Medical questions & health advice by board certified doctors
"What is the best way to quit smoking?"
I've heard a lot of different ways of quitting smoking but I don't know which one is best. Is there a better way to quit smoking than cold turkey? Should I take medication?
First of all, congratulations on starting to think about quitting smoking! As you probably know, smoking is very bad for your health, raising the risk for both heart and lung disease later in life. Quitting smoking is one of the most important steps you can take towards guaranteeing yourself a more healthy future. If you have not already done so, I would strongly recommend that you make an appointment with your primary care doctor to discuss smoking cessation. These days, there are multiple very effective treatments for helping you to quit smoking successfully, and your doctor will be able to discuss all of these various options with you. Perhaps the most common and well-known option for helping to quit smoking is nicotine replacement therapy. There are several forms of nicotine replacement, including nicotine gum and nicotine patches, and these have been shown to cut down on cravings and improving quitting success. Nicotine replacement is even more effective if it is combined with a daily medication to further reduce cravings, and there a few of these medications that are available. They each have various side effects, so your doctor will discuss each with you and help you decide which one might be right for you.
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