Smoking: Our GPs offer some top tips

Top tips for quitting smoking

You're not alone when it comes to quit smoking

By now, we’re all aware of the significant dangers associated with smoking. In spite of this, many people struggle to quit for good. Making that step change to convince yourself that you’re no longer a smoker can be difficult, and we hope our top tips may be able to help you ‘beat the butt’ for good.

1. Know your triggers; When do you smoke?

People often say they smoke to relax, to relieve stress, to help them think, or that they smoke socially when out with friends. Prepare yourself to encounter these situations, and plan for how you will react to them. Being mindful of what you need to do can go a long way towards success.

2. Think positively; What do you gain from not smoking?

Start thinking about what you have to gain from quitting smoking. Not only will you feel better and reduce your risk of longer-term health problem, you’ll save a lot of money!

There is bound to be an empty space when you quit smoking, but that also gives the opportunity to fill the gap with something else. Taking up a new hobby, especially exercise, may keep your mind busy whilst also helping to improve your mood and curb any potential weight gain from quitting smoking.

3. Talk to people; How can other people help you? 

Professional advice or simply reaching out to your loved ones can really help you to stick with it. Ask your friends to stop offering you cigarettes, and to be patient with you when you avoid high risk social functions for a short while.

Talk to people about quitting smoking


If you are struggling, your doctor or a counsellor can talk you through strategies to help you from slipping. These can include advice, planning a quit date and advice on drug therapy to quit smoking.

4. Drug therapy can help; Ask your doctor?

There are many different options for nicotine replacement therapy (patches, gum, lozenge’s, mouth spray, nasal spray, inhalation cartridges, sublingual tablets) as well as prescription medication. You may have a preference, so think about this and if you want advice on the best option for you, your doctor can help with this.

Also bear in mind that certain therapies may not be available to all people (for example if you are pregnant or breast-feeding) so make sure to do your research first.

5. Stay motivated!

Keep yourself regularly updated with information which will help you maintain abstinence. The internet is a good place to start with this. Remember, it doesn’t matter if you slip up. You can start again and it doesn’t mean you have failed.

Stay strong and stay quit!

Stay strong when you quit smoking