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Kicking the Habit Hard for Women

Counseling can help

Quitting smoking isn't easy for anyone, but it can be particularly difficult for women.

According to an article from ABC News, several factors might make it more difficult for women to give up the life-threatening habit. But there are ways to deal with them, the article says.

One of the problems is that nicotine-replacement therapy might not work as well for women as it does for men. Also, women tend to fear the weight gain that often comes with quitting more than men, husbands are often less supportive than are wives, and a woman's menstrual cycle can have an effect on withdrawal symptoms, the article says.

That doesn't mean women should abandon efforts to quit. It just means they sometimes have to try harder, or try different strategies. One such strategy is to seek counseling. About 90 percent of women try to quit without professional help, despite the fact that such help can triple the success rate.

Women also should try to plan ahead. Before quitting, keep track of how many cigarettes you are smoking, when you smoke them and why. Evaluate the triggers and settings that prompt you to reach for your pack. Also, try to understand how you are feeling when you light up. Research shows that a woman's emotional state is a big influence in her smoking.

Women on birth-control pills should not smoke. To find out why, you can read this article from Prevention magazine. Need more motivation? You can read this information from the American Cancer Society about tobacco-related cancers.

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