Cognitive behavioural hypnotherapy (CBH) to quit smoking

You really want to quit smoking but you can’t stop yourself from buying a pack, from quickly lighting a cigarette before your brain can say no. You’ve probably tried to quit several times from half a day to half a month but you keep coming back. Does it feel like cigarettes have a hold over you and you don’t have a choice or control?

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You are not alone. The shocking truth is that nicotine is as addictive as drugs like cocaine and heroin, which is why smoking is a hard habit to kick. The good news is that around a million people reported quitting in the UK in 2021-22. If a million people could do it, so can you.


The hard truth

On a slightly bleak but real note, cigarettes are the single largest cause of premature disability and death in the UK. Around 76,000 people in the UK die from smoking each year. All this is because tobacco companies made brilliant ads that seduced people and got them hooked as children. Sadly, unlike other drugs, smoking is permitted in society and so people go deeper into addiction in plain sight.

What are your options to quit?

Apart from going cold turkey, what are your options to quit? Medical options fall under two categories - NRT (patches, gum, inhalators, lozenges) and a medication option in the form of Bupropion. Natural interventions include hypnotherapy and acupuncture. Studies have shown that you can increase your chances of success by combining different methods. And why not - now that you have decided to quit, why not give it all you can?


Cognitive behavioural hypnotherapy (CBH)

The combination of hypnotherapy and CBT combines a wide range of evidence-based interventions. In my practice, I help people change their thoughts and behaviour patterns using CBT and I solidify and amplify the message using hypnotherapy. I help you identify the underlying issues like stress, anxiety or emotional struggles that make you crave cigarettes and learn coping mechanisms to feel happier, relaxed and more self-confident.

CBH is a combination of two powerful techniques. After this treatment, you will feel empowered to manage both cravings and stress without the need to smoke. By challenging irrational thoughts and beliefs about smoking, you can reframe negative thought patterns and adopt healthier attitudes. Several studies have shown hypnotherapy to be far more effective than other interventions. It has been shown to be much more effective than NRT in particular. 

Word of caution

No hypnotherapist can make you quit if you don’t want to quit. The desire to quit and motivation are crucial when quitting smoking. Most hypnotherapists arrange a free consultation to ensure that the person they are taking on genuinely want to quit and that now is a good time. The hypnotherapist might ask you to come back later if you have been pressured by others or are attempting to quit during a particularly stressful period in your life.

Before the session

Once you have signed up for the therapy, I would highly recommend trying to cut down as much as you can in the days leading up to the session, so the process is gentler on you. 

The views expressed in this article are those of the author. All articles published on Hypnotherapy Directory are reviewed by our editorial team.

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Richmond TW9
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Written by Chinmai Gupta, BA, MSc, Dip Cognitive Behavioural Hypnotherapy
Richmond TW9

Chinmai is a Cognitive Behavioural Hypnotherapist. Her approach is deeply empathic and practical and she can help you to:

• Manage and overcome problems related to stress, anxiety, confidence and self-image
• Perform better
• Find your voice
• Improve your relationships
• Find happiness
• Manage fears and phobias

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