If you or someone you know is in crisis, contact the Military Crisis Line at 988 and press 1, or Text 838255. You can also call 911.

How Your Healthcare Provider Can Help You Quit Smoking

If you are ready to quit tobacco but are unsure how to get started, having a conversation with your healthcare provider (HCP) can be a great first step. They can help you get closer to living a tobacco-free life by sharing important information and resources with you. Keep reading to learn about some ways your healthcare provider can support you on your tobacco-free journey.

Prescribe Medicines to Help You Quit

There are different medicines available that can help you quit tobacco and they work in different ways. Your HCP can discuss these options with you and help you choose one that will work best for you based on your lifestyle, preferences and needs. Varenicline is an FDA-approved prescription drug that helps you quit tobacco by making tobacco use less pleasurable for your brain and reducing withdrawal symptoms. Bupropion is another FDA-approved prescription drug that works by reducing your cravings for tobacco.

If your HCP prescribes one of these medicines, they will give you instructions about the dose and when to start taking it. After 12 weeks, your HCP will help you decide if you should continue taking it for another 12 weeks. Most people don’t continue taking these medications longer than 24 weeks.

Please note, it is important to take these medications exactly as your HCP prescribes them.

Recommend Appropriate Nicotine Replacement Therapy

Nicotine replacement therapy (NRT) involves using products like gums, patches, lozenges, nasal sprays, and inhalers that deliver low doses of nicotine to help reduce your urge to use tobacco. Your HCP can help you figure out the best way to use these products. While nicotine patches, gum and lozenges can be purchased over the counter, you can get them for free if you are covered by TRICARE at your military treatment facility (MTF) pharmacy or through the TRICARE Pharmacy Home Delivery. More information on NRT is available here.

Share Quit Support Resources

Your HCP is also familiar with non-medication resources that can help you quit. They can help you find TRICARE-authorized tobacco cessation counseling services. These are services where you meet with an expert in quitting tobacco to figure out strategies that will help you quit for good. Your HCP may also be able to direct you to resources on or near your duty station or other services that can help you quit, like guides to making a quit plan or text messaging programs that can help you quit on your own time.

If you or someone you know is in crisis, contact the Military Crisis Line at 988 and press 1, or Text 838255. You can also call 911.