What are the best & most effective ways to give up smoking cigarettes?

Your success in stopping smoking depends very much on the method you decide to use. You can make any task difficult by going about it the wrong way. Try crossing the road blindfold, drunk, standing on your hands and the chances are you won’t make it! Do it in a more sensible and simple way and you can’t fail.

Which method you choose to help you to achieve your goal is therefore very important. Although there are numerous techniques and treatments purporting to help you stop smoking, most of them result in less than one person out of ten actually succeeding.

Comparison table of quit smoking methods (click the method to read more about it)

Method  Money Back Guarantee? Nictoine or Drug Free? Potential Side Effects? Allowed during pregnancy? Initial Cost? Ongoing Cost? Method 
Willpower1 N/A Yes No Yes No – Free No – Free Willpower1
Allen Carr’s Easyway12 Yes Yes No Yes Yes – Medium No Allen Carr’s Easyway12
E-cigarettes / Vaping2-10 No No Yes Yes – Under Advice Yes – Medium Yes – Lifelong E-cigarettes / Vaping2-10
Heat not burn / IQOS2-10 No No Yes Yes – Under Advice Yes – Medium Yes – Lifelong Heat not burn / IQOS2-10
Nicotine Replacement Therapy (Patches, Gum)2-10 No No Yes Yes – Under Advice Yes – Medium Yes – Potentially Lifelong Nicotine Replacement Therapy (Patches, Gum)2-10
Champix / Chantix / Varenicline2-10 No No Yes No Yes – Medium No Champix / Chantix / Varenicline2-10
Zyban / Buproprion2-10 No No Yes No Yes – Medium No Zyban / Buproprion2-10
Acupuncture1 No Yes No Yes Yes – High Yes – Weeks / Months Acupuncture1
Hypnosis11 No Yes No Yes Yes – High No Hypnosis11

 Natural ways to quit smoking

The following section covers a variety of methods that do not require any substitute for the nicotine in your cigarettes.

1. Willpower / Cold Turkey (stop smoking immediately)

Treatment: This is the method most commonly used by smokers in their attempts to stop. The aim is that by stopping smoking, without any support, and utilising sheer willpower they will overcome their nicotine addiction and be free. 

Side Effects: Mood; aggression; anxiety; depression and irritability; weight gain & substitution.

Who can use it: Anyone can try to stop smoking using willpower.

Comment: The big issue with this method is that the smoker is left with a feeling that they have lost or given something up. Over time this normally leads to a yearning and longing desire to return to smoking. It’s caused by a feeling of sacrifice which is based on the belief that smoking provided a pleasure and some benefits. The yearning often leads to substitution (eating or drinking instead of smoking) which in turn, leads to weight gain. The former smoker feels constantly deprived and whenever they think about cigarettes or experience a moment when they might normally smoke, they feel miserable. This is often a recipe for failure.

Not being able to stop smoking by willpower is not an indication that you’re weak-willed. It just means that you chose the wrong method. Ironically, very strong-willed people can find the willpower method particularly difficult. After all, which child will scream longest and loudest when you take away their favourite toy at dinner time, the strong-willed one or the weak-willed one? In fact, succeeding on the willpower method can be very difficult indeed1.

2. Acupuncture

Treatment: This is a traditional Chinese therapy in which certain acupunctural points are stimulated by inserting needles into the patient’s body. The aim is to mitigate withdrawal symptoms and hence make it easier to quit.

Side Effects: None

Who can use it: Anyone can try to stop smoking using acupuncture

Comment: There is no scientific proof that the meridians or acupuncture points exist, and it is hard to prove that they either do or do not. It’s quite possible that some conditions might be helped using acupuncture, but acupuncture doesn’t claim to cure smoking – it merely claims to help with feelings of withdrawal. Nicotine withdrawal is actually very mild and as long as the correct method is used to quit smoking, acupuncture is therefore neither helpful nor necessary1.

3. Hypnosis

Treatment: The smoker is put into a relaxed, altered state of awareness, and suggestions designed to amplify the downsides of smoking, and encourage the enjoyment of freedom, effectively attempt to bolster willpower.

Side Effects: None

Who can use it: Anyone can try to stop using hypnosis

Comment: Although hypnosis can be a very enjoyable and relaxing thing to experience, unless the suggestions made during the process are useful, it doesn’t really add much in terms of re-enforcing the smoker’s efforts. For example, using hypnosis in an attempt to bolster a smoker’s willpower is simply reinforcing an attempt to quit smoking using an inefficient, uncomfortable, and quite unsuccessful method11.

4. Allen Carr´s Easyway

Treatment: The world’s most popular and successful way to quit smoking with an estimated 30 million people helped worldwide. It is often described as a cognitive behavioural therapy, or “talking therapy” (or self-help in its written form) which engages with smokers and has them correct their understanding of what causes them to smoke. At the live seminars it takes around 5 hours and the smoker carries on smoking until they feel ready to throw their cigarettes away.

There are absolutely no shock or scare tactics, and no uncomfortable discussion of health implications. Smokers know all about those already. Instead, the Therapist helps the smoker dismantle all their arguments and reasons “for” smoking, leaving them to feel happy and relieved to “get rid of smoking” – rather than “giving it up” with a reluctant feeling of sacrifice – they feel genuinely delighted to be free.

Side Effects: None

Who can use it: Anyone

Comment: There are no side effects, it is clinically proven and it is entirely drug-free, with no need to use any nicotine products such as e-cigarettes, patches or gum and no need for any other smoking cessation drugs.

In a recent study, funded by the Irish Government, it was shown to be nearly twice as successful as the Irish stop smoking service (Quit.ie)12 and in another study by the University of Vienna the success rate after a year was seen to be 51% 12. There is also a full money back guarantee.

Read More about How to Quit with Allen Carr’s Easyway

Nicotine Substitute

There are many nicotine substitutes from gum and patches to e-cigarettes and new products such as heat not burn devices. The following section covers a variety of nicotine substitutes that are available.

5. Nicotine replacement therapy (NRT)

Treatment: This involves the smoker swapping cigarettes for nicotine gum, patches, inhalators, puffers, nasal sprays, mouth sprays, or lozenges. The therapy therefore provides nicotine but without the tar, carbon monoxide and other poisonous chemicals found in smoking. The aim is that over time the smoker or vaper moves completely to NRT and then phases out the gum or patches to become free of nicotine. In the UK, NRT is initially obtained via prescription from local NHS stop smoking services and is given for a 3 month period after which NRT must be purchased direct from the chemist/pharmacy.

Side Effects: These can include headache, dizziness, nausea, vomiting, skin irritation, insomnia, and nightmares.

Who can use it: Most adults and children over 12 years of age can try this but anyone with a heart or circulatory condition, or on regular medication should check with their doctor. Anyone breast-feeding or pregnant should seek medical advice.

Comment: The problem is that the term NRT is a misnomer. Nicotine is not being replaced, it’s being maintained and since nicotine is a highly addictive poison, there’s nothing therapeutic about it! In fact, very few smokers using NRT are successful in stopping altogether in anything but the very short term2-10. Many go back to smoking or vaping and those that don’t have to continue to pay for the nicotine products. It is also quite common for people to continue to smoke as well as take NRT.

6. E-cigarettes / Vaping

Treatment: This involves the smoker swapping cigarettes for an electronic device which delivers the nicotine in a vapour form. Nicotine is therefore provided but without the tar or carbon monoxide found in smoking. The aim is that over time the smoker moves completely to e-cigarettes and then phases out the e-cigarettes to become free of nicotine or simply carries on using e-cigarettes for the rest of their lives.

Side Effects: The vaping juice contains many chemicals including nicotine and to date there has not been sufficient research into the long term effects of vaping on the lungs and body. However, in recent months there have been studies published that suggest e-cigarettes harm the cardiovascular system13 of healthy young adults; increase risk of myocardial infection14; may impair the cells lining the lungs15; may hamper the lungs’ ability to fend off infections16 and liquids vaporised by e-cigarettes are chemically unstable and form new chemicals that irritate the airways and may have other toxic effects16. It’s likely that future research will identify further side-effects over the coming years.

Who can use it: Most adults can try this but anyone with a heart, respiratory, or circulatory condition, or on regular medication should check with their doctor.

Comment: The problem is that E-cigarettes are just another nicotine delivery system but with currently unknown side effects. There continues to be a significant on-going cost and you are not free of nicotine addiction while opening yourself up to unknown long-term side effects. It has also been noted that many people continue to smoke and vape, and therefore end up increasing their nicotine consumption but without any decrease in health risk compared to someone who just smokes.

Read more about How to Stop Vaping with Allen Carr’s Easyway

7. Heat not burn / IQOS

Treatment:This involves the smoker swapping cigarettes for an electronic device which heats rather than burns processed tobacco. The heating process generates a nicotine-containing vapor. Since the tobacco does not burn, the levels of harmful chemicals are somewhat reduced compared to cigarette smoke. The aim is that over time the smoker moves completely to heated tobacco products and then phases them out to become free of nicotine or simply carries on using the products for the rest of their lives.

Side Effects: The vapour contains many chemicals including nicotine and to date there has not been sufficient research into the long-term effects of heat-not-burn devices. It’s assumed that these products are even more damaging to health than e-cigarettes. It’s likely that future research will identify further side-effects over the coming years.

Who can use it: Most adults can try this but anyone with a heart, respiratory, or circulatory condition, or on regular medication should check with their doctor.

Comment: The problem is that heat-not-burn devices are just another nicotine delivery system but with currently unknown side effects. There continues to be a significant on-going cost and you are not free of nicotine addiction while opening yourself up to unknown long-term side effects. It has also been noted that many people continue to smoke and use heat-not-burn devices, and therefore end up increasing their nicotine consumption but without any decrease in health risk compared to someone who just smokes.

Read more about How to Stop Vaping with Allen Carr’s Easyway

Smoking Cessation Drugs

There are many quit smoking medications, one of which is stop smoking pills. The following section covers a variety of smoking cessation medications that are available.

8. Champix / Chantix /Varenicline

Treatment:Champix in Europe or Chantix in USA is a well known quit smoking medication which requires a prescription due to the long list of possible side effects. How does Chantix work? The theory is that it reduces the craving for nicotine and blocks the reward pathways. One or two of the stop smoking pills are taken a day, or as otherwise directed by the prescribing physician, starting one or two weeks before the planned stop date. Treatment normally lasts for 3 months.

Side Effects:There are often side effects including feeling and being sick, difficulty sleeping (insomnia), sometimes with vivid dreams, dry mouth, constipation or diarrhoea, headaches, drowsiness, and dizziness. 

Who can use it: You must be over 18 years old and pregnant women, airline pilots and other professions are not allowed to use Champix. Prescription only.

Comment: It’s quite a serious drug to take and is only available on prescription. For those who would prefer a drug-free approach it’s unlikely to be an attractive proposition.2-10.

9. Zyban / Buproprion

Treatment: This stop smoking pill is a widely prescribed drug that was initially used to help with depression. It is therefore actually an anti-depressant drug and in theory it reduces cravings and other withdrawal effects so helping smokers to stop smoking. One or two tables are taken a day, or otherwise directed by the prescribing physician, starting one or two weeks before the planned stop date. Treatment lasts for around 2 months.

Side Effects: This smoking cessation medication can have side effects such as dry mouth, difficulty sleeping (insomnia), headaches, feeling and being sick, constipation, difficulty concentrating, and dizziness.

Who can use it: You must be over 18 years old and it is not allowed for anyone who is pregnant or breastfeeding. This quit smoking medication is also not suitable for those people living with epilepsy, bipolar disorder or eating disorders. Prescription only.

Comment: It’s quite a serious drug to take and is only available on prescription. For those who would prefer a drug-free approach it’s unlikely to be an attractive proposition2-10.

Why You Should Stop Smoking

Books to help quit smoking

There are a large number of books available to help you to quit smoking but the following are the highest rated on Amazon. The Allen Carr’s Easyway to Stop Smoking books are by far the biggest selling and most successful year in and year out over the last 30 years.

However, seminars are by far the most effective way of stopping – hence why Allen Carr’s Easyway to Stop Smoking are able to offer the unique money back guarantee.

#1 Best Seller Worldwide

Allen Carr’s Easyway to Stop Smoking

Allen Carr’s Easy Way to Stop Smoking is a self-help classic, with over 20m copies sold worldwide. It has been a #1 bestseller in nine European countries. It outsells all other quit smoking titles combined.

#2 Best Seller Worldwide

Allen Carr’s Easyway for Women to Stop Smoking

This book addresses the difficulties that women smokers face when trying to quit, and shows how his technique successfully resolves them. Allen’s unique method removes the feeling of deprivation and works without using willpower. 

#2 Best Seller USA

Allen Carr’s Easyway to Quit Smoking

This book is the most up-to-date, cutting-edge, best-practice version of Allen Carr’s Easyway method. It now includes advice on vaping, cannabis, JUUL, self-harm & anxiety, the dopamine issue, and more advice about habitual triggers. Through following this method, you will not only be set free from your smoking addiction but you will also find it easy and even enjoyable to quit.

We’re #1 in the World

Don’t just take our word for it

Here are some celebrities with their thoughts on Allen Carr’s Easyway to stop smoking method

Hrithik Roshan

“I tried quitting five times before and failed then I came across Allen Carr’s Easyway…If I can quit so can you!”*

*Results may vary

Sir Richard Branson

“His method is absolutely unique…. I’m pleased to say it has worked for many of my friends and staff”*

*Results may vary

Ashton Kutcher

“I haven’t smoked since!”*

*Results may vary

Ellen DeGeneres

“If you want to quit… it’s called the Easyway to Stop Smoking… I’m so glad I stopped”*

*Results may vary

Raviraj Kande

(quit smoking)

Seven years since quitting and not tempted anymore*

*Results may vary

Sir Anthony Hopkins

“it was such a revelation that instantly I was freed from my addiction.”*

*Results may vary

Chrissie Hynde

“The moral of my story is that drugs, including tobacco & alcohol, only cause suffering. I used Allen Carr’s Easyway and I stopped.”*

*Results may vary

robert pattinson

Robert Pattinson

Quit smoking with Allen Carr’s Easyway*

*Results may vary

Been 1 year smoke free

Real People, Real Stories – Testimonial by Dave Fenton, USA*

View more success stories

*results may vary

What is Allen Carr’s Easyway? – short video with subtitles

If you want to read more then click here

 

Clinically Proven Method

Allen Carrs easyway is clinically proven and drug free

The Allen Carr’s Easyway method has been clinically proven in two randomised controlled trials. The results show it to be as good as, if not better than the UK’s Gold standard NHS 1-1 Stop Smoking Service1 and almost twice as effective as the Irish Governments Quit.it service2 . It does not require the use of any drugs or nicotine products.

Read more about success rates 

Stop smoking programmes

Easyway doesn’t focus on the downsides of smoking and vaping – you know all about those already. Instead the method answers the question “what’s so great about being a smoker/vaper?” Understanding that is the key to being set free.

There a number of wasy of using the Allen Carr’s Easyway method choose the right one for you.

Prices from £99.

Stop smoking programmes

Vitality UK Members go FREE

Stopping smoking is one of the biggest things you can do to improve your health. That’s why Vitality Health and Vitality Life have partnered with us to offer UK Vitality members a free stop smoking programme.

Read more

 

Can’t visit a centre? Try these options

If you can’t get to one of our centres then take a look at these alternative options available for you

One-to-One online seminar
On-Demand video service
One-to-One seminar at your home

Free online consultation

Not sure if you’re ready? Daunted by the prospect of what stopping smoking will mean for you? We can help.

Take a few minutes to fill out our online consultation and we will get back to you with our personalised recommendation.

Go on, start your journey to freedom today!

Online consultation

Tell a friend about Allen Carr’s Easyway

 

envelope_icon

 

Do you know someone who would benefit from being introduced to Allen Carr’s Easyway? Send them this page via email

References:

  1. Lancaster T, Stead LF. Self-help interventions for smoking cessation. Cochrane Database of Systematic Reviews 2005, Issue 3. Art. No.: CD001118. DOI:10.1002/14651858.CD001118.pub2
  2. Stead LF. Nicotine replacement therapy for smoking cessation. Cochrane Database of Systematic Reviews 2012 Art. No.: CD000146. DOI: 10.1002/14651858.
  3. Hughes J, Rennard S. Efficacy of Varenicline to Prompt Quit Attempts in Smokers Not Currently Trying to Quit: A Randomized Placebo-Controlled Trial. Nicotine & Tobacco Research Journal. Septmber 2011
  4. Fiore MC, Bailey WC, Cohen SJ, et al. Treating Tobacco Use and Dependence. Clinical Practice Guideline. Rockville, MD: U.S. Department of Health and Human Services. Public Health Service. June 2000.
  5. Lancaster T, Stead LF. Self-help interventions for smoking cessation. Cochrane Database of Systematic Reviews 2005, Issue 3. Art. No.: CD001118. DOI:10.1002/14651858.CD001118.pub2.
  6. Wu P, Wilson K, Dimoulas P, et al. Effectiveness of smoking cessation therapies: a systematic review and meta-analysis. BMC Public Health 2006; 6: 300.
  7. Cahill K, Stead LF, Lancaster T. Nicotine receptor partial agonists for smoking cessation. Cochrane Database of Systematic Reviews 2007, Issue 1. Art. No.: CD006103. DOI: 10.1002/14651858.CD006103.pub2.
  8. Hughes JR, Stead LF, Lancaster T. Antidepressants for smoking cessation. Cochrane Database of Systematic Reviews 2007, Issue 1. Art. No.: CD000031. DOI: 10.1002/14651858.CD000031.pub3.
  9. Crane R. The most addictive drug, the most deadly substance: smoking cessation tactics for the busy clinician. Prim Care Clin Office Pract 2007; 34: 117-35.
  10. GlaxoSmithKline. Zyban SR Prescribing Information. May 2007. http://us.gsk.com/products/assets/us_zyban.pdf. Last accessed 25 June 07
  11. Hypnotherapy for smoking cessation Barnes J, Dong CY, McRobbie H, Walker N, Mehta M, Stead LF Cochrane review 2010, issue 10
  12. In a 2 to 5 year post session study the success rate was seen to be 51%. Moshammer H, Neuberger M, Kong term success of short smoking cessation seminars supported by occupational health care. Addictive Behaviours 32 (2007) 1486-1493.
    National 12 month Clinical Trial finds Allen Carr’s Easyway almost twice as effective as other smoking cessation methods available on Health Service. Keogan, S., Li, S., Clancy L. (2018) Allen Carr’s Easyway to Stop Smoking – A randomised clinical trial. BMJ Tobacco Control, Issue 4 Volume 28
  13. Acute Effects of Electronic Cigarette Aerosol Inhalation on Vascular Function Detected at Quantitative MRI Alessandra Caporale
  14. Electronic Cigarette Use and Myocardial Infarction Among Adults in the US Population Assessment of Tobacco and Health Journal of the American Heart Association. 2019;8:e012317 D Bhatta and S Glantz
  15. Madison, M. C., et al. (2019). Electronic cigarettes disrupt lung lipid homeostasis and innate immunity independent of nicotine
  16. Electronic cigarettes disrupt lung lipid homeostasis and innate immunity independent of nicotine M Madison, C Landers Journal of Clinical Investigation2019 JCI128531
  17. Hanno C Erythropel, Sairam V Jabba, Tamara M DeWinter, Melissa Mendizabal, Paul T Anastas, Sven E Jordt, Julie B Zimmerman. Formation of flavorant–propylene Glycol Adducts With Novel Toxicological Properties in Chemically Unstable E-Cigarette Liquids. Nicotine & Tobacco Research, 2018; DOI: 10.1093/ntr/nty192
Close