WellSpan Home

Quitting Smoking: How Family and Friends Can Help

Topic Overview

Helping someone decide to quit

You can gently encourage someone who smokes to quit. Think of your comments about smoking as only one event that moves that person toward quitting.

  • Start any discussion of quitting in a gentle way.
  • Let the person know why you want him or her to quit. Give the person reasons that are as important to him or her as they are to you. (Try "I want you to be with us for a long time" rather than "I'm tired of cleaning your dirty ashtrays.")
  • One good way to begin is to mention a new treatment option you have heard or read about.
  • Make it short (less than 5 minutes).
  • Ask whether there is a way that you can help him or her quit.
  • Repeat your attempt every 6 to 12 months.

Helping someone who is quitting

Family and friends are a valuable source of support and motivation for a person who is trying to quit smoking. People who have already quit are an even greater source of comfort and can offer tips for success.

If a person who smokes asks for your support while trying to quit, you can:

  • Help distract him or her. Join in the activities he or she does to decrease the craving to smoke, such as lunchtime walks or hobbies.
  • Ignore grouchy moods. Try your best to tolerate any bad moods. They won't last forever.
  • Provide a reward when he or she meets a goal or milestone without using tobacco.
  • Ask the person what he or she needs from you.
  • If you smoke, don't smoke around the person who is trying to quit. Don't offer a cigarette, even as a joke. Don't leave your cigarettes where they will tempt the person to take one.
  • If you have quit smoking, talk often to the person about positive changes in your health and sense of well-being. Talk about the times when you found it most difficult not to smoke and what you did to get through those situations.

Helping someone who relapses

Most people try to quit smoking many times before they are successful. Don't give up your efforts. If the person you care about fails to quit, you can:

  • Praise him or her for trying to quit, and for whatever length of time (days, weeks, or months) of not smoking.
  • Encourage him or her to try again. Don't say "If you try again." Say "When you try again." Studies show that most people who don't succeed in quitting will try again in the near future.
  • Encourage him or her to learn from the attempt. Things a person learns from a failed attempt to quit may help him or her be successful in a future attempt.
  • Suggest that he or she consider more intensive treatment when ready to try again.

Related Information

Credits

ByHealthwise Staff
Primary Medical ReviewerAdam Husney, MD - Family Medicine
Kathleen Romito, MD - Family Medicine
Specialist Medical ReviewerChristine R. Maldonado, PhD - Behavioral Health

Current as ofNovember 29, 2017


Are you sure you would like to cancel?

All information will be lost.

Yes No ×

About the provider search

This search will provide you with WellSpan Medical Group and Northern Lancaster County (Ephrata) Medical Group primary care physicians and specialists. If we don’t have a WellSpan Medical Group physician to meet your criteria, the search will expand to include community physicians who partner with WellSpan Medical Group physicians through the WellSpan Provider Network or provide care to patients on the Medical Staffs of WellSpan’s Hospitals.

×

Schedule Your Next Appointment Online with MyWellSpan

Use your MyWellSpan patient portal any time to view available appointments, and pick the date and time that best suits your schedule.

Go to MyWellSpan

New to this practice?

If you don't have a WellSpan primary care provider and would like to schedule a new patient appointment with a provider who is accepting patients, just log into your MyWellSpan account, and go to the Appointment Center section. As you progress through the scheduling process, you will be able to see the offices that are accepting new patients in relation to your zip code. If you are not enrolled in MyWellSpan, go to https://my.wellspan.org, call 1-866-638-1842 or speak with a member of the staff at a participating facility to sign up. New patient scheduling not available at all practices/programs.

Already a patient at this practice?

If you already have a relationship with a WellSpan practice, simply log into your account, and go to the Appointment Center section. As you progress through the scheduling process, you will be able to schedule an appointment with any provider or practice that already counts you as a patient. Online scheduling varies by practice/program.

×