As Christmas approaches, those who have recently quit smoking may find the lead-up to the festive season challenging. This is a period of work parties and visits to friends and family during which we tend to drink more and relax. As a result, our inhibitions are reduced, and we are not able to think clearly as we normally would. Getting ready for Christmas can also be stressful as we try to find the perfect gift, spend more money than usual, manage excited children, and ensure the big day runs smoothly.

Here are some tips to help you stay smoke-free this Christmas:

Prepare in advance

Consider how you will deal with friends/work colleagues who smoke. Consider having a go-to strategy to distract yourself and a smoking cessation aid like a Nicotine Replacement method to deal with the cravings.

Remember your journey

Take some time to think about why you want to quit smoking. Make a note of them and keep them handy. Reflect on how far you have come and how much you have accomplished.

Make sure you have enough NRT products to see you through the season

Give yourself the best shot at staying smoke-free by checking your doctor's or pharmacy holiday opening hours and ordering enough supplies for the holiday period.

Avoid stress

Family and friends gatherings are an excellent opportunity to spend time together and reconnect, but they can also be very overwhelming. Whenever you feel stressed, step away from the situation and take a moment to yourself, practice deep breathing, or go for a walk.

Reward your hard work

Having recently quit smoking can be challenging during the holiday season. Give yourself a pat on the back and congratulate yourself for your accomplishments. Using the money you've saved by not smoking, purchase a special present for yourself.