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Advice if you’ve tried to stop smoking before

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Stopping smoking can be hard. If you’ve tried before and it didn’t work, don’t feel like a failure. Even if your attempt didn’t work, you can learn something for the next time you try. Never give up giving up.

If you’ve tried to stop smoking before and you want to try again:

  • congratulate yourself on what you’ve achieved so far - making the decision to quit is a big step
  • learn from your mistakes - for example, if not smoking around certain people is hard, avoid them for a little while
  • try changing your routine if you found particular times of the day hard
  • think about whether nicotine replacement therapy (like patches or gum) or prescription treatments to stop smoking might help you
  • try a different type of nicotine replacement therapy or medication if one type didn’t work last time, or try using a combination

Get back on track

Ask yourself what caused you to slip up and decide what you’ll do differently this time. Find out how to cope with or avoid situations that trigger you to smoke.

If you have a Quit plan, revisit it. Think about doing something different. If you don’t have one already, sign up for help to quit smoking - it can keep you on track.

The HSE Quit team is also here to help you. Contact us for face-to-face, telephone and live chat support to help you stop smoking.

You can also find your nearest stop smoking clinic, where an advisor will be able to help you.

Related topic

Cravings and withdrawal when you stop smoking

page last reviewed: 25/03/2019
next review due: 25/03/2022

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