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If you've decided to quit smoking, then congratulations. While it may not seem like it right now, just deciding that you are no longer going to smoke is winning half the battle. A strong resolve will get you through the other half. However, if you've not been meeting with much success, do not despair. Know that most people have to try a few times before they are actually able to stop smoking completely.
In order to stay motivated, remind yourself that estimates say that about half of the people who don't stop smoking will die of smoking-related health issues. Also, a list of reasons to get rid of the habit will help you resist when a craving strikes. If you feel that you would like some assistance while you make the transition, you could get in touch with a tobacco treatment specialist or join a treatment program. Another facility you could avail is toll-free tobacco quit lines, that are available in every state of the United States. You could also try a natural treatment, such as acupuncture, to discontinue smoking. While it isn't a magic cure, it might help to reduce the cravings.
Acupuncture to Quit Smoking
Acupuncture has been an important part of traditional Chinese medicine, and is known to provide relief to a number of conditions. It is said to be especially effective for relieving stress. The use of acupuncture for addiction was popularized in the early 1970s, after a patient with opium withdrawal symptoms said that his symptoms disappeared after receiving electroacupuncture. While the effectiveness of acupuncture for smokers who are trying to quit is disputed, many find that acupuncture helps to deal with nicotine withdrawal symptoms. The advantage of this treatment is that it helps you get through this quitting phase, without relying on chemicals or NRT (nicotine replacement therapy) medication.
When you go to an acupuncturist, he/she may ask you a few questions to understand your unique smoking habits. A physical examination of blood pressure, pulse, and checking the tongue may also be done. If you explain your emotional and physical symptoms well, it will put the practitioner in a better position to treat you. The treatment is aimed at relieving the jitters, the cravings, the irritability, and the restlessness commonly experienced. It will also aid in relaxation and detoxification.
Acupuncture Points
While the points used on each patient differ, ear acupuncture is most commonly used for smoking cessation. However, equally often, a patient is treated to a combination of body points. The commonly used acupressure body points are Tim Mee, which is specifically to help discontinue smoking, and is an extra-meridian point located on the wrist, and the Four Gate Points, which can help calm the nervous system. Commonly used ear points are the shenmen, kidney, sympathetic, lung upper and lung lower, and hunger or mouth.
Cost and Duration
The length, number, and frequency of the treatment will depend on the individual's condition. On an average, a session may last from five to 30 minutes, and one may have to attend one or two sessions per week. In many cases, after the needles are removed, the points are stimulated with ear press needles or silver pellets, to reduce cravings. In mild cases, symptoms may be relieved after just one treatment, while in more severe, it may take a few treatments before any relief is experienced. One estimate of a package comprising initial consultation and four acupuncture treatments is around $495.00.
If you decide to explore this option, stick to the traditional method, for little verification can be offered for new-found methods such as laser acupuncture to do away with smoking. Also, remember that acupressure will not make you quit, but will help you quit. The effort and resolve has to be your own.