Expert: Quitting Smoking for New Year’s a Physical, Mental Challenge
December 20, 2011
Lee Cohen, a smoking cessation expert and clinical psychologist, can explain what
smokers should think about before quitting as well as what makes a successful quitting
At any one time, two thirds of all smokers are considering quitting. A quarter will
make a serious attempt each year – many as a New Year’s resolution. But only 7 percent
will be successful in the first try. Lee Cohen, a smoking cessation expert and clinical
psychologist, can explain what smokers should think about before quitting as well
as what makes a successful quitting attempt.
Lee Cohen, chairman of the Department of Psychology, (806) 742-3711 ext. 224, firstname.lastname@example.org.
- Smoking is the No. 1 cause of preventable death in the U.S.
- Usually, people require a significant reason to make a change to quit smoking, such
as a health reason or becoming a parent or grandparent.
- The exact personality factors that lead to quitting success are not well understood.
- Smokers often don’t succeed in quitting on the first several tries. The average number
of quit attempts is seven before someone is successful.
- Medications can help, but quitters should look at both psychological as well as physical
- “Quitting any addictive drug is complicated. With smoking, it’s even more so because
it’s a legal drug. It’s associated with so many things. Smokers often wonder, ‘What
am I going to do with all this time? How am I going to drink my coffee without a cigarette?
How am I going to eat my meal without a cigarette? It’s part of everything they do,
which complicates quitting.”
- “It’s very normal for smokers not to succeed quitting on the first several tries.
Whether you’re ultimately successful, you’ve learned something for the next time you
make that quit attempt. It’s important to look at what it was about previous attempts
that led you to fail”
- “It’s standard now to offer smokers medication. But medication won’t be enough. It’s
not as simple as just slipping a patch on. People should get into some sort of group
with people they can talk to. It’s very interesting how someone who tries and fails
numerous times can be very successful when they’re talking to people who understand.”