9th January 2024
By Scott Crosby - Associate Director, Centre of Excellence in Tobacco Control
This year let’s ditch the resolutions that feel like ‘giving up’ and embrace a swap that leads to gaining something truly valuable: better mental health. We’re talking about swapping those cigarettes for safer nicotine options, like patches, gum, or even vapes.
The overwhelming evidence shows that once you’re free from harmful tobacco, your mental health can blossom. Stopping smoking doesn’t worsen mental health; it actually helps! Studies reveal that quitting’s positive impact on anxiety and depression can be as significant as taking antidepressants. Anxiety, depression, and stress levels take a nosedive, replaced by positive feelings, reduced stress, and a newfound sense of well-being.
But why is this swap so powerful for mental health?
Smoking might feel like a temporary stress reliever, but it’s actually a vicious cycle. Nicotine messes with your brain, leaving you craving more and more, leading to those anxious, irritable feelings when you don’t have a cigarette. This cycle keeps you trapped, while quitting sets you free.
- Reduced anxiety: Feeling calmer and more in control, not at the mercy of cravings.
- Brighter mood: Saying goodbye to those dark clouds and embracing sunshine and positivity.
- Less stress: Taking a deep breath and feeling the weight lift from your shoulders.
- Improved self-worth: Knowing you’ve conquered a challenge and taken control of your well-being.
This isn’t just wishful thinking:
Thousands of ex-smokers have experienced these benefits first hand. They’ll tell you it’s not about deprivation, it’s about reclaiming your power and unlocking your full potential. Check out Paul’s Story here.
You can also watch Sam’s story on the benefits of stopping smoking here.
Ready to make the swap?
We’re here to support you every step of the way. Our local stop smoking services are here to help by offering a range of resources and support, including:
- Nicotine replacement therapy: Patches, gum, or vapes to help you gradually reduce your nicotine intake.
- One-on=one support: Get personalized guidance.
- Digital tools and apps: Stay motivated and track your progress with helpful resources.
This New Year let’s rewrite the narrative. Make 2024 the year you swap smoking for a brighter mind, a healthier body, and a happier you. Embrace the freedom, the joy, and the mental clarity that awaits. Take that first step and breathe in a future brimming with possibilities.
Remember, it’s not just about quitting cigarettes; it’s about quitting the limitations they’ve imposed on your life.