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Support a loved one trying to quit smoking

A life coach offers advice in terms of how you can support a loved on who is trying to quit smoking.

POLOKWANE – One of the most-spoken about topics relating to the lockdown, is the prohibition on buying cigarettes. Some people have managed to buy illegal smokes at ridiculous prices, while others decided to stop smoking all-together.

Review spoke to life coach, Marie-Lee du Plooy about how to handle a loved one who has decided to stop smoking.

“Suddenly, nothing is normal and habits, due to the availability of certain goods, have to change. As we all thought that lockdown would only be three weeks, we stocked up for three weeks and then lockdown was extended and our cigarettes and liquor depleted.”

She emphasised the fact that smoking, much like drugs and alcohol, can be detrimental to your health.

“A smoker is so used to taking a cigarette and smoking it. If the packet is finished, they just buy another one. With the country in lockdown, pipes, cigarettes and electronic vaping devices are no longer for sale and many people have to change their smoking habits. For family members and friends staying with a smoker who can’t buy any cigarettes, it can be uncomfortable and unpleasant.”

Du Plooy advises being supportive and having snacks ready. Removing all lighters and ashtrays in the house can also be helpful as well as washing all clothes, curtains and carpets to get rid of the tobacco smell.

“Encourage the smoker to take it one day at a time. Do not tease the smoker about his/her situation and try small things such as putting up a sign at the front door that your house is a non-smoking one,” she advised.

Most importantly, she advises not taking the smoker’s grumpiness. “If the smoker decided to quit smoking, it is up to them to take full responsibility for their decision. Quitting smoking is a big deal. Celebrate every achievement and effort.”

Du Plooy notes the following withdrawal symptoms:


  • Increased appetite.

  • Craving a cigarette.

  • Coughing due to the respiratory system not being able to clean itself well when nicotine is around.

  • Headaches, dizziness, fatigue and constipation.

Mental, emotional and behavioural:

  • Anxiety.

  • Depression.

  • Irritability.

Originally appeared in the Review at

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