Help For Smokers Who Want To Quit - KTRE.com | Lufkin and Nacogdoches, Texas

08/09/05 - Lufkin

Help For Smokers Who Want To Quit

by Stuart Burson

The recent death of Peter Jennings has put the issue of lung cancer back in the spotlight. One of the major contributors to the disease is smoking.

If you ask anyone who smokes, chances are good they'll tell you they want to quit. But wanting to quit and actually doing it are two different things.

Today, everything from patches to pills are available to help. But which method is right for you?

"One of the first things that's important to do is assess the cigarette smoking habit. People have different habits, they smoke different amounts. Smoking is sometimes associated with anxiety. Sometimes, it's just out of habit or boredom," says Dr. Debra Burton, a licensed professional counselor.

Dr. Burton is also a strong believer in hypnotherapy as a way to help smokers quit. But, don't worry, it's not what you may think.

"There's enough research that substantiates its effectiveness. It's not something that you actually do to someone, it's something that they do for themselves. We just guide that process along. Just, when someone is in a relaxed state, their mind is more open to suggestion," says Dr. Burton.

Nicotine patches and gums are among the most common anti-smoking products on the market. One pharmacist we spoke with sees a lot of success with the patch.

"I think the patch is more successful because they remember to wear it, to keep it on, and it gives them nicotine all through the day. We get nicotine from the cigarettes -- and this [patch] is a source of nicotine -- which, it's really hard to come off of a drug like nicotine," says Pharmacist Ken Reeves with Timberland Discount Pharmacy.

Lately, many smokers are quitting with the help of a drug called Wellbutrin. Originally prescribed as an antidepressant, it was soon discovered to help curb the desire to smoke.

Remember, no matter what method you decide to use, there is help out there for those wanting to quit the smoking habit.

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