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Women Have a Tougher Time Quitting Smoking But Greater Reasons to Keep Trying

        Health | Smoking Cessation

Harder for Women to Quit

As any smoker who has tried to kick the habit can testify, there's nothing easy about arresting this addiction that has a starring role in the high rate of deaths from lung cancer and heart disease.

What's more, a review of numerous research studies focusing on smoking cessation has concluded that while women may suffer greater relative risks of smoking-related diseases than do men, they tend to have more difficulty than men in quitting smoking. These research-based findings include the following trends:

  • Nicotine replacement therapy may not be as effective for women.
  • Women smokers are more fearful than men of gaining a lot of weight if they quit.
  • Medications to aid smoking cessation are not currently recommended for pregnant women.
  • A woman's menstrual cycle affects tobacco withdrawal symptoms, and responses to anti-smoking drugs may vary by cycle phase.
  • Husbands may provide less effective support to women who are trying to quit smoking than wives give to husbands.
  • Women may be more susceptible than men to environmental cues to smoking, such as smoking with specific friends or smoking associated with specific moods.
  • Many women may enjoy the feeling of control associated with smoking a cigarette.

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