Smoking Cessation Options

Smoking cessation is associated with clear health benefits.  The main medications that have demonstrated to be efficacious for smoking cessation include nicotine replacement, varenicline and bupropion.  These treatments reduce the symptoms of nicotine withdrawal, making it easier to quit smoking.  The likelihood of successfully quitting is increased if counselling is provided alongside the medication.  

 

Over the counter nicotine replacement options include the nicotine patch, Nicorette gum and Nicorette lozenge.  Varenicline (brand name Chantix) is a prescription medication that works in the brain to reduce nicotine withdrawal symptoms and cravings for cigarettes.  Bupropion (brand name Zyban, Wellbutrin) is an anti-depressant that can be used to help with smoking cessation.  Bupropion is contraindicated in patients who have seizure disorder or a predisposition to seizures.  

 

Alternatively, there are natural ways to help curb the cravings for smoking.  Acupuncture,  along with hypnotherapy, may not be as well-known as nicotine patches or gum, but they can be helpful in offering relief, especially in the initial phase of smoking cessation to help with the irritability and cravings.  Unlike prescription medications, acupuncture and hypnotherapy have no side effects and may even lead to improvements in other areas like sleep.  Acupuncture promotes the production of endorphins, our feel-good hormones in the body, which help support people as they work through withdrawal symptoms.  In between acupuncture treatments, patients can also use ear seeds as a form of acupressure. This involves placing tiny balls on the pressure points on the ear to engage a relaxation response and help suppress cravings.

3 Essentials

  1. Avoid smoking and if smoking consider quitting (refer to smoking cessation options) 

  2. Distance yourself from secondhand smoke 

  3. Educate others on dangers of smoking

Additional Key Recommendations

  1. Avoid moving into homes that were smoked inside 

  2. If former smoker – consider supporting cardiovascular system and detoxification pathways 

References

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How To Protect Yourself

  • Avoid smoking and, if smoking, consider quitting (refer to smoking cessation options). 

  • Distance yourself from secondhand smoke. 

  • Educate others on dangers of smoking.

  • Avoid moving into homes that were smoked inside.

  • If former smoker – consider supporting cardiovascular system and detoxification pathways.

Work with a naturopathic doctor / naturopath to help you assess for environmental pollutants and to understand how they may be affecting your health. The information on this website is a guide for ways to protect you and your family from environmental pollutants.  It is not meant to replace advice from a healthcare professional.