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How Can I Help My Teen Quit Smoking for Good?

My 18-year-old son quit smoking for a few weeks, but now he says he wants to go back to it. He says he's been under a lot of stress, having mood swings, and is a lot more fidgety. How can I convince him to change his mind?
Audrey

It's tough to quit smoking. Nicotine is addicting — and your son may be showing signs of withdrawal. He might want to get some nicotine gum or the nicotine patch so that he isn't having all those unpleasant symptoms. However, if he has quit for a few weeks, the symptoms should be lessening.

It's great that he has been interested in quitting — that is the most important step in the process. Keep encouraging him — but, ultimately, the decision to quit is his.

Reviewed by: Steven Dowshen, MD
Date reviewed: October 2009

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