QUICK AND EASY WAYS TO SUPPORT YOUR LOVED ONE
• Put together a tobacco-free goodie bag. Possible items include sugar-free gum, cinnamon sticks, toothpicks, licorice, straws, a worry stone, a water bottle, low-fat snacks, notes to encourage and praise the quitting effort, a new toothbrush and toothpaste, and hard candies.
• Be ready for withdrawal symptoms your loved one might have such as irritability and tiredness—especially during the first week—and try not to take it personally.
• Help your loved one stay active by joining him or her for a bike ride, tennis match, or other outdoor fun.
• Offer to buy nicotine patches or gum, or a relaxing book or CD. • Make healthy, low-fat meals and snacks.
• Help remove or clean items that may remind the person of his or her habit such as ashtrays and smoky clothing. Wash your loved one’s car, including the inside, to reduce any smoke odors.
Communicate • Visit or call just to listen to your loved one’s concerns and feelings. • Take the person out to a smoke-free restaurant or social event. • Send a card congratulating him or her on quitting.
• Acknowledge how hard your loved one is working to quit; tell him or her you notice the efforts, in person or with a note.
• Give daily praise and compliments. Ask friends and family for their support and encouragement, too.
Recognize • Make coupons for fun activities such as hugs, walks, massages, or movies.
• Give a piggy bank to your loved one for the money he or she saves by not buying tobacco products.
• Buy your loved one a gift certificate for a manicure. Smoker’s fingers and nails may have yellowed from years of smoking.
Celebrate • Celebrate the first tobacco-free week, month, and each year. • Trow a six-month tobacco-free party.
How to Help Someone You Love Stop Using Tobacco 9
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