Almost two fifths of former smokers think the ban on smoking in public places helped them to quit, research shows.
The figures, released on the fifth anniversary of the smoking ban in public places in England, found that 37% of former smokers believe the ban helped them to kick the habit.
However, it is still estimated that 10 million people in the UK smoke, according to the research conducted by Pfizer.
A quarter of current smokers said they were happy to go outside to smoke whatever the weather, the research suggests.
One in five smokers who want to quit have sought medical help, the poll of 6,300 people found.
Take a look at these experts tips on how to quit smoking by hypnotherapist, Elle Dormer...
Five Ways To Quit Smoking
Battle the addiction with these top tips by hypnotherapist, <a href="www.elledormerhypnotherapy.co.uk" target="_hplink"><strong>Elle Dormer</strong></a>.
Close Your Eyes
"Close your eyes and take 3 deep breaths in and out. Now build a mental picture of yourself in the future as a non smoker. "Make it real by filling in the detail - where you are, what you're doing, who you're with and how much better you look and feel. This is known as future pacing. If you can imagine yourself having achieved your goal you a mentally a step closer to it."
Plan Your Escape
"Smokers often use cigarettes as a form of escapism. To have a break away from their desk after a stressful call. Or to provide thinking time when they are procrastinating. "Go for a brisk walk instead. Or to the kitchen to make a cup of tea. Any simple, familiar task that we can do without much thought allows us to simultaneously access our unconscious or 'zone out' which can be both relaxing and enable greater creative thought."
Imagine Other People's Disappointment
"Make a list of all the people (alive or dead) in your life who care for you - or have cared for you, like your friends, partner, parents or children. Then close your eyes and imagine them all together gathered in a room. "You are standing before them with a large beautifully gift wrapped box. This present represents you quitting smoking. Explain this to them in your mind. See or imagine their reactions. "Make them real. The relief, love, pride, appreciation. Then imagine asking for the gift back and how sad and disappointed they would be. And resolve that you cannot do this to the people you love."
"Cigarettes do not relax you. Nicotine is a stimulant so it is actually making you edgier and more stressed by elevating your heart rate and releasing stress hormones like adrenalin and cortisol into your blood stream. "Try an experiment: replace one of your regular cigarettes of the day with the following pattern of breathing. Breathe in for a count of 4 and out for a count of 8. Do this 10 x, consciously relaxing your body on every out breath. "This will physiologically de-stress you by slowing your heart rate and releasing endorphins. And prove to you you can truly relax yourself without a cigarette.
Use Your Imagination
"Take a moment somewhere quiet and close your eyes. Remember a time when you felt really confident, relaxed and in control. Take yourself back to that time, fill in the details and make it real. When you're feeling those emotions at their strongest, squeeze our thumb and forefinger together. "Clear your mind and repeat. Then practice recalling those helpful, positive emotions at points during the day by squeezing your thumb and forefinger together. The physical trigger should help to access those beneficial feelings that will help at moments of weakness."
The ban on smoking in public places in England came into effect on July 1 2007, spelling an end to drinkers having a cigarette with their pint in pubs, bars and clubs.
If you haven't managed to stub out the habit yet, take a look at these tips on quitting by Patrick Holford, a nutritional expert and author of How To Quit Without Feeling S**t:
- Balance your blood sugar levels by eating low GI foods. For an example of which foods are best, take a look here. (link to GI diet)
- In the first two weeks giving up, mix 8g of vitamin C with water and apple juice, as your immune system will start to kick in and this will strengthen your resistance to illness.
- Take 50mg of niacin (vitamin B3) twice a day with food as this will reduce those pesky nicotine cravings.
- If you have trouble sleeping due to the cigarette urges, take 100mg 5-HTP (a form of amino acid tryptophan) an hour before bed. This will help to naturally ease you to sleep.