Quitting smoking is difficult for anyone, but did you know it can be harder if you’re a woman? There are a few reasons why this may be:
- Women are more likely to be smokers to reduce stress and enjoy the feeling of control that comes from smoking.
- Women may be more vulnerable to environmental cues associated with smoking, such as certain people, events and locations.
- Women experience more severe withdrawal symptoms, making sticking to a quit plan more difficult.
- Nicotine affects the brain differently in women, making certain smoking cessation aids and nicotine replacement therapies less effective.
- Hormonal fluctuations during menstrual cycles can interfere with quitting and impact the response to smoking cessation aids.
- The weight gain associated with smoking cessation can deter some women from quitting.
How can women overcome these additional challenges to quitting?
- Accept the weight gain – remember it is likely only a few pounds and you will be much healthier overall once you quit.
- Explore new stress management techniques if smoking is a stress coping mechanism for you – try yoga, exercise, reading or a hobby.
- For many women, smoking is deeply engrained into their daily activities, so change your routine to make encountering triggers less likely.
If you need more assistance quitting, consider our Smoke-Free for Life program. We can help provide you with more strategies and support to help you become tobacco-free.