A commonly stated fact is that women find it harder to quit cigarettes than men. Further, women smokers are unable to take advantage of certain smoking cessation therapies that are used by men to great effect. As a woman who is addicted to cigarettes, this is definitely bad news for you. Not only are you at greater risk than non-smokers to get certain cancers as well as heart or pulmonary diseases, but you are also more likely to suffer from osteoporosis as you age. If you are planning to have a child then you might experience a difficult pregnancy and your child might also have low birth weight.
An understanding of why women smokers have such a hard time quitting this habit will help you address your problem in the correct manner. This will ensure that you have a fighting chance of quitting this habit.
According to many scientific studies done on this subject, the main reason is that non-smoker women have the same number of nicotine receptors in their brain as women who smoke. It is believed that this has something to do with the progesterone levels in their body.
Fewer nicotine receptors mean that they might still have the urge to smoke even if the body is exposed to nicotine. The implication of this fact is that women tend to be unable to take advantage of nicotine replacement therapies (NRTs). Male smokers, on the other hand, have a lot more nicotine receptors in their brain than non-smoking men. Therefore, they can make good use of NRTs, and quit smoking easier than women.
Studies have also found that women tend to be more dependent on the physical actions associated with smoking. These include holding a cigarette in the hand or the lips and drawing on it.
Needless to say, this does not mean that women smokers should be resigned to their habit since they can not get rid of it. They can use NRTs that mimic the act of smoking; while nicotine patches will not work for them, electronic smoking devices might. Further, they can also practice yoga, meditation and any other exercise that involves deep and rhythmic breathing. This will definitely go a long way to help them quit smoking.
Now that you know what you are up against you can plan better to quit smoking. If you get the right kind of support then you'll find it relatively easy to quit this habit.