Quit Smoking - Why Is It Harder For Women Than Men?

By Lindsay M Fox

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 certainly
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 means 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
cannot get rid of it. They can use NRTs that mimic the
act of smoking; while nicotine patches won't 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.
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