Resource Guide

Stop Smoking Guide

This resource guide provides practical and useful advice to help you quit smoking. To access the complete version of the Stop Smoking Guide, click here to sign up for the Project.

See sample chapters of the Stop Smoking Guide below.


What do I Gain If I Quit Smoking?


Many medical studies show that upon quitting smoking the body begins to improve almost immediately even if you have smoked for many years. Upon quitting smoking:

  • Your body will eliminate the poisons of the cigarette reducing the risk of cancer and heart attacks.

  • Your bronchial tubes and lungs will clean themselves making breathing easier.

  • Your family will not get sick because of cigarettes.

  • Your family will look at you with more respect.

  • Children will not learn the bad habit of smoking cigarettes from you.

  • You will have less nasal congestion and fewer colds.

  • You will tire less since your body will receive more oxygen.

  • You will raise your productivity and your level of energy.

  • You will no longer waste money buying cigarettes. If you smoke a pack each day, when you quit smoking you could save more than $1,000 per year.

  • You will save money spent on medicines and doctors because of cigarettes.

  • The cost of your automobile and home insurance will be lower.

  • You will have more years of healthy life to share with your loved ones.


How Do Cigarettes Affect My Loved Ones?


Smoking not only spoils your health, it also threatens the health and well being of the persons you love. Cigarette smoke seriously jeopardizes those who do not smoke:

The unborn child:

  • When women smoke during pregnancy they increase the risk that their babies will be born with physical defects.

  • The newborn of fathers or mothers who smoked during pregnancy weighs less than they should. Babies born with low weight become ill more frequently.

  • Babies, who are exposed to cigarette smoke before birth, even if the mother does not smoke, have problems with the development of speech and of intelligence.


  • Because of breathing the cigarette smoke of adults who smoke, babies and children get more pneumonia, colds, ear infections and respiratory diseases.

  • Children learn to smoke watching adults. Many of the children of persons who smoke become smokers when they grow up.

  • If you die young, you will leave your children and grandchildren without your love, and without your moral and economic support.

Other persons:

  • Persons who live or work with a smoker breathe cigarette smoke and have more risks of suffering from lung cancer, heart attacks and other diseases.

  • Smoking can lead to many arguments within the family because of problems with the smoke and because the relatives are concerned about the health of the smoker.

  • By becoming sick due to cigarettes, the smoker will not be able to fulfill family obligations.


How Can I Quit Smoking?


If you wish to quit smoking, there are several things you can do. Read the list that follows and choose those things that you would like to put into practice.

Reduce your consumption of cigarettes:

  • Don't buy cigarettes
    By not having cigarettes on hand, you will smoke less.
  • Smoke fewer cigarettes than the day before

    Each day smoke two or three cigarettes less than the day before. For example, if generally you smoke 20 cigarettes each day, tomorrow try to smoke 17, the day after tomorrow 15, and so on.
  • Set a Date to Quit Smoking "Cold Turkey"

    Decide to set a date to quit smoking cigarettes completely.


Learn to resist the desire to smoke:

  • When you feel the desire to smoke, wait five minutes before lighting a cigarette

    As time goes by, the desire to smoke lessens gradually.
  • Keep your mouth and your hands busy

    For example, put something in your mouth like a toothpick or breath mints or carrots and keep your hands busy with a pencil or a coin.
  • Do not smoke in your favorite places

    Stop smoking in your favorite places and do not smoke in the same place for more than 4 or 5 days.
  • Do not smoke in your home

    Decide not to smoke inside of your home. If you feel a desire to smoke while you are at home, go out to the street or to the garden before lighting the cigarette.
  • Do not go to places where there are many smokers

    Keep away from places where there are many smokers such as bars, dances or party halls.
  • Talk to persons who have quit smoking

    Ask your friends who have quit smoking how they did it and ask them to help you to quit smoking.


Consider the effects of cigarettes:

  • Be aware of the bad physical effects produced by the cigarette

    Every time that you smoke a cigarette, be aware of the burning in your throat and eyes and the irritation of your lungs. Smoking is not as pleasurable as you might think.
  • Collect the cigarette butts in a bottle

    In a bottle place all the cigarettes and cigarette butts you can find. Add water and cover it. Every time you have a desire to smoke, look at the bottle and open it so you can smell the bad odor of the cigarette poisons.
  • Remember how the cigarette affects your health

    If you have desires to smoke, remember the adverse effects that the cigarette has on your health.


Obtain the help of friends and your doctor:

  • Tell your friends and relatives that you want to quit smoking

    Tell your friends and relatives that you are going to quit smoking so that they will not offer you cigarettes nor smoke in your presence. 。
  • Tell your doctor that you want to quit smoking

    Your doctor or nurse can give you support and suggestions on how to quit smoking.
  • Ask your doctor for a treatment of the addiction

    If your addiction to nicotine is strong, your doctor may suggest using the nicotine patch or nicotine gum to help you quit smoking. Your doctor can also offer other medical treatments for nicotine addiction or refer you to other professionals that can help you.
  • Contact a group that can help you quit smoking

    If you prefer receiving expert help on methods for quitting smoking, call a group or association dedicated to this work. For example, call the American Lung Association (1-800-LUNG-USA), the American Cancer Society (1-800-ACS-2345), The American Heart Association (1-800-AHA-USA1), the Department of Health in your city, or the Cancer Information Service (1-800-422-6237).