Quick Tips: What to Do When You Crave Nicotine

Got a craving right now?

The cravings for nicotine can be intense for the first few days when you stop smoking, but they will get better with time. Here are some tips on how to cope:

  • Use nicotine gum, lozenges, or an inhaler.
  • Distract yourself. Stop what you are doing, and do something else.
  • Remind yourself why you stopped smoking.
  • Remember that most cravings do go away.
  • Go for a walk.
  • Take a bath.
  • Call a friend.
  • Exercise. Go for a jog, a bike ride, or a swim.
  • Drink a glass of water.
  • Suck on a piece of hard candy.
  • Listen to music.
  • Chew on a toothpick or a piece of gum.
  • Relax! Try deep-breathing exercises or yoga.
  • Do a puzzle or some other activity that uses your hands.
  • Work in the garden—pull weeds or rake leaves.

What else works?

Use the space below to add to the list of things that help you get through a craving.

Credits

Author Bets Davis, MFA
Editor Susan Van Houten, RN, BSN, MBA
Associate Editor Pat Truman, MATC
Primary Medical Reviewer Kathleen Romito, MD - Family Medicine
Specialist Medical Reviewer John Hughes, MD - Psychiatry
Last Updated July 22, 2009

Last Updated: July 22, 2009

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