One way you can improve your heart health is to stop smoking. In fact, if you have tried to quit smoking before only to find that you take up the habit again, you may want to ask yourself if you lined up enough support for those previous attempts. In "Quitting Smoking: Getting Support," CardioSmart.org offers suggestions for how you can make your effort to quit into a family or team affair:
- Let your doctor know that you plan to quit smoking so you can get recommendations and discuss the possibility of using medication or nicotine replacement.
- "Tell people that you're trying to quit. Don't hide your attempt because you're afraid people will see you fail." If you don't let people know, you may miss out on valuable advice and well as support.
- Accept the support that you get from family and friends at whatever level they are prepared to give. Some will have kind words; others may want to scold you if they see you light up. If you can find someone is willing, ask if you can call or text them whenever you feel the urge to smoke.
- Set goals and milestones. Make plans to celebrate when you reach these pivotal moments. This will spur you to keep going.
- Identify the times when you are most likely to want to smoke, specifically those times when you feel the most stress. You may not be able to avoid all of your stressors but think of ways that you can alleviate some of your stress.