2017 resolutions: How to quit smoking
We’ve already discussed the LGBT community’s problem with smoking. Given that it’s almost the New Year, why not quit smoking for 2017?
Quit smoking: LGBT community’s problem with smoking
We’ve already pointed out that the LGBT community– especially lesbians– are prone to health-related issues like smoking and drinking due to stress from discrimination.
Likewise, an earlier report by the American Lung Association had pointed out that the LGBT community had a major problem with smoking.
“Since the smoking rate within the LGBT community is roughly double that of the general population, more members of the LGBT community are at greatly increased risk of these deadly diseases, as well as other tobacco-related health threats such as heart attacks and strokes,” said Mary H. Partridge, Chair of the ALA Board, in the report.
In that report, the ALA said: “The 2009 review found that for the most part lesbians had between 1.2 and 2.0 the odds of smoking compared to straight women.”
“Older women were found to smoke less than younger women, and researchers speculated that the younger women were more likely to socialize in bars, which might explain the difference,” it added.
A checklist: How to quit smoking
With that in mind, the ALA came up recently with a ‘Quit Smoking Checklist for Your Smokefree Resolution’ to help you quit.
1. Write down your reasons to quit smoking.
Find out the reason why you want to quite smoking and list it down. Is it for your health, or your partner’s health? Do you want to save money? Come up with a list and then keep it somewhere where you’ll always see it like on the refrigerator door or on your car dashboard.
2. Choose a quit date.
More importantly, set a quit date so you can prepare yourself both physically and mentally to quit. This way, you can hopefully easily adapt to your lifestyle change.
3. Identify your smoking triggers.
Before you quit smoking, identify what are your reasons for smoking, i.e. what triggers your need to smoke. Write these down and then make a plan on how to avoid these triggers or at least adapt your behavior so that you can through these moments.
4. Talk to a doctor.
According to the ALA, you can seek the help of a doctor or a healthcare provider so as to double the odds of successfully quitting smoking via counseling and medication.
5. Build a support team.
A 2015 survey noted that 80 percent of smokes who were trying to quit found support from their family, friends, partners, and coworkers.
6. Keep trying even if you have a slip-up.
Lastly, you can try to quit but if you slip-up and have a puff or two, don’t worry, this is normal and common in any attempt. Just keep trying: you probably haven’t found the right combination of quitting techniques yet.
In today’s technological age, you can also download a mobile app from ALA called Quitter’s Circle to help you quit smoking. The app offers resources like talking to a healthcare provider, and your support team can help keep track of your progress.
Remember: quitting ain’t easy but 50 million ex-smokers in the US have done it.