THE shortlist; 10 WAYS TO GIVE UP SMOKING

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Hypnotherapy: Maureen Kay quickly pinpoints the reason why you smoke in a pre-trance chat, making hypnosis more effective. One-hour session costs pounds 120. Contact The Good Health Clinic, 182-186 Kensington Church St, London W8 (0171 221 2266), or call the National Council of Hypnotherapists (01590 683770) for a hypnotherapist near you.

Nicostop Anti-Smoking Programme: Latest "cure" from the United States includes a monitor and an anti-smoking tape. When you get cravings, just flick a switch to send electronic pulses to your earlobe via the rather ugly earpiece. pounds 39.95 and pounds 2 p&p from The Good Health Clinic (0171 221 2266).

Nicotine Gum: Almost as anti-social as smoking. Good if you're a 10- a-dayer, but seasoned addicts might need a more effective cure. Available from leading chemists at pounds 5.25 for pack of 30.

Nicotine Patches: Stick what look like plasters on your arm and the nicotine is absorbed through the skin, reducing the craving. Start on high-strength patches and work your way down. Try Boots own brand at pounds 163.80 for three months' treatment (cheaper than the evil weed - just).

Dummy Cigarette: Looks like the real thing wrapped in sellotape, good for smokers with an oral fixation but can be socially embarrassing. Mail order from The Everlasting Cigarette Company (01737 842728); pounds 3.50 each inc p&p.

Herbal Cigarettes: Get suspicious looks in the pub as the "unusual" aroma permeates the room. Menthol variety tastes less like pot pourri. NTB menthol cigarettes cost pounds 1.35 for 20, Honeyrose herbal are from pounds 1.50 for 20, from Holland & Barrett.

Acupuncture: Strengthens the lungs, mind and body against the trauma of giving up. After treatment, acupuncturist sticks a "seed" to your ear which you press when you want a cigarette. Good for hardened smokers. Call British Acupuncture Council (0181 964 0222) for your local practitioner.

The Smokers' Clinic: Run by clinical psychologist Gay Sutherland, the clinic offers inhalers, nasal sprays, patches, etc at reduced prices and is currently testing a cigarette that heats rather than burns tobacco. Treatment is free - it's all in the name of research. Contact the Maudsley Hospital, Denmark Hill, London SE5. (0171 919 2365).

Group Therapy: Sessions run for 8 weeks and help you examine at the reasons why you smoke. Good for en masse motivation or if you can't go cold turkey alone. For local courses call Quitline (0800 002200).

Cayte Williams

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