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Quitting Tips

Tips and Helpful Information about Quitting Smoking

1. Why is quitting so hard?

Many ex-smokers say quitting was the hardest thing they ever did. Do you feel hooked? You are probably addicted to nicotine. Nicotine is in all tobacco products. Nicotine makes you feel calm and satisfied. At the same time, you feel more alert and focused. The more you smoke, the more nicotine you need to feel good. Soon, you don’t feel “normal” without nicotine. It takes time to break free from nicotine addiction. It may take more than one try to quit for good. So don’t give up too soon. You will feel good again.

2. Announce a quit date

Announce a quit date to help you end any bad habit, “You want to have at least one person whom you know, if you call that that person, will tell you, ‘Don’t smoke,'” says Christopher Kahler, professor of community health at Brown University. “Particularly if you are going out to parties and family events, if you have somebody who knows what your intention is, that’s a very important thing.”

3. Did you know…?

… 20 minutes after stopping smoking your heart rate becomes normal.

… 8 hours after you quit smoking, your blood oxygen level returns to normal.

… 12 hours after stopping smoking, the carbon monoxide level in your blood drops to normal.

… 2 weeks to 3 months after stopping smoking, your coughing and shortness of breath decrease.

… 3 months after you quit smoking, your lung function improves by 30%.

… 1 year after stopping smoking, your added risk of coronary heart disease is half that of a smoker’s.

… 5 to 15 years after stopping smoking, your risk of having a stroke is reduced to that of someone who doesn’t smoke.

… 10 years after stopping smoking, your chance of death by lung cancer is about half that of a smoker’s.  Your risk of cancers of the mouth, throat, esophagus, bladder, kidney and pancreas decrease.

4. Information about The Rhode Island Tobacco Control Program

The Rhode Island Tobacco Control Program works to create changes in social, political, and physical environments to make it more difficult to start and continue using tobacco, make it easier to quit, and make choosing health the easier choice. For more information, visit

5. Information about Smoking in Rhode Island
  • % of adults that smoke: 15.0% (national rank 47th)
  • Price/pack on average: 7.63dollars (pack price national rank-2nd)
  • Bans on smoking in RI: smoking is banned in the workplace,  at bars and at restaurants.
6. Smoking goes with other things

Smoking goes with other things. You may light up when you feel a certain way or do certain things. For example:

  • Drinking coffee, wine, or beer
  • Talking on the phone
  • Driving
  • Being with other smokers

ou may even feel uncomfortable not smoking at times or in places where you usually have a cigarette. These times and places are called “triggers.” That’s because they trigger, or turn on, cigarette cravings. Breaking these habits is the hardest part of quitting for some smokers.

7.  Before you quit, take these five important steps:

S = Set a quit date.
T = Tell family, friends, and co-workers that you plan to quit.
A = Anticipate and plan for the challenges you’ll face while quitting.
R = Remove cigarettes and other tobacco products from your home, car, and work.
T = Talk to your doctor about getting help to quit.

8. Did You Know?

  • Your body gets more than nicotine when you smoke.
  • There are more than 4,000 chemicals in cigarette smoke. Some of them are also in wood varnish, the insect poison DDT, arsenic, nail polish remover, and rat poison.
  • The soot, tar, gases, and other poisons in cigarettes harm your body over time. They damage your heart and lungs. They also make it harder for you to taste, smell, and fight infections.