Dealing with the First Few Weeks
The first few weeks after quitting smoking can be tough: You may be experiencing withdrawal symptoms, following unfamiliar routines, or managing stress and social situations without cigarettes.
There’s plenty to do during the first few weeks of your quit that can help you through the difficult points ahead. GetQuit® is here to serve as a resource to help you stick to your plan, navigate difficult situations, and live a smoke-free life. You know yourself and your needs best, so use the below as guidelines to help you on your quit journey.
Set yourself up for success: As you begin your quit journey, it’s best to make a quit plan. That plan can help keep you on the path to staying smoke-free. Stick to your plan and use your support team to help you get through these first few weeks.
- Check in with your healthcare provider. Let them know how you are feeling while quitting smoking.
- You may feel the need to hold something in your hands or put something in your mouth. Distract yourself by keeping objects nearby that you can fidget with (like a pencil) or put in your mouth (like a toothpick).
Recognize rough spots: There may be hardships or setbacks along your journey. Understanding the withdrawal symptoms that you may have and planning how to deal with urges and get through stressful situations may help you on your quit journey.
- Prepare for potential withdrawal symptoms. Depressed mood, irritability, and trouble sleeping are a few symptoms of withdrawal. Talk to a healthcare provider about what to expect and the best ways to deal with withdrawal symptoms.
- Avoid triggers. An important skill to learn while you’re quitting.
- Manage day-to-day stress. Prepare for any stressful situations that may arise while you’re early on in your quit, in a healthy, tobacco-free way.
- Understand that slip-ups can happen. One or 2 cigarettes isn’t a reason to give up—it’s a reminder to pay attention to your quit plan and see if there is anything you could adjust to help you stay smoke-free. If you smoke multiple cigarettes for days in a row, consider setting a new quit date and trying again.
Keep up the quit: The first few weeks after quitting smoking may be the hardest, and it’s easy to get discouraged. But know that these weeks will pass, and the experience of getting through it may even leave you feeling more prepared and motivated to stick to your quit going forward.
- Believe in yourself—a simple “I got this” can be your mantra as you focus on overcoming any urges and staying committed to your quit. You can do it!
- Don’t give up—no matter what happens. Give yourself a pep talk or hang out with a supporter to help get your mindset back on track.
- Check in (and celebrate!) at milestones. Whether you’re 1 week, 1 month, or 1 year smoke-free, celebrate! You’re accomplishing a great feat. Check in with yourself and your supporters to make sure you’re aligned on your goals and how you can achieve them.
Though quitting smoking may be tough right now, know that you’re on the right track—keep it up!