We often get asked about acupuncture to quit smoking and how it can help. Unfortunately, quitting smoking is difficult and acupuncture is not a miracle cure. However, it can help with withdrawal symptoms such as cravings, stress, and anxiety, making the whole process that bit little easier.
Here’s all you need to know about acupuncture to quit smoking and how it could help you.
Why Quit Smoking?
Most people know that smoking is bad for them, but unfortunately once you start, it can be very difficult to stop. As if you needed any extra encouragement, here are some of the major benefits of kicking the habit:
- Increased lung capacity
- Easier breathing
- Fewer coughing fits
- Lower chance of developing lung cancer, emphysema, and chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD)
- Increased energy
- Improved immunity
- Improved fertility
- Better sex (improved circulation to the genitals)
- Improved sense of smell and taste
- Younger looking skin
- Better dental health
- More spare money
Despite all of these benefits, smoking is highly addictive and it can be incredibly hard to give up. People who quit smoking often experience withdrawal symptoms such as cravings, irritability, anxiety, and weight gain. This is where acupuncture may be able to help!
Acupuncture to Quit Smoking
Although you will still need some willpower to quit smoking, acupuncture can help you to deal with some of the withdrawal symptoms and reduce the chances of you slipping back into bad habits.
Acupuncture to quit smoking can be performed anywhere on the body depending on your individual withdrawal symptoms. However, some of the most common points are in the ears. In acupuncture theory, the ear is seen as a representation of the whole body. It has points corresponding to all of the internal organs including the Lungs, Liver, and Kidneys. The ear also has points which can help to restore emotional balance and calm the central nervous system, and these are all useful points for quitting smoking.
Your acupuncturist may provide you with tiny needles or seeds which are stuck onto your ears with thin medical tape. You can wear these for several days at a time and they may help to control your cravings when they arise.
However, everybody is different and everyone has their individual needs when quitting smoking. Talk to your provider about the best treatment plan for you.
Hints and Tips to Complement Acupuncture to Quit Smoking
Although acupuncture can make the process of quitting smoking easier, you will still need to put in some work and have a degree of willpower of your own. Here are some helpful hints and tips to increase your chances of success:
Make a Plan
Decide a date to quit and stick to it. Make sure that before your quit date, you remove all items such as lighters and ash trays from your home so that you won’t be tempted. If you have a partner, friend or relative who also smokes, try quitting together to reduce the chances of slipping up.
Identify Your Triggers
Do you always smoke after a meal or when you drink alcohol? Is smoking something you do when you are bored or under stress? Knowing your triggers can help you to identify and avoid situations that might be difficult for you.
Tell Your Friends
Telling your friends, family, and colleagues that you are quitting is a good idea for two reasons. Firstly, they can offer you support and encouragement. Secondly, you can prepare them for the fact that you may be a little more irritable than normal. This can help you to avoid conflict and reduce your levels of stress.
Distract Yourself from Cravings
Cravings usually last around five minutes, so find a way to distract yourself when they hit. You could try doing some calming breathing exercises or stretching, or stand up and take a walk around the room.
Put aside the money that you save by not smoking and use it to treat yourself to something that you would not normally do. Whether you decide to splash out on some new clothes or indulge in a massage, rewarding yourself is a great way to reinforce your positive habits and keep yourself motivated while you quit.