Quitting smoking: 10 approaches to resist tobacco cravings

Tobacco cravings can dress in you down when you might be making an attempt to stop. Use these recommendations to reduce and resist cravings.

By Mayo Clinic Staff members

For most tobacco consumers, tobacco cravings or urges to smoke can be impressive. But you might be not at the mercy of these cravings.

When an urge to use tobacco strikes, bear in mind that even though it may perhaps be rigorous, it will most likely move within just five to 10 minutes irrespective of whether or not you smoke a cigarette or take a dip of chewing tobacco. Each and every time you resist a tobacco craving, you might be one phase nearer to halting tobacco use for superior.

Listed here are 10 approaches to help you resist the urge to smoke or use tobacco when a tobacco craving strikes.

1.Check out nicotine substitute therapy

Request your doctor about nicotine substitute therapy. The alternatives contain:

  • Prescription nicotine in a nasal spray or inhaler
  • Above-the-counter nicotine patches, gum and lozenges
  • Prescription non-nicotine halt-smoking prescription drugs these types of as bupropion (Zyban) and varenicline (Chantix)

Limited-performing nicotine substitute therapies — these types of as nicotine gum, lozenges, nasal sprays or inhalers — can help you prevail over rigorous cravings. These shorter-performing therapies are normally secure to use in combination with very long-performing nicotine patches or one of the non-nicotine prescription drugs.

Electronic cigarettes have experienced a ton of notice not long ago as an alternate to smoking common cigarettes. Nevertheless, far more scientific studies are essential to identify the usefulness of electronic cigarettes for smoking cessation and the very long-expression basic safety of these devices.

2.Stay away from triggers

Urges for tobacco are very likely to be strongest in the predicaments in which you smoked or chewed tobacco most often, these types of as at parties or bars, or even though emotion stressed or sipping espresso. Identify your cause predicaments and have a strategy in area to avoid them entirely or get by means of them devoid of using tobacco.

Don’t established your self up for a smoking relapse. If you usually smoked even though you talked on the phone, for occasion, retain a pen and paper nearby to occupy your self with doodling rather than smoking.


If you really feel like you might be likely to give in to your tobacco craving, explain to your self that you should very first wait around 10 far more minutes — and then do some thing to distract your self for that period of time of time. Check out likely to a public, smoke-free zone. These simple tricks may perhaps be more than enough to derail your tobacco craving.

four.Chew on it

Give your mouth some thing to do to fight a tobacco craving. Chew on sugarless gum or tricky candy, or munch on raw carrots, celery, nuts or sunflower seeds — some thing crunchy and satisfying.

five.Don’t have ‘just one’

You could be tempted to have just one cigarette to satisfy a tobacco craving. But do not fool your self into believing that you can halt there. More often than not, acquiring just one qualified prospects to another— and you may perhaps close up using tobacco once more.

6.Get actual physical

Actual physical action can help distract you from tobacco cravings and reduce their intensity. Even shorter burst of actual physical action — these types of as functioning up and down the stairs a couple instances — can make a tobacco craving go absent. Get out for a stroll or jog.

If you might be caught at residence or the office environment, try squats, deep knee bends, pushups, functioning in area, or walking up and down a established of stairs. If actual physical action does not curiosity you, try prayer, needlework, woodwork or journaling. Or do chores for distraction, these types of as vacuuming or submitting paperwork.

seven.Apply relaxation strategies

Using tobacco may perhaps have been your way to deal with worry. Resisting a tobacco craving can by itself be annoying. Just take the edge off worry by training relaxation strategies, these types of as deep-breathing workouts, muscle mass relaxation, yoga, visualization, massage or listening to calming songs.

8.Phone for reinforcements

Contact base with a household member, close friend or assistance team member for help in your hard work to resist a tobacco craving. Chat on the phone, go for a stroll collectively, share a couple laughs, or get collectively to commiserate about your cravings. A free telephone stop line — 800-Stop-NOW (800-784-8669) — presents assistance and counseling

nine.Go on the web for assistance

Join an on the web halt-smoking method. Or examine a quitter’s website and submit encouraging feelings for an individual else who could be battling with tobacco cravings. Find out from how other folks have handled their tobacco cravings.

10.Remind your self of the positive aspects

Produce down or say out loud the causes you want to halt smoking and resist tobacco cravings. These could contain:

  • Emotion much better
  • Getting healthier
  • Sparing your cherished kinds from secondhand smoke
  • Conserving funds

Remember, making an attempt some thing to defeat the urge is constantly much better than performing absolutely nothing. And each time you resist a tobacco craving, you might be one phase nearer to becoming totally tobacco-free.