What Psychology Has to Say About It

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If you are trying to quit smoking, there are a few things that Dr. John M. Grohol, PSYD, has to say that may shock you.

So you're trying to quick. Have you picked up a book about it? Although they are a good first step (after all, you are admitting you have a problem and are seeking help to quit your habit)  the truth is not always detailed properly, and is sometimes even hidden in these books. Yes, these books are often the purveyors of white lies.

Even though psychologists agree that certain mental health illnesses don’t require treatment –- such as behavioral disorders (like phobias), some do need assistance in order to be properly eliminated. Smoking isn’t one of them.

First, Dr. Grohol says that if you know that your smoking is behavior-related, (meaning you smoke along with something else, like drinking a beer or right after eating), you cannot quit smoking using something like patches or nicotine gum. The association you built up between the two is stronger than what any form of alternative treatment can do for you.

And unfortunately, science has never really delved much into the matter. Why? Because science doesn’t work that way. What the scientific community (and funders) want, is to prove that a certain medication or assistance device works. But most people who quit didn’t do it using a patch or gum. They do it on their own, often cold turkey.

In fact, it's believed that this cold turkey group composes around 75% of the smokers who manage to quit. Shocking? Not really. They just knew what to do and and they did it.

Monitoring themselves for depressive feelings and/or urges toward the habit has worked better for many smokers, than using books or other aids.



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