Quit Your Way

How you quit may depend on whether you’ve tried to quit before and what you learned from that experience.

Quit your way

How you quit may depend on whether you’ve tried to quit before and what you learned from that experience.

Willpower or mental strength is an important part of the quitting journey. When applied to quitting smoking, willpower is the ability to talk yourself out of smoking and convince yourself into staying a non-smoker, especially when faced with a craving

For more information on willpower visit: https://www.icanquit.com.au/quitting-methods/willpower.

Cold turkey

Cold turkey is quitting smoking abruptly, without a gradual reduction in amount smoked. Most people who quit use the cold turkey method.

For more information visit: https://www.icanquit.com.au/quitting-methods/cold-turkey.

Cutting down

You may feel stopping smoking suddenly will be too hard – especially if you’re a really heavy smoker.

Cutting down and sticking to it can be hard too. There is the risk of falling back on old habits and there is always the temptation to have the cigarette instead of going without or using the gum.

But there are a number of ways to gradually reduce the number of cigarettes you smoke. These include:

  • smoking five cigarettes less every day until you aren’t smoking at all (count out how many you are allowed that day, and don’t smoke any more than that allowance)
  • delaying your first cigarette by an hour each day
  • using nicotine replacement therapy products like patches or gum/lozenges. These products give you some of the nicotine you would normally get from cigarettes so you feel much less like smoking. Another approach is to replace some of your cigarettes with a nicotine gum or lozenge, increasing replacements until you are not smoking at all.

While many people quit without any help, others are much more likely to succeed with a bit of assistance.

For more information visit: https://www.icanquit.com.au/quitting-methods/cut-down-to-quit

My QuitBuddy

My QuitBuddy is an app personalised to help you quit smoking on your terms. With My QuitBuddy, you can choose when to quit. You can use the app both if you’re ready to quit right now, or if you intend to quit smoking soon.

My QuitBuddy also allows you to program danger times for when you know a craving might strike. At danger times, My QuitBuddy provides a reminder of why you chose to quit, offers games to distract you or can connect you to the Quitline to make sure you stay quit.

Download My QuitBuddy on:


Telephone support – Quitline 13 78 48

Quitline is a confidential telephone advice and information service for people who want to quit smoking. A trained advisor can help you to plan and develop strategies to quit smoking and stay stopped.

Quitline can help you if you:

  • are thinking about quitting
  • are ready to quit
  • want to stay quit.

Call Quitline on 13 78 48 or request a call back.

Using medications to quit smoking

There are two types of medically-approved aids to quitting in Australia:

  • nicotine replacement therapy (NRT)
  • prescription medications designed to be used to stop smoking:
  • Champix (varenicline)
  • Zyban (bupropion).

Nicotine replacement therapy (NRT)

NRT is the collective name for a range of products containing small amounts of nicotine that are designed to help people stop smoking. These include nicotine gum, patches, inhaler and lozenges. These help smokers quit by replacing some of the nicotine they normally get from their cigarettes with nicotine absorbed through the skin (patches) or the lining of the mouth and gum (lozenges). This eases some of the nicotine withdrawal symptoms such as cravings and irritability.

Prescription medications designed to stop smoking

Champix (varenicline) and Zyban (bupropion) can help with physical withdrawal symptoms such as nicotine cravings. Talk to your doctor about the best option for you.

Note: No medication will work effectively unless you are committed to quitting.


Champix (also known as varenicline) reduces cravings and the negative effects of nicotine withdrawal. It works by blocking the effects of nicotine in the body. People using Champix often find they enjoy smoking a cigarette less and find smoking becomes distasteful.

For more information about Champix, visit www.quit.org.au/articles/quitting-medication-champix/


Zyban (also known as bupropion) affects areas of the brain that influence nicotine withdrawal. Using Zyban can help to reduce withdrawal symptoms when you quit, such as cravings, irritability, and difficulty concentrating. Zyban may also make smoking seem less rewarding.

For more information about Zyban, visit www.quit.org.au/articles/quitting-medication-zyban/

Help with cost of medication

Nicotine patches (NRT), Champix and Zyban are available on the Pharmaceutical Benefits Scheme (PBS) for all people wishing to quit smoking.

In order to get a script for either patches or Champix, you must see your doctor and seek assistance to quit by contacting either the Quitline or a similar support agency.

Talk to your doctor about options.

Support from your doctor or health professional

Many people decide to quit because the doctor has suggested it would be good for their health. Talk to your doctor or health professional about how smoking is affecting your health and how they can support you to quit.

Support from family and friends

Many people find their main support comes from family and friends. Ask them to support you, even when things get tough.

Support services for Aboriginal people

When you call Quitline on 13 78 48, if you identify as Aboriginal or Torres Strait Islander, you can choose to speak with an Aboriginal counselor.

You can also visit giveupsmokes.com.au – a campaign supporting Aboriginal people in South Australia to quit smoking and become healthier through simple actions like having smoke-free homes and cars.

Aboriginal community controlled primary health services and Watto Purrunna Aboriginal Primary Health Care Service also provide quit smoking support services.

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