Vital Signs Volume 11, Issue 3 | Page 7

STICK TO THE PLAN Don’t forget that smoking cessation is a process that won’t happen overnight. That’s why part three of the Commit to Quit campaign is about sticking to the plan. Cessation gets easier with time but you have to be flexible and make lifestyle changes as necessary. Stay connected to your physician. Update them with progress you make and challenges you encounter. Here are some tips for maintaining one of the greatest decisions you’ll ever make. ȧȧ Surround yourself with people who can help hold you accountable. ȧȧ Stay busy and active to keep your mind occupied. ȧȧ Identify a few go-to coping mechanisms to help you get through strong urges to smoke, like going for a walk or calling a friend. ȧȧ Avoid places where you know people will be smoking. ȧȧ Certain foods like sugar-free gum, fresh vegetables and fruit can help control your cravings. ȧȧ Cut down on alcohol and caffeine, which can trigger urges to smoke. ȧȧ Continue setting goals, and reward yourself when you reach them. ȧȧ Adopt a lifestyle that incorporates