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Coping with Relapses

Most relapses occur within three months of quitting

Most relapses occur within three months of quitting, but do not worry; it is not the end of the world. Be easy on yourself. Quitting is a very difficult thing to do. It takes a lot of effort. You can learn from the relapse. Whatever you do, do not give up. You are still working on becoming a non-smoker or tobacco non-user It often takes a few tries before you can totally quit.

It will help to examine what triggered the relapse. Analyze the situation. What was the immediate cause for your slip? If this situation were to arise again, how could you deal with it better? Think of how long you have been smoke-free. Remember it is only a slip. Here are some common causes for relapses and how you can deal with them.


Refrain from drinking alcohol.

Other Smokers

If you are usually around people who smoke, you can try to get them to quit with you. Or ask them to not smoke when you are around.


Some people may revert back to using tobacco when they are sad, depressed, or stressed. If you find yourself in a constant negative mood, talk to your doctor about treatment for depression.

Withdrawal Symptoms

It is common to experience some withdrawal symptoms while you are quitting. If they persist for a long time or are very severe, try using the patch or gum if you are not doing so already. See Common Problems in Quitting for more details about withdrawal symptoms.

Don't Quit Quitting!

You didn't turn into a tobacco user overnight so you probably won't quit overnight. Many people "quit" several times before they quit for good. However, keep going. It's worth it. Every day you don't use tobacco products is making you healthier.

Quitting may be the toughest thing you will ever do. However, quitting is the best thing that you can do for your health. If you can successfully quit, you can handle almost anything!

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