The most effective way to quit smoking is with professional counselling to help break the smoking habit combined with stop-smoking medication to relieve the cravings for nicotine and withdrawal symptoms.

You can get professional help from your GP, pharmacist and some drug and alcohol counsellors. Free help is also available from Quitline on 137 848. Trained Quitline counsellors will give you support and advice over the phone.

Most smokers require repeated attempts before finally succeeding, so it is important to keep trying. Every attempt to quit is a learning experience. Try to work out why you weren’t successful and try something different next time. The only failure is to not keep trying.

Of course, some people are able to quit without any assistance (‘cold turkey’). However, most smokers have already discovered that this is rarely successful. Research clearly shows that using willpower alone is the least successful method of all for quitting smoking. Less than one in 20 ‘cold turkey’ quit attempts succeeds.

Two free smartphone apps can help you quit:

 My QuitBuddy provides a wide range of support and reminders and helps to improve motivation.
 The Quit for You-Quit for Two app is specifically designed for smokers who are pregnant.

Acupuncture and hypnotherapy are generally not recommended. While they may work for some people, the scientific evidence does not support their use.

It is important to be aware that smoking affects the levels of some drugs you may be taking, especially clozapine, olanzapine and warfarin. You should speak to your doctor before quitting if you are taking these drugs as you may need to reduce your dose. Other drugs which are affected by quitting smoking are listed here.