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Old 04-03-2009, 10:56 AM   #1 (permalink)
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Too Soon to quit smoking? Earlier Sobriety

I need to quit smoking but am worried that it might be piling on too much at once. I am about 4 months sober.

When I have I quit smoking in the past I was really mentally prepared but right now it is just coming down to I don't feel like paying $8 for a pack of cigarettes. The money isn't going to be the end of me but I have better ways to spend it.

On the flipside, because I am not prepared and I am not in the right mindset I don't want to put too much pressure on myself. I know I can quit but it will be more of a suffering it out than a telling myself I quit "get over it" mentality. I read Allan Carr's (sp) book on quitting and it didn't help or get me motivated.

So quitting smoking early in sobriety...

Any suggestions? Studies that show whether or not this may be a good or bad idea?
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Old 04-03-2009, 11:05 AM   #2 (permalink)

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I have read that there are studies about it and that people have quit drinking/drugging and smoking at the same time and have successful, but can't recall where I saw this at. So hopefully someone will be along with the right links.

But, me personally, I'm taking it one addiction at a time. I'm waiting until I'm more comfortable with sobriety away from my drinking before I try to give up smoking. Drinking was my big problem, so gave that up first and plan to give up smoking when I'm more comfortable and more than a couple months away from booze.

Guess it depends on the individual though. I'm sure you'll know when the time is right for you to give it up. Take it a day at a time and when the time comes it'll be easier and you'll be ready for it.

"When a man lies he murders
Some part of the world
These are the pale deaths
Which men miscall their lives
All this I cannot bear
To witness any longer
Cannot the kingdom of salvation
Take me home?"

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Old 04-03-2009, 11:16 AM   #3 (permalink)

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I've done both at once pretty much - am 60 days into sobriety and 25 days not smoking. It wasn't really 'planned' but I knew I had to do them both so thought I would give it a go! What I have done though, is, although I'm not using AA or any group for my drinking, i am using my doctor's surgey for help with the cigarettes. It's a NHS thing over here, you go once a fortnight to chat about how it's going and get nictine replacement. So far I have been decreasing my patches and lesseining my use of the inhalator. This works well for me, but I can't speak for anyone else of course!!

I also have to say that I am finding quitting smoking twenty times more difficult!

Good luck. :ghug3

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Old 04-03-2009, 11:29 AM   #4 (permalink)
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When I left medical detox, the doctor there told me to wait until I had at least six months of sobriety before attempting to stop smoking. I'm sure there are many different opinions on this, but I'm just telling your what I was told.

I'm three days away from having 10 months sober and I still haven't tried to quit smoking.
"So often times it happens that we live our lives in chains and we never even know we have the key."
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"We call them dumb animals, and so they are, for they cannot tell us how they feel, but they do not suffer less because they have no words."
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Old 04-03-2009, 12:25 PM   #5 (permalink)

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I would quit everytime I went to Jail. Then as soon as I got out first thing I did was light up a cigarette. It is the mental part that gets me about nicotine. Physical withdrawals only last 72 hours.
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Old 04-03-2009, 01:09 PM   #6 (permalink)
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Originally Posted by CoF1984 View Post
I have read that there are studies about it and that people have quit drinking/drugging and smoking at the same time.

yes me. 7 years quit everything drugs, smoking and drinking. quit for a good time to. It's eaiser to do it all at once than to do it one by one IMO.
I did eventually start smoking again and drinking again but now 1 year smoke free and 62 days sober!!!
If you still have some plans left, they suck and you will use them!

Formerly H.W.F
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Old 04-03-2009, 01:22 PM   #7 (permalink)

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I quit smoking a year ago after I watched this documentary on lung cancer, just shows that they do work, but not for every addict
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Old 04-03-2009, 01:47 PM   #8 (permalink)
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Well, I don't have any studies or anything to back up either way, but I am sure it can be done. It is up to the individual, and I smoke cigarettes too. I wanted to quit because of the high prices and a couple times, my mind played tricks on me and it felt like I was getting a crack high. Which ya know, is impossible from cigarettes. LOL. Anyway, I am only 60 days clean (technically- today is the day- though you know they celebrate the same day each month), and I tried quitting the cigs last week. I got a bit grumpy, which I felt I could handle, but then the nightmares about smoking crack came and I was like, ya know, it might be too soon for me..... So that was for me. I'd say to give it a shot. Try a couple days or a week and see how it works for you. Things start seeming too far off, go back and don't feel bad about it. For some of us, we just need to take it easy and do one thing at a time. Worry about the addiction that would kill you more quickly than the one that won't.
"You can't quit until you try, you can't live until you die, you can't learn to tell the truth until you learn to lie."
"Knowledge is knowing a tomato is a fruit. Wisdom is not putting a tomato in a fruit salad."
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Old 04-03-2009, 04:34 PM   #9 (permalink)
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I've seen lots of studies that say nicotine is a good habit to kick in early sobriety. I think that what I have read is the most ideal is to kick the two things almost simultaneously but four months in ain't too shabby either. I totally get piling too many things on at once. I mean these are sort of lame parallels but I often have the idea that I am watching too much tv and need to quit that or the computer, etc. But then I am like whoa, one thing at a time.

However, I do think that cigarettes are different because I actually do believe they can be detrimental to your recovery. Nicotine amps up your anxiety. Cigarettes really take a toll on your body. I was a huge smoker and it is a bitch to quit, in a way it is a harder beast than alcohol but in a way it is also much much easier since there is not so much emotional crap to deal with. But you feel so much better pretty quickly after you stop and you don't have drinking to make you slip. I couldn't quit for reasons like lung disease and far off reasons, I had to quit for today reasons, like I will feel better, I won't huff when I walk up the stairs, my skin will look better, I will be less tired, etc. And all those things are so true. And the anxiety thing. Your anxiety/stress level will greatly subside and I think that is why it is ultimately a good idea for people in recovery.

I just had to give up caffeine (well not give up completely but I was living off it so now I am moderating) because of digestive issues. I drank so much coffee and diet soda, it was freakish. And it was actually easy to mostly give up, but caffeine obviously is not nicotine which I think is the most physically addictive substance out there. Immediately I felt so much better. I had so much more energy. I slept less. I woke up more refreshed. All these things I hadn't anticipated. I was just doing this because I had to get more water in my system and stay less dehydrated but it gave me a much needed boost to how I was feeling.

This is my extremely long-winded vote for yes, quit smoking.
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Old 04-03-2009, 04:36 PM   #10 (permalink)
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The Sober Alcoholic's Stop Smoking Support Page
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Old 04-03-2009, 09:15 PM   #11 (permalink)
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Thanks Everyone. I just need to start working myself into the right mind-set. Out of the last 10 years I have smoked for 2 of them and after the initial three days I am fine but I do have to be in the right frame of mind to quit. I am just a little afraid of throwing too many irons into the fire at once.
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Old 04-03-2009, 09:28 PM   #12 (permalink)
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Hi Sara,
I just quit a couple of weeks ago at 16 months alcohol sobriety. I had been putting off quitting time and time again and it seemed like I always had an excuse. My last one was my stress level which realistically never seems to go down, so I keep smoking. Finally one day the cigarettes were making me ill and finally I just did it cold turkey, no meds. The first three days were tough but truthfully not even that tough. Now I just get memory reminders that I used to smoke.

What motivated me to do it was reading through the posts here at SR in the Nicotine/Smoking forum. We have a gang there that quit and post daily about how we are doing. The support is great!! It was all I needed to be able to finally stop. Please come join us, I promise you won't regret it. I sure don't, I no longer am a smoker!!
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