According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, nearly seven of 10 current U.S. smokers want to quit. So it’s no surprise that kicking the habit is a popular New Year’s resolution. We asked University Health and Counseling Services at Northeastern to provide strategies to help smokers quit and a rundown of smoking cessation resources available to students, faculty, and staff.
• Choose a reason to quit that is strong enough to outweigh the urge to smoke. Then set a quit date.
• You don’t have to do it alone. The encouragement of others could make a big difference, so tell your family and friends that you’re trying to quit.
• Set yourself up for success. Quitting cold turkey is not easy to do. Nicotine is addictive, and without it you may encounter symptoms of withdrawal. So it’s important to ask your clinician about your options.
• Students can take advantage of the Ready to Quit! Program, developed to offer personalized smoking cessation plans. Complete an assessment form online and UHCS will contact you to set up an appointment. The program also has three new components this academic year: UHCS tweets that offer smoking cessation strategies; a Facebook page with more information and where students can enroll; and two new student ambassadors who are promoting the programs at various times and locations on campus.
• In addition to Ready to Quit!, there is a comprehensive list of smoking cessation options available to students through UHCS and the Northeastern University Student Health Plan. Read more about them here. Counseling, nicotine replacement therapy, and cessation resources are also available to benefits-eligible faculty and staff through the Employee Assistance Program and their Blue Cross Blue Shield healthcare programs.