the wrong hair colour. But for it to be so overt is depressing and shows that smokers are fair game.”

On the other hand, Philip Tobin showed no regret. “We have a small office here and it would make things unbearable for other staff,” he said. “To be honest, if these people can ignore so many warnings and all that evidence, then they haven’t got the level of intelligence I am looking for,” he said.

The situation for European smokers is also getting steadily bleaker. Smoking is already banned in pubs and restaurants in Scotland and Ireland. By next year, it will also be forbidden in public places in England and Wales. Across Europe, there are already bans - enforced with varying degrees of severity - in Ireland, Italy, Norway and Malta. The one source of comfort in the latest anti-smoking decision is that smoking is not yet acceptable grounds for sacking an employee.

Unless smokers smoke in contravention of their workplace rules, they are safe - even if they can now expect no legal protection when companies try to stop them applying for a position. In any case, smokers in the UAE reacted to Europe’s  latest assault without outrage. “To be honest, I’ve got too many other things to worry about at the moment,” said Ravi, a Dubai-based media professional.

 

Signalman150

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Michael O'Leary:  Thanks for that.  After reading you post I'm just going to save time and jump off the 109th Street bridge.  Far more efficient.  :-X
 

paracowboy

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Bruce Monkhouse said:
“To be honest, if these people can ignore so many warnings and all that evidence, then they haven’t got the level of intelligence I am looking for,”
blunt, honest, and to the point. If we're so stupid as to continue to use ths poison, maybe we don't have the common sense an employer is seeking. Or the determination, since so many of us "quit" so often.
 

Kat Stevens

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Quitting is easy; my dad did it hundreds of times........then he died of cancer.  Remember, any wimp can quit, it takes a real man to face cancer and emphysema.
 

luismariano

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Myself I stopped smoking 13 years ago (for good I hope) and now I am repulsed by cigarette smoke, but didn't become an anti-tobacco crusader like some did in my family.  Unlike them I feel a lot of compassion for people who are trying to quit smoking. Myself I used to smoke Camel plains or French cigarettes like Gitanes and Gauloises (smelly stuff!)

I can say that the first 3 weeks were the hardest part because nicotine is a very powerful drug, more addictive than cocaine, some say. So first weeks is harder because you are dealing with the physical dependence induced in your nervous system by nicotine. I remember a class in college where I learned that the faster a substance acts on the brain, the more addictive it gets and ciggies are among the fastest-acting ones.

Then there is the fight with the psychological aspect of the addiction because inconsciously we make associations like beer/cigarette, car/cigarette, coffee/cigarettes, lunch time, sex, etc.. You need to find ways to replace the time spent on smoking by doing other activities because quitting smoking will give you lots of extra time in you day.

My quick tips:
1- Tell family/friends around that you are stopping cigarettes, so they won't be offering you some inadvertantly and avoid being tempted. I really got a lot of much-needed moral support and if I was grumpy they knew why.

2- Eat lots of fruits. That helped me to substitute the habit of having a cigarette in my mouth by something else that is good for the body and non-fattening. Since nicotine is an appetite-suppressant don't be suprised if you see yourself eat more after a while, thus fruits or veggies are a good choice.

3- When I had BIG cigarette cravings, My "break the glass in case of Fire" trick was to chop a lemon in half and bite into the fruit. Unpleasant, but it worked for me.

4- Calculate the money you spend on cigarettes in a month (or year) and take that wad of cash and spend it on something that makes you happy, like a new computer or a trip out of town. That's a nice way of reinforcing positive behavior.

If for some reason you cave in, don't blame yourself too hard. I tried to stop 3 times before being nicotine free, mostly because I was lying to myself with thoughts like "ah, just one ciggie for old times sake" (That time I relapsed after 1 year without smoking).

Alcohol is dangerous when you try to stop smoking because it loosens your resolve and can awake your cravings. I had problems when going to parties, drinking 2-3 beers and seeing people smoke around me.. Danger!

This might sound esoteric, but I went to a hypnotherapist to 'reprogram' my subconscious towards being a nicotine-free person. Your mileage may vary, but I felt it did help me to go meet someone once/twice a week for the first month.

My favorite specialist on the subject of addiction Stanton Peele, http://www.peele.net
Interesting stuff about the emerging 'business' of addiction/recovery industry among other things, good books you might want to check.

Okay, my time is up. Don't worry, the cravings go away after a while, you just have to stay focused on your decision.
Hey I did it, so anybody can!  :)
 

CallOfDuty

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  Hey there signalman and Michael O'Leary, thanks alot for the heads up on those cigars I've been smoking.  I never really bothered to look into them too much.  I suppose it was because inside I knew how crappy they were for me but did'nt really want to know.  Friggin habit. 
  I'm going to try to enjoy my beers without next time :)
Cheers
Steve
 

sigtech

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I am Quiting This Friday, I am going to try the inhaler. I did try Zyban but I went nuts , wide mood swings punched a hole in my wall for no reason.

I hope the inhaler takes the edge off.

I still find returning to work to be the my biggest down fall, for awhile you watch people going out for a smoke brake and then you think well I will just go out and not smoke ya that lasts long.

wish me luck :skull:
 

Hot Lips

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In to my third week  ;D...no smokes...cold turkey...just stubborn

HL
 

Hunter

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The only negative thing I have to say about my military experience thus far is that I started smoking.  It was one day onmy SQ course that was so unbelievably cold I thought I was going to lose my mind.  It was the one day i've ever had in the army where I said to myself hey maybe I'm not cut out for this.  Initially it was just field smoking, but eventually it became a habit that carried over to the rest of my life.

While languishing miserably in civvie-land, I work as a computer nerd.  Last year I had a contract to build a website for Health Canada geard towards helping teens & young adults stop smoking.  The cruel irony of that project was that I had made a new years resolution to quit, and started the contract right afterwards.  It made quitting pretty tough to have smoking smoking smoking in my face all day, and never really achieved success. 

However, a couple of weeks ago I just lost the desire/craving to smoke.  The few that I had after that just made me feel sick, so I've been smoke-free for about a week now and so far I feel ok.  Probably the biggest motivator to quit was the look of disappointment on my daughter's face when she saw my cigarettes on the front seat of the car because I had forgotten to hide them.

The website can be found at http://www.quit4life.ca.  It has some resources that those wanting to quit might find useful - I hope it helps.
 

sigtech

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Well tryed to quit and failed. I probally picked a bad time ( tryed to stop while on vacation)

The Quit 4 life website looks really good I am going to try again very soon, I guess I just have to make sure I am ready ( god knows my wife isn't ready for my mood swings  ;D)
 

CallOfDuty

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  Hey sigtech.....good on ya for trying, and don't give up.  Funny thing I noticed that if you can hold off the smokes for a week and then two and so on and so on............you'll notice that when you see someone light up, you don't actually crave one, but instead, the smell will disgust you, and you actually feel bad for people that are smoking....because you  know how good it feels to not want one.
  I saw some kids today at the bus stop bumming smokes from everyone there and it was pittyful.  For gods sakes these kids looked like they were 11 or 12 years old!
  Keep on truckin man, its a horrible thing that you can conquer!
  Steve :cdn:
 
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