Smokers and Friends

Quit Your Way…

Alternative Approaches

Alternative Approaches

Popular alternative quit methods (like acupuncture, laser, hypnosis, or herbals) are NOT proven to increase your odds of quitting.1

What they do for you

Because there is no scientifically sound body of research into alternative therapies, it is difficult to say what laser, acupuncture, hypnosis, and herbals do for you. Things like laser and acupuncture are supposed to release endorphins that make you feel good and reduce cravings for nicotine. Hypnosis is supposed to make you open to the suggestion that you don’t like smoking.

All of them are expensive, and research actually suggests that any positive effect might come from whether you believe the procedure works.2

How to use them

Most people who say an alternative method worked for them were actually following a very good cold turkey quitting plan and paying for something like acupuncture, laser, hypnosis or herbals. They were avoiding things that made them want to smoke, using their own effective strategies to deal with temptations to smoke, and getting positive support from friends and family. So in fact, it was their quitting plan that helped them quit (and possibly their belief that this procedure was going to be successful).

To make an alternative method work for you, be sure to have a good cold turkey quitting plan ready to go!

How much they cost

Most alternative approaches are expensive: hundreds of dollars per session. You really need to weigh it out for yourself. Do you want to spend money on something that has not been proven to work?

A Note About Electronic Cigarettes

This is a new product that may pose health risks and has not been fully evaluated for safety, quality and efficacy by Health Canada. It is NOT an aid for quitting smoking. Read here.

1 Fiore, MC. et al. (2008). Treating Tobacco Use and Dependence: 2008 Update. Clinical Practice Guideline. U.S. Department of Health and Human Services.

2 White, AR et al. (2006). Acupuncture and related interventions for smoking cessation. Cochrane Database of Systematic Reviews.

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