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Quitting Tobacco: How Do I Help My Family?

Father’s Day is a time when many of our families get together to show how much we appreciate our fathers.  When our families are close together, we are reminded of how special each person really is to us.  Tobacco use can negatively impact these relationships we have built.  You may be wondering, how can I help my son or daughter, husband or wife, relative, best friend, neighbor, employee, student, patient, or someone else stop smoking cigarettes? Below are some simple tips.

  • Give them practical help. Help make a quit kit. Include gum, toothpicks, mints anything they could use instead of tobacco. You can even add pictures of loved ones.
  • Help them stay busy. It will ease the urge to use tobacco – a feeling that usually passes in fifteen minutes or less. Make a list of things to do together, like doing yard work, going to the movies, taking walks, going to the mall or smoke-free restaurants.
  • Offer lots of encouragement. Let them know that you’re proud of them. Let them know that you are trying to understand how hard it is and reassure that this is the best decision they can make to improve their health.
  • Give lots of praise and offer rewards for getting through a day, a week, or a month without smoking. Rewards can be simple; flowers, a card or something to eat. Giving rewards right away works better than rewards promised for the future.  
  • Offer your help. Think of ways to make the first week less stressful. Help with chores or other things. Do not offer advice; let them share what they need help with.
  • Keep offering. Quitting is a step-by-step process. Listen well when they talk about it, remind them how far they have come, and keep offering help.
  • Try to see it from their side.  They’re not really sure he wants to quit. Cigarettes have been a steady friend for a long time. These feelings are normal even in smokers who succeed. Let them know you understand their doubts.
  • Respect that the quitter is in charge. This is their lifestyle change and their challenge, not yours.
  • Believe in the quitter. Don’t doubt the smoker’s ability to quit. Your faith in them reminds them they can do it. Don’t assume that they will lose the fight like before. A “slip” is pretty common when a person is quitting.
  • Be patient. Don’t take the quitter’s grumpiness personally during their nicotine withdrawal. Tell them that you understand the symptoms are real and remind them that they won’t last forever.

We will be going into more depth during the class, “A guide to help your loved ones Quit Tobacco”

When: July 1st at 12:15pm

Where: SLV Health Education, San Juan Conference Room (2115 Stuart Ave, Alamosa, CO)

For more information and to RSVP, please call Lisyuri Gallardo at (719) 589-8008