Smoking cigarettes is extremely addictive and hazardous to the health of not only the smoker, but to the people around them as well. The addictiveness of cigarettes can be compared to being addicted to heroin, so getting someone to quit is not going to be an easy task.
There are several ways to try to get someone to quit smoking, all will take patience and understanding and most will likely take more than one try to be successful. This article will discuss several methods of trying to convince someone to quit smoking, including behavioral therapy, intervention, the response to the intervention, a quit plan and social factors such as public smoking restrictions.
Cognitive Behavior Therapy
Cognitive Behavior Therapy, or CBT, is a psychotherapy technique that focuses on negative thoughts and emotions towards smoking and developing new ways to think about them. For example; when someone says “I need a cigarette,” the habit can be altered to “I need some gum.”
Some of the more negative thoughts that people have when trying to quit are related to the anxiety of relapse. CBT teaches the smoker to think of a relapse as a good first try on the way to the next attempt. This strategy basically takes the negative feelings about failing (relapse) and turns them into a positive.
There are other techniques that use CBT in order to help change the ways that smoking is perceived in the mind.
Some of these are:
- Education – Being educated on the dangers of smoking and all of the methods available to quit can help the person realize their different options and how necessary quitting is.
- Using a Diary – This action will allow people to remember when, where, or with whom they felt like having a cigarette and then avoid those situations in the future. The same can be done when they felt good and did not want a cigarette so those situations can be repeated.
- Environments – Realizing the certain places and times when a cigarette is wanted can be helpful in avoiding them in the future.
- Social Situations – By having friends and family that smoke, it makes it harder to quit. Being surrounded by nonsmokers in nonsmoking places greatly reduces the chances of a relapse
- Exercise – Exercising can take the focus off of quitting smoking. Changing exercise into a positive will keep the mind busy and also helps cleanse the body of nicotine
Keeping a positive attitude on the journey of quitting smoking is an integral part to leading a smokefree life permanently.
Intervention involves “one on one” interview type sessions with a doctor or nurse. They will discuss the reasons for the person smoking, benefits of quitting, effects on friends and family, and other factors related to smoking cessation. This method is similar to CBT in that the smoker has the same options but can consult with a qualified medical professional. The doctor will make a series of decisions for the smoker based on how they are responding to group therapy, individual therapy, or starting Nicotine Replacement Therapies (NRT’s). A doctor can also prescribe medication if they see fit. The doctor will judge the best method to be used for each individual smoker based on their unique needs.
Response to Intervention
The response to intervention will depend on each individual. What happens after the intervention is up to the smoker. The individual must choose to follow the doctor’s instructions or risk relapse.
The doctor will take every step to ensure that the individual will remain smoke-free. Some of these steps include:
- Does the smoker want to quit? – The answer must be yes in order to proceed with a medical doctor’s consultation
- Start with an intensive support program – Group or individual counselling sessions
- Does the smoker want pharmacological assistance? – If no, continue with counseling. If yes, they can start on NRT treatments such as patches or gums
- Are they remaining smoke-free? – If yes, periodical reviews with the doctor. If no, offer pharmaceutical options
Creating a Quit Plan
For smokers who know they want to quit but are scared or just not sure how, creating a quit plan is a very useful tool to assist in quitting smoking. Some of the items that should be on a quit smoking plan include:
- Quit Date – Setting a quit date is the first step in a quitting plan.
- Cognitive Behaviour Therapy – Using CBT to change everyday habits of the smoker is an essential start to quitting smoking.
- Support – Making a list or plan of people who will be supportive is also a great way to keep the individual focused on the end goal of being smoke-free for life.
- Professional Help – Keeping an open mind about using a professional, such as Clinical Hypnosis and Hypnotherapy, should also be in the plan.
- NRT – Using Nicotine Replacement Therapy is a very common way to quit smoking. NRT’s such as patches and gums gradually reduce the nicotine level ingested into the body with the hope that eventually none will be needed.
Public Smoking Restrictions
With all of the restrictions now in place on smoking in public places (bars, restaurants, casinos, and most public areas) there is no better time to convince people to quit smoking. Not being able to join in certain social situations or having to go outside several meters away from any door for a smoke break and miss out on conversation, is a motivation to smoking that can be used to get someone to quit.
The same goes for the workplace. Productivity goes down if the employees have to go down 16 floors and stand outside for 10 minutes every 2 hours. Any or all of these factors can be used as an influence to help someone decide to quit smoking.
Clinical Hypnosis and Hypnotherapy
Getting someone to quit smoking can be an arduous task. Someone who has smoked cigarettes for some time will most likely be highly addicted to them and will have a hard time letting go of this dangerous habit. Using the techniques in this article, there will be a higher chance of getting someone to quit smoking.
If that person does decide to quit smoking, Clinical Hypnosis and Hypnotherapy is one of the most effective ways to do it.
Joseph R. Giove is a licensed Clinical Hypnotist with over 30 years of experience in his field. He uses no chemicals or carcinogens to help quit smoking, only the power of the mind. By gently altering brain patterns, the individual will no longer crave cigarettes and may even come to despise them. After convincing someone to quit smoking, advise them that Clinical Hypnosis and Hypnotherapy is one of the safest and best options for a smoke-free life.