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What are Symptoms of Nicotine Withdrawal?

Tricia Christensen
Updated Mar 03, 2024
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Symptoms arising from nicotine withdrawal can be physical and psychological. In general, most people see a decrease in physical nicotine withdrawal symptoms about 72 hours after last use of nicotine. Psychological symptoms can continue for many months afterwards, which can often account for people beginning to use nicotine again.

The physical symptoms of nicotine withdrawal in the first three days include cravings. These cravings tend to last from three to five minutes, so it is possible to ride out a craving. Distracting one’s self from the craving by engaging in some kind of activity for a few minutes usually helps people get through a craving.

Those in nicotine withdrawal are frequently irritable, may have an exceptionally “short fuse,” and may find handling ordinary stressors quite difficult. People in nicotine withdrawal may also note difficulty concentrating and extreme fatigue. In fact, when possible, fatigue can be a friend rather than enemy. Taking naps is a great way to take a break from cravings. If possible, try to schedule smoking cessation when one has a few days of uninterrupted rest, as on a weekend.

Nicotine withdrawal can cause a number of cold or flu-like symptoms. Some people refer to these as smoker’s flu. This can include dry or sore throat, nasal congestion, coughing, and tightness in the chest. Some people have headaches, and some may suffer gastrointestinal symptoms like constipation, gas, or nausea during nicotine withdrawal. Others may note soreness of the tongue and/or gums.

While some undergoing nicotine withdrawal may experience fatigue and find sleeping quite easy, others may find it extremely difficult to sleep. Insomnia may be aided by a few days of low dose sleep medication. Getting sleep during nicotine withdrawal is important, since lack of sleep tends to dull one’s ability to resist cravings and may worsen mood.

Once through the physical symptoms of nicotine withdrawal, people may still experience psychological symptoms of withdrawal. These include still wanting a cigarette, or other tobacco products one has used in the past, feeling lost without one’s habitual smoking apparatus, and simply deeply missing smoking or chewing tobacco. Usually, wanting a cigarette after the body has completed nicotine withdrawal is not as urgent as the cravings one experiences during the first few days.

It helps to replace old smoking or chewing habits with new ones. Some people find comfort in chewing gum, munching on cigarette-sized carrots, or doing work with their hands, like crocheting, knitting, or woodworking. The former smoker who doesn’t replace old habits with new ones runs more of a risk of returning to smoking. He or she feels like something is “missing” from their lives, creating anxiety.

Persistence of depression, irritability, inability to control mood swings, sleeplessness or fatigue warrants a doctor’s visit. People often use nicotine to control their behavior, and nicotine can mask symptoms of mild psychiatric disorders like anxiety or depression. Many people find benefit in a short course of anti-depressants or anti-anxiety medications while overcoming the psychological symptoms of nicotine withdrawal.

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Tricia Christensen
By Tricia Christensen
With a Literature degree from Sonoma State University and years of experience as a The Health Board contributor, Tricia Christensen is based in Northern California and brings a wealth of knowledge and passion to her writing. Her wide-ranging interests include reading, writing, medicine, art, film, history, politics, ethics, and religion, all of which she incorporates into her informative articles. Tricia is currently working on her first novel.
Discussion Comments
By anon143822 — On Jan 17, 2011

I am on day 25 and I am hoping some people could let me know if this is normal. I am still having anxiety, mostly nightly.

I start feeling tense in the chest, sort of an internal unrest feeling. Then I start to panic and it takes some Xanax to calm me down.

Also, when I have been falling asleep, I will sleep well for the first four hours or so, then the last four hours, I awaken every 30-40 minutes checking the time. It's so strange and scary.

I have had a stress test, chest x ray, blood work, all proves to be normal. Let me know if this is normal and if the anxiety will lessen. I have no actual craving to smoke, but when things are loud or when something is intense like a movie or sports game, I can feel the anxiety coming on strongly.

By anon143676 — On Jan 17, 2011

What a fantastic website with courageous people, one and all. I read all the posts. I am on day 44, having quit cold turkey after smoking a pack a day for 28 years. I gave up at the end of a course of antibiotics for bronchitis and had a smoker’s cough for the six months prior and the worry of maybe having emphysema.

At the start, the improvement in my lung function carried me through the first week well enough as my bronchitis abated. Then I had a crippling bout of flu two days into the second week and the amount of gunk I got rid of was amazing. After this I felt most of the withdrawal was gone except for one very important one and that is an empty void in my life.

I believe Elizabeth below with her biologist friend about the withdrawal taking a year (Jackie H., hang in there you are doing remarkably well). We have all damaged our dopamine transmissions which are what control pleasure in our brains. We gave this control to Phillip Morris and nicotine and of course they overdosed it. Now this part of us needs to recover and without drugs we are temporarily like empty shells.

There is good advice below on how people have filled their time with hobbies to help get through this. I believe I have begun to see a slow turnaround and that the small, enjoyable, natural things in life have started to become more pleasurable. Things like taste and time with my children are now giving their pleasures naturally without the cigarette/dopamine pleasure control. I believe that slowly all natural life will take its rightful place in our minds and we can relax and enjoy things for what they are eventually. We just need to hang in there.

I hope this helps others as I have been helped by reading this marvelous site. My smokers cough is gone now and it’s just time to rebuild.

By Charles ALbert Fermalino — On Jan 16, 2011

this is my five months free from nicotine. I am still suffering from depression, panic, confusion, tightness of the chest, hyperventilation, lightheadedness/brain fog twice a week. All i have to do is take a lot of cranberry juice and multivitamins. have faith of course. hang in there and the symptoms will subside. remember, nicotine withdrawal is a long process; it takes months or a year.

By JackieH — On Jan 16, 2011

Day 49 here too. One good thing - I slept for 10 hours straight last night, my first night of sleep in 48 days. Maybe some of the toxins really did run off yesterday. As to your theory of toxins hanging around, Jason, I am convinced that they are still there at both simple body and more complex cellular levels. Yes, still stuck in the darkest recesses of our lungs, but other places too.

Apparently the best way to get rid of these residual toxins is to improve blood circulation. I'm trying, but it's not exactly the most perfect moment to head out for long walks in the woods (still below 0 here most days). Sometimes I run up and down the stairs in the middle of the night. The husband loves that.

I'm also trying to drink loads of pure cranberry juice with water in the hopes of flushing any residual toxins out. None of it provides the miracle I'm looking for, but everything is worth a try right?

And hey, tomorrow is Day 50. I always said that I thought it would take 100 days to full recovery from the withdrawal (not 72 hours like the cheery little quit pamphlets say, the ones that are clearly written by non-smokers), so that means we've hit the halfway mark. I'm pretty pleased with that given that I once thought they'd have to throw my last pack of Marlboro lights and a diet coke in the coffin with me.

The next big thing for me, once I'm physically right again, is the psychological part of the equation. I'm so used to being the one outside smoking at every event. I made many of my friends that way! What now? Discussions about how gross smoking is over the buffet. Aaaah.

It's okay though. I won't relapse, because I have some truly horrendous memories of this quit to keep me strong. My favorite being the time that I had to stand next to the toilet the whole flight from Edinburgh to Amsterdam because if I sat in my chair my arms and legs would twitch involuntarily and fly out at the people sitting either side of me.

It has been such a bizarre experience, this quitting business! Unbearable, unforgettable.

Keep strong everyone, especially those in pain. Laugh when you can, cry like a baby when you can't, and forgive yourself absolutely everything.

By anon143336 — On Jan 15, 2011

Jackie, me too. I experienced them all yesterday, as if i just quit just two days ago for about two hours and gone for a while. Maybe our bodies after one month are surrendering from the fact that they can't expect nicotine intake anymore.

Maybe some of the nicotine stays a long time in our bodies and they are expecting nicotine after a month but it's failing so they have the final two months to go out of our bodies.

every day after i wake up, i normally coughed out some crap of phlegm so it's a sign that my body is still detoxifying and there are still toxins in my body. I'm on my day 49 now. -Jason

By JackieH — On Jan 15, 2011

Thanks Jason. I hope you're right about everything slowly lessening. Today was one of crazy relapse for me. I had everything: chills, shakes, jitters, bloat, shortness of breath. It's like I stopped yesterday.

No idea why, but I'm hoping it's just a last little hurrah for the toxins and tomorrow I'll wake up having gone over the (good) edge. My husband says my experiences are abnormally severe, but my doctor says that this happens to a lot of people. Phillip Morris has a lot to answer for!

By anon142969 — On Jan 14, 2011

this site is fantastic! I'm day 57 and have had two short flu or cold like days since day one. Both times i got most of the symptoms you are all talking about, but day to day has been pretty sweet, i put that down to exercise, i have been swimming or running most every day since i stopped and i truly believe it helps the process.

I know it's hard to start exercising if you haven't done it in years but hey, if you can stop smoking, you can sure as hell start exercising. The side effects are miles more beneficial than you can even imagine. That's my top tip, take it or leave it. Luck love and light to you all!

By anon142430 — On Jan 13, 2011

To 568 and 574: Don't worry guys, you're not alone. I'm also on my day 46 and still experiencing the hot flashes sometimes, cold chills, cold sweats, body pains, chest pains and neck pains, but they are tolerable now unlike in the first two weeks.

I'm just keeping myself busy if i feel them.

At least every day or every other day, we feel better and we just think of it as a sign of progress in removing the toxins from our body and the healing process also. Be strong guys and more power. Hope to read more of your comments soon. --Jasson

By JackieH — On Jan 12, 2011

I know exactly how you feel 574. After a great day (Day 45) where I even did twenty minutes on the treadmill and cooked and ate a healthy meal, here I am, 4.45 am, sitting on the computer, wide awake with a twitchy leg. I really miss my sleep!

By anon142243 — On Jan 12, 2011

My previous posts were 497 and 519. I am currently at day 52. I am feeling much better most of the time, but I still have days where it seems like I'm going backward and the symptoms return.

I still experience the tightness in my chest, although not every day. Also, my nasal passages feel swollen. So I get anxious about the breathing difficulty and it gets worse. When I make a serious effort to relax it goes away. Weird. Also, still not sleeping at night. I'm getting used to that, too. Stressing about it only makes it worse. There is some weird stuff on TV in the middle of the night!

I'm determined to ride it out. As bad as I feel some days, it's still better than when I was smoking.

By anon142001 — On Jan 11, 2011

I was post 567. Almost done with the tenth day. I was real irritable on day six, to the point where I thought I was going to explode. Day seven was better and a strange thing happened in the evening.

I was working out and I just felt great, better than I have in ten years. I wasn't huffing and puffing after leg work and a really positive feeling washed over me. I am not a touchy-feely, spiritual type and any of that talk makes me uncomfortable but it was a feeling that said 'it's over.'

The two days since have been great. I have about three or four small cravings that I can push aside and had about two mid-sized cravings that lasted for 30 minutes, but they are manageable and I look forward to beating them.

I can't really explain this, but I do not want to smoke. When I get a craving, even though it is a craving for a smoke, it's more like I need to get up and do something until this passes – if that makes any sense. I do not think I am out of the woods yet, but I feel good and have no desire to smoke.

I used several methods to get through the first 10 days: Chantix, Allen Carr's book and educating myself on the internet. I also talked to a lot of ex-smokers I know (didn't everyone smoke at one time) and journaled my cravings (to look at periodically so I don't get lax and think a few months from now that I can have a drag). I'll post again in a week.

I found it really helpful to see how others progressed and it gave me light at the end of the tunnel reading about people who were farther along than I, but went through some of the same things. Best wishes to everyone!

By anon141727 — On Jan 11, 2011

Everyone, keep up the good work. it will go away. The three month mark is when they start going away. They crop up but are not nearly as intense. I was told to figure one month for every year smoked for the body to heal. So be patient and let the body heal. Blessings to all.

By JackieH — On Jan 11, 2011

Nights are by a mile the worst for me too. So many long hours not asleep. I now have a very long Ipod playlist called "All through the night." It is soothing when sleep is hopeless but I have a feeling that I'm going to hate all those songs once I'm over the nighttime weirdness.

I want to forget all about this freaky period a.s.a.p. Day 44 today! Surely I must be starting to crawl out of the hole.

By anon141585 — On Jan 10, 2011

i have been having odd symptoms like shortness of breath, pain in lungs and some higher blood pressure readings.

By ddiemert — On Jan 10, 2011

Cold sweats in freezing rain recently. A very odd feeling. Completing my third full day now. The worst part was breaking my routine at work. Smoke breaks etc. This is just the first work day of many to come. Urges are not too bad and the juice has helped. Orange as I cannot stand cranberry.

It is the night sweats, cold sweats mixed with hot and cold flashes that bothers me.

I may be sleeping better and lighter - more REM sleep but mentally I have been in bed 60 percent of the time so far and feel exhausted. Walking has helped a lot. Especially in the chilly air.

I appreciate the thoughts I have read from others. I hope its easier by the end of week three. Good luck to all.

By JackieH — On Jan 10, 2011

Day 43. My doctor says I'm doing great, but I still feel gross. Out of shape, twitchy, anxious. But hey, anyone on this forum knows that withdrawal symptoms last months, not days. I've even got a couple of new ones: itchy crawly skin and my skin going black wherever it is in contact with gold jewelry. Very bizarre indeed, but I'm getting used to bizarre. Hang in there all, the symptoms do lessen over time, that I know for sure.

By anon140987 — On Jan 09, 2011

I'm on day five. Things are starting to get a little better.

Before I start, I did not know anything about nicotine withdrawal when deciding to quit cold turkey. Sure i figured that i would have the desire to smoke but nothing more. Wow! Was I in for a big surprise! Day 1 landed me in the hospital with chest pains, dizziness, cold sweats. I called my family doctor and he told me to go directly to the ER. He said it sounded as if I was having a heart attack. I was scared out of my mind! I had an EKG, chest x ray, blood work and a second EKG -- all were normal. After five hours they sent me home with what they thought was acid reflux. I went home and the chest pain and dizziness didn't stop. I felt so sick while lying in bed with my wife, I told her that I was going back to the ER. They did another EKG and everything looked normal. I thought I was going crazy.

Went back home and tried to go to sleep. I woke every hour on the hour. I was like, "What the hell is happening to me?" Day number two was not much better, except that I was able to function enough to make it to my family doctor. He gave me another EKG which came back normal. Now I'm really thinking that I'm crazy. I'm feeling like crap! I have chest pains, I'm short of breath, dizzy, extremely tired! Why can't they see what I'm trying to tell them?

Went home and eventually gathered enough energy to go to the grocery store with my wife. Walking around the grocery store made my chest feel like I had just run a marathon. I was weak, my legs and arms felt numb, I was scared. The next morning I started researching nicotine withdrawal symptoms, Wow! was i blown away! Fine! I'm not crazy! Yay!

I was finally able to make it to work with no repercussions. I was tired but OK. Yesterday was good with no incident until the evening. Had a rush of nausea accompanied with the shivers.

This website is unbelievable! Thanks for all the help and support!

By anon140525 — On Jan 07, 2011

I'm on day five and have appreciated the reading others' experiences with quitting so I'll add mine. This may be a long one as I am using this typing to get through a fairly major crave. I have smoked for 26 years. The worst years were 2 packs a day and the best were 12-14 cigs a day. I did quit for 2 years using zyban and for a 2-3 months a few times on the patch. My previous "quit" was last August on the patch, nicotine gum and cigarettes. I had 3 whole days where I did not smoke at least one cig while on the patch.

I tracked my nicotine intake during the time and when I reduced the patch mg, the number of cigs or nic gums went up. I always felt crappy and had a cold for 6 weeks. In december I had enough and went back to full time smoking until I saw a friends son take up smoking because his dad smoked. I did not want to leave this legacy for my own children. Cold turkey quits were a nightmare and zyban did not do a thing for me the 2nd time so I figured I'd try chantix. No major side effects from it other than vivid dreams but they started to fade on day 14. I was still smoking on the Chantix so I read Allen Carr's book and just quit. The book made every argument I had about smoking (i.e. stress relief) go away and re-framed my mind set. smoking is really about getting rid of the withdrawal so I could deal with the stressor. Smoking also wasn't relaxing, I couldn't relax until I got rid of the withdrawal, etc.

So how have the first five days been on Chantix and from reading the book? Oh horrible. The chantix has not made the withdrawals any better than when I quit cold turkey. Day one was so so, dizzy and lethargic and hard craves would come in waves. They are supposed to only last 3-4 minutes but they were 45 - 60 minutes in length (I timed a couple after awhile). I had about 6 or 7 of these.

Between hard craves was a constant nagging feeling but the Carr book helped me stay positive. Day 2 was worse, the hard craves still came in waves and were about as long. The dizziness really increased and I stumbled through the day in a fog. Day three was the absolute worst, the hard craves were not quite as bad but my temper flared up. In the evening the hard craves really kicked in. I used the techniques in Carr's book to get through it, stayed positive and beat the crap out of an inanimate object. Day four was the best, I had small craves but nothing major and felt real positive. Still was really dizzy. When I had a crave, the dizziness would increase. The craves were set off by triggers when I saw or did things were I used to smoke.

So day 5 is different than the rest of the days but worse. Most of the day has been a small crave that does not go away. Previous days, the craves were like being in a fist fight, today it's like being in an endurance race until I got home from work (it's a Friday) and I was booted with a tremendous crave (Usually I have 2-3 after work on fridays before supper to relax and put the work week behind). I've been reading hear all week so I figured, I'll type my experience to get over this one,

Overall, symptoms have been dizziness, temper at times and strong cravings. I feel like I am in a continual fog most of the day as well and can't stay on task for much. I think about smoking all the time and can't stop. I have been sleeping well, no nausea, etc. I do feel fatigued at times but make myself do something physical (I play a lot of sports and lift weights).

I will get through this and for some reason this time, I know I will never smoke another cig again.

By JackieH — On Jan 07, 2011

Cold chill shakes, ah yes, those lovely old friends. They will lessen over time and telling yourself so forcefully in the middle of a shivering attack does help.

Accept the horrible experience as part of the process but say to yourself: this is temporary, this is a classic withdrawal symptom, this will end. And let yourself shake, it's doing no harm, just making you act and feel like a heroin addict. Hang on in there; it's a sign that the poison is leaving your body.

By anon140233 — On Jan 06, 2011

Both my wife and I are on day six. I was a pack a day smoker for over 40 years while my wife was about 3/4 pack a day. We both went on the patch, step one. This is the first day I have not found myself reaching for a cigarette, but for the last two days, especially today, I have been having cold chill shakes. Any suggestions on how to overcome this?

By JackieH — On Jan 06, 2011

Day 39 and still experiencing panic, twitches and insomnia. Oh yes, and still got a huge pregnant bloated belly and can't fit any of my clothes so hanging around in sweats the whole time. Also I hate showering because it makes my skin crawl afterward, so not washing and drying my hair every day like usual.

And I speak in tongues in my sleep, although thankfully, I have stopped trying to actually bite my tongue off like I did in the beginning. This has to be the weirdest experience of my entire life - one I hope never to repeat.

I'm kind of getting used to the horrors, though. I no longer think OMG what's happening to me, I think, aaagh, here we go again. Somehow this is a subtle but important shift. I think that reading all these posts has helped me get the whole experience into perspective.

I don't just think so much about me, me, and my symptoms, but more about the broader context of all of us groaning and moaning our way through a very challenging experience. I feel kinder towards the world and more philosophical about things. Very bizarre, but better than wasting my mental energy thinking I'm dying of right leg twitch.

Hang in there everyone. As a group, we seem to be doing well. I hear a lot of tense and worried voices (mine included) but nobody on their way back to the devil nicotine. That's really something right? That's some kind of success.

By the way, did I ever mention that this is the first online conversation I've ever joined in my life. No Facebook, none of that stuff. Before quitting I was a sociable person who didn't like the idea of talking to strangers online when I could be out and about (smoking - I live in Amsterdam) with friends. So a special thank you to everyone who contributes to this website - it's made a huge difference to me in this challenging period. Without it I'd probably be lying in bed in a delirious Xanax coma the whole time, but with it, I just hang on by my fingertips. Cheers all.

By anon139880 — On Jan 06, 2011

I am on day 13 of quitting cigs cold turkey. I smoked for 13 years about a pack a day or a little more. I too have been experiencing the lightheadedness that makes you feel as though you are going to pass out. Normally it lasts a couple hours then resides for me daily. I work as a CT Tech and have access to the ER so I check my vitals and blood sugar and everything is OK.

My biggest concern I have is this constant tightness at my sternum area. Also I cannot do anything that gets my adrenaline going because it feels as though I am about to have an anxiety attack.

The doctor gave me 0.25 Xanax but I don't want to take too many pills so I have only taken five to help to get to bed. I have no craving to smoke at all.

The doctor also gave me lexapro, but I am not depressed, just concerned over the chest pains. Any advice for this, am I having normal symptoms. My troponin is good, x ray neg, so no heart attack or tumors. Just weird pains once in awhile lasting a few seconds near my left and right breast, not simultaneously though. Also a constant external pressure that comes and goes. Thanks for the help.

By anon139793 — On Jan 05, 2011

Today marks 128 days for me. I had a panic attack while I was at work today. It scared me. For the last week and a half, I have been juicing which seemed to give me more energy.

Last night I pigged out on candy and junk food and had a large cup of coffee for breakfast today. I'm just getting over a head cold and now it seems like its may be starting all over the glands in my throat feel swollen and it hurts to swallow.

I was talking to a co-worker of mine today who was a three pack per day smoker and he said it took him four to six months to feel normal again after he quit. I went to the doctor yesterday for a regular checkup and she's going to mail my results to me, so I'm hoping everything is OK.

I'm just rambling on and on and on. Bottom line is, I just want to feel normal again. I thought I was in the clear but it just seems that when you're feeling better, a symptom crops up and knocks you back on your behind. Well, I'll be back in another few days for update and thanks to everyone for sharing their stories.

By anon139682 — On Jan 05, 2011

I am on week 11. Everyone hang in there. I wish I could say which was the worst, memory, dizziness, panic attacks, hyperventilating, walking funny, tingling on the head and face or the flu like symptoms, but it all went away. drink plenty of water, walk as much as you can. God bless us all.

By JackieH — On Jan 05, 2011

Day 38. It feels good to be able to write that, especially as nobody thought I would make it past day eight. Anyway, mostly this whole process makes me want to scream, cry, and start smoking again immediately, but sometimes it makes me laugh, and being able to laugh helps me see the light at the end of the long dark tunnel.

Last night, after thrashing around sleepless and desperate for hours as usual, I decided to try one of the more unusual tips I have been given -- which is how my husband (now relegated to the spare room because he can't bear my nightly delirium) came to wander into the bathroom and find me sitting on the toilet with my feet soaking in a tub of hot soapy water. The look on his face was priceless.

My other beautiful new habit is woo-hooing like an owl. My friend told me that flapping her arms like a bird and screaming really helped her, but I live in a built-up city with neighbours all ]around, so that won't work for me. Instead I just "woooooooo."

Speaking of which, poor old Tiff, your symptoms sound horrible, but I felt better for hearing about them. Thanks for sharing. Like I said previously, hearing other people's hell stories has been keeping me sane.

By anon139533 — On Jan 04, 2011

I am so happy to have found this site. I am on day 23 and thought by now all the physical withdrawal symptoms would be gone, but I was so wrong. Seems like everyone has their own mix of symptoms. The worst for me are severe dizziness 1 - 20 times a day, confusion, memory issues, difficulty concentrating/focusing, nausea, gas, and the occasional chest pain. It's almost like being a little drunk for me, without the fun laughy part.

By anon139456 — On Jan 04, 2011

I'm just starting today: day one. Like everyone else, I'm aware of the negative physical effects of smoking, and am hoping to experience a healthier body in the future. What I've notice, though (something which not many talk about), is the moral and spiritual effects of regular smoking.

One of the biggest problems I see in my own life is the way in which smoking reduces my clarity of thought. As soon as I start up after quitting, or even increase the number of cigs I smoke, I find that my mind loses its sharpness--its ability to perceive reality, to think logically, to intuit things, to argue, analyze situations and problems.

I have also discovered that smoking prevents me from living in the present. Because I always use the next cigarette in the future to help me get through the present, I am always only half in the present (maybe less), and half in the future. In some weird sense, I am never existing in actuality, since I am never living in the now.

These are only a few of the moral and spiritual effects of smoking, but there are so many more. In many ways, I find these effects much more detrimental to ourselves than the physical. Our society is so focused on the body, the physical, the sensual, that we forget our minds, souls, and spirits are so much more important. In discussion forums such as these, we shouldn't shy away from talking about these things.

By comr4d — On Jan 04, 2011

I was 480 and 496. It's day 61 here. Things are like a rollercoaster, but I have been having more good days lately. The holidays were rough. People knew I wasn't myself. Aches in my back, shoulders and neck were the worst along with anxiety. I still have a little of all of it. Praying that this is all a memory in the coming weeks. God Bless

By anon139325 — On Jan 04, 2011

One day at a time. Life is good, quit telling yourself it isn't.

By JackieH — On Jan 04, 2011

Well 548, I'm glad you've had it so easy but it seems very unfair to say that the rest of us are pretty much imagining it. That is just way wrong.

My doctor told me that he himself had symptoms for three to four months after quitting. Most of our bodies are in a state of extreme shock (albeit good for us in the long run). Please don't demean our experiences - there must be other forums for people who are having a great time quitting and wish to brag about that to those of us who are going through hell (in our heads).

Most of us here want to discuss the challenges of quitting and help each other to understand that we are not going insane, just going through withdrawal. It's very real to me!

By JackieH — On Jan 04, 2011

Thanks everyone for the posts - they keep me going, they really do. Last night for the first time in 40 days, I got four or five hours sleep. Xanax (just enough to cut the anxiety, 0.25) helped but the main thing was that I slept with my Ipod on.

Just very low-key music but it seemed to keep the delirium at bay. Sure, music is a bit distracting, but a whole lot nicer that listening to your legs twitch in the silence, or your head buzz or whatever else your symptom de jour is. My God this is hell.

By tiff1994 — On Jan 03, 2011

Welcome to my nightmare. I discovered this site when I was searching for true nicotine withdrawal symptoms. I read every one of the posts -- twice. I haven't smoked in 53 days, and it's been the last thing on my mind. I was all too concerned with the nightmarish symptoms that I was having.

I kept asking doctors if I could have stirred up all this he** by attempting to quit, failing, then quitting again. All said no. OK, then explain the extreme pain that I woke up with in my sternum, the puddles of sweat on my chest in the middle of the night, muscle, twitches, spasms, severe memory issues, no concentration, insomnia.

My attempt to quit came from a two-month ear/throat issue (which by the way was a symptom of anxiety). I had blood work, ultrasound of my thyroid, CT of my neck and lungs, EEG, MRI of my brain and cognitive testing. I even spent money on a homeopathic doctor who couldn't explain squat.

I had the burning sensation (that I repeatedly described as a menthol feeling like Vick's) that would seem to run across my head, and down all my limbs. Felt like sunburn under my skin. I had to give up sugar because it would make me high (probably because of severe anxiety). I haven't done squat in almost two months because it was downright debilitating.

I had visions suddenly appear that would scare the heck out of me. I had massage therapy which seemed to finally wake me up just three days ago. It was like this was suddenly draining out of me. I ended up taking Wellbutrin because I had a six week wait for a visit with a psychiatrist due to the suicidal visions (no not my desire at all, just scared me to death). Filled an old Rx for Xanax 0.25 that seems to help, but I 'm so stubborn that I barely take them. I hate pills. I didn't give up smoking chemicals just to put more chemicals and addictions into my body.

I thought I was dying, and I warned my husband to be prepared because something was seriously wrong. I quit 53 days ago, found this site three or four days ago. Wish someone would have prepared me for this nightmare in advance, because I would have considered another quitting method. Problem was, I wanted to quit *now*, not two weeks into a medication. I had to do it while i was motivated.

My skin has peeled, lips have peeled, acne, deodorant seems almost useless. I've lost 10 pounds in fear of eating sugar. Absolute nightmare!

By anon139091 — On Jan 03, 2011

I am on day seven, quitting cold turkey from a 12-year 30-per-day habit.

It's been easy, almost laughably so, considering how much I psyched myself up to do it. A couple of pangs on day three, lasting about five minutes total.

My tip? I bought some nicotine gum, which I kept there in case of "emergencies." I didn't want to use it unless necessary.

Knowing it was there removed a lot of the "panic" I'd had on previous attempts to stop. But what I've found is, once the panic isn't there, neither are these physical symptoms everyone is going on about.

After a couple of days, the nicotine is metabolized. The rest is in your mind. Doesn't make it any more pleasant, I know. But understand: it's in your mind. When you find your way around that, like me and my gum, it'll be easy.

By anon138986 — On Jan 03, 2011

I quit smoking after 30 years/pack a day, three days ago and have severe dizziness and fatigue. I have no desire to smoke and can barely hold my eyes open. I have quit before with really no side effects so this comes as a surprise. I always did cold turkey so this time I tried gum. Could it be the 2mg gum? I went with the least amount of nicotine.

By anon138883 — On Jan 03, 2011

Guys, hang on! I'm on my day 37 now and still experiencing hot flashes and warm legs and hands. these are all part of the process of quitting from smoking. Just be patient. I know it's hard, but we have to be patient. Don't counter the symptoms with other vices such as drinking alcohol or other dangerous medications. These are all normal symptoms. Just eat plenty of fruit, drink pure fruit juices, plenty of water and increase your daily dosage of vitamin c and multivitamins.

Avoid also places where there are people who are smoking or tell your friends who are smoking not to smoke while talking with you. Take a walk in the bay or along the beach if you feel hot flashes or palpitations to ease you out. Keep yourselves busy. Clean your closet or room, arrange your things, watch movies or talk to friends. All these will help you not to mind too much of the physical symptoms. Happy new year to all! --Jason

By anon138854 — On Jan 02, 2011

This is my first post to this site. I am on day seven of no smoking. I had to quit after 22 years of a pack a day due to a severe respiratory infection.

I still can't breathe right. I had a chest X Ray and the doctor said it was complications from smoking. All I can say is that after seven days I am a total lunatic and I feel sorry for my husband and children for having to be in the same room with me.

By anon138826 — On Jan 02, 2011

Has anyone suspected that the "speed bump" that makes the cigarettes "fireproof"? I quit with the suspicion that it was causing an assortment of problems for me.

By anon138757 — On Jan 02, 2011

Happy new year to all fellow quitters! It's my third month right now. Still experiencing anxiety and drinking just makes it worse. When I am drinking without smoking I tend to black out and the hangovers last like three days. Depression hasn't gone away either. I had no idea it could take this long for body to adjust after quitting.

By anon138755 — On Jan 02, 2011

This is 523. It has been two months now, and not getting any break yet for me, just one thing led to the other.

To JackieH: I am still dealing with losing my appetite. I am starting to eat some food now, but not the same way before quitting smoking. I have been prescribed meds to battle the anxiety (Alprazolam) and I think it's this medication that probably made me lose interest in food. I am also dealing with anxiety, which very painful. I still have a hot, jittery flush that feels like an electric shock coming from my body all the way to my head. It makes my back skin become sensitive or burn. I am also trying to get of off meds because this drug is so addictive.

Any of you all know how to deal with anxiety without meds? Oh, by the way. My entire body is painful. How can I get relief from this? I still have mild flu like symptoms. Anyway, Happy New Year to everybody out there, especially Jackie.

By JackieH — On Jan 01, 2011

Happy New Year to the rest of you out there in quitting hell. Today is day 35 for me and I still feel absolutely foul. It's probably mostly anxiety but that anxiety manifests itself as insomnia, twitchy legs, bloat and breathlessness. I drank too much wine last night to stay calm and that just led to another sleepless night and nervous day. When is this going to end?

By JackieH — On Dec 29, 2010

I too am on Day 31. I'm just assuming that anything and everything is "normal" and I'll just discuss the very worst bits at my two-weekly doc appointments.

Not only do I have muscle aches, it feels like I have muscle atrophy. Takes me ages to do the smallest things. A shower is an hour. I am also in a perpetual fog.

One good thing though: I can sleep in any position now. Two weeks ago I couldn't lie down or rest on my back. So there are small positives in amongst all the freaky negatives. Hang in there. Although it feels quite the opposite, the body is getting better every day.

By anon137771 — On Dec 29, 2010

You don't say whether or not you're still on the patch - perhaps it's related to that. Those nicotine patches always made me feel really strange. Maybe ask your doctor about getting rid of the patch or lowering the dose. Half the stories here are about people struggling to get off NRT after years, so it's not nothing. Good luck.

By anon137719 — On Dec 28, 2010

I'm so glad to have found this website.

I quit smoking about five weeks ago using the patch and it was relatively symptom free after the first three weeks. Then, two weeks ago at day 30 I woke up with debilitating vertigo (the sensation of the room spinning and balance issues). It was relatively minor the first week then I woke up for work and was completely incapacitated. Couldn't drive or even walk straight. I went to urgent care and they said to ride it out after doing a full exam and performing CTs on my head, but it's not getting any better.

Has anyone experienced this? I've been fortunate to have taken vacation for two weeks, but time is running out and I'm not getting any better. This is making my life miserable and will potentially impact my job because I can't get to it.

Out of desperation, I tried a cigarette to see if this was a symptom of withdrawal and the vertigo all but disappeared. I'm not going to start smoking again, but this is alarming. Any idea how long this may last or remedies? Help!

By anon137683 — On Dec 28, 2010

I'm glad i have found this site. I'm on day 31, and the symptoms are still there but not as severe during my first two weeks. Recently my heart is palpitating so fast it's like I'm having a heart attack. my neck is kind of aching with some cramps in my legs and hands, and my body aches everywhere especially on the left side of my body. are these normal?

By Nolean — On Dec 28, 2010

Today is day 120 for me. I'm still dealing with the anxiety and scared of having more chest pains. one thing I forgot to mention is that I see changes in my female cycle. i never had cramps before and now I have them and my cycle has gotten heavier. Hope this isn't tmi, but just thought I'd share. Smoking affects everything in your body. Happy Holidays, all.

By anon137646 — On Dec 28, 2010

Writing here to state I am one year off ciggies. had a few nicotine withdrawal symptoms. all are stated here and it was nearly six months before i stopped thinking of ciggies. i play cricket and when smoking i could manage five or six overs before i huffed and puffed. In seven months, i surprised myself by bowling 20 overs non stop (i used to be fit when younger, am 36 and was gym fit until 25).

i read a lot of experiences here in my first few months and it certainly helped. please don't give up. It's great on the other side!

By JackieH — On Dec 28, 2010

Poor you, 522, you sound miserable. Remember that anxiety can cause virtually every symptom imaginable. The glare is probably just a symptom, but you sound so bad you should check in with your doctor.

Also, how about joining a quitting program, pronto, where you'll get more social support? You sound like you're feeling very alone in all this and really could use a physical support network.

By JackieH — On Dec 28, 2010

Well that was one long Christmas! The only good thing about it was the people, of course, although I barely spoke to anyone, and the fact that I felt too gross to overeat.

Under all this fluid retention is a thinner me waiting to burst forth -- eventually. Yes, 523, no appetite is part of the deal for some. You've probably got a stomach full of pus and mucus, so no room for food. Or maybe quitter's diarrhea, which puts you off eating too. The charming, lesser-discussed symptoms --eh.

It's now day 31 and I still have some version of all symptoms, though they are lessening. Nights are the worst. I have flailing and wailing even when I've taken a sleeping tablet. I am also very antisocial at the moment - won't go out, cancel things, don't answer texts or emails or anything. I figure I can fix all that when I'm well again.

I just canceled New Year's Eve plans with friends, which is tough on my husband - but I am just not up for it. All I want to talk about is quitting. All I want to do is slob around evaluating my symptoms. I feel like a different, rather gross, person, not someone who goes out and enjoys NYE with friends.

I did speak with a friend who gave up smoking two years ago and still feels symptoms every now and again! Freaked me out but I'm still determined. I want to feel clean and fresh and ready to swim across a big blue lagoon one day soon.

Stick to it guys: we are so far ahead of all those New Year's quitters who are about to join us in nicotine-free hell!

By anon137285 — On Dec 27, 2010

I was post 480 and 496. I am on week seven of no nicotine after 16 years of various nicotine additions. It is better, but not much. My main problems have been anxiety, fatigue and body aches. Like others have said, its a different ache each day. Back, neck, arms, knees, shoulders etc.

This is some powerful stuff. This site has helped my sanity. Thank you all for sharing. Hopefully we can compare notes months from now rejoicing in our successes. God bless.

By Bryan Jacobosky — On Dec 27, 2010

i looked this up, as i do for like everything, and i can't find too much on my eye, and those symptoms. I see a glare almost all day, on everything! It is so much brighter and i hate it. I keep thinking I'm going blind. Please help. I am also 522.

By Charles ALbert Fermalino — On Dec 25, 2010

i ate any variety of raw foods, drink plenty of cranberry juice, jogging 45 minutes a day, take a multivitamin B complex, warm water 16 glasses a day and milk before bed. guess what? my anxiety and depression and even the lightheadedness have disappeared. I'm on four months free from nicotine, without any replacement. Of course, have faith in God.

By anon136963 — On Dec 25, 2010

I quit smoking about 2.5 months ago and recently I started having lightheadedness and spells of dizziness without any cause. Feel anxious and depressed also.

I had this belief from everyone who told me that quitting was not so hard and withdrawal symptoms are mild and pass away real quick. What a load of crap! Calms me down that I am not the only one who experiences symptoms like this. Great source of info!

By anon136893 — On Dec 24, 2010

@post 519: I have had/having the same thing. I can go four or five days feeling great, thinking it's all behind and then bam! Back to nearly square one. It really is two steps forward one step back. In the big picture I'm slowly getting better all the time. As everyone says, Hang in there! --Mark

By anon136807 — On Dec 24, 2010

OK, this has been week number eight now for me. I am still dealing with the physical symptoms. Not all of them, but some of them are here with me like body aches, headache, difficulty breathing, especially at bed time, very tired, sweating and hot flashes at night.

One symptom that no one never mentioned is that you cannot eat. I've lost 10 pounds so far. They said that after you stop smoking, you gain weight, and you will start to eat more, because the food will taste good. But for me, I've hardly eaten anything for the last seven and half weeks.

Does anybody out there have the same symptoms as I do. If there is, is this part of nicotine withdrawal too? How long will it be before I get hungry again?. I am 49 years old male, have been smoked over 30 years.

For the past seven weeks, I spent my time in and out of the doctor's offices almost every day. They did all kind of tests, and the results are coming back OK, but I'm not. To me, it seems like every day something else always come up.

Any one of the ex-smokers out there who have been smoking as long as I did and successfully quit have been the same situation as I am? If there is, how long will these symptoms last? Thank you for any comments. Sansad.

By Bryan Jacobosky — On Dec 24, 2010

Where do i start? I'm 24 male and had anxiety maybe three times a year, so i always had a couple Valiums. About a month ago i have had a bad attack that landed me in the ER.

i have taken one valium a day for about four weeks. One day i skipped and i had a bad attack! it was early December and I went in thinking i was dying. The doctor only checked my vitals and said my lungs were fried. that sent me into a bigger panic! but anyway, he shot me up with Ativan, i passed out and he sent me home with a prescription of Ativan, no not realizing i was withdrawing from the benzo in the Valium.

i went completely nuts. i woke my mom at 4 a.m., telling her I'm having homicidal and suicidal thoughts. she rushed me to the ER and i told them i couldn't breathe and i was dying.

they did all the tests and they said i might have a blood clot in my lungs and i needed a CAT scan. well i had to wait four hours for the results and i prayed if i was healthy i would never smoke again, and he came back and said i was a 100 percent healthy man, but the days ahead would be hard.

I had every symptom on this site in the past week and i forget that it could be withdrawals from nicotine, so thanks everyone on this site for guidance and helping me with all my anxiety. Thanks for reading my story.

By anon136728 — On Dec 23, 2010

It's my sixth month anniversary without chewing tobacco. Still feel out of sorts from time to time, but for the most part I feel OK to good. I chewed for 34 years. Still use sunflower seeds and non-nicotine chewing gum a lot. Hang in there!

By anon136675 — On Dec 23, 2010

Are you guys kidding me?

I have made an honest commitment to quit smoking for the first time in the twenty years i've been giving my money to Philip Morris.

I'm about 56 hours into it now and your all are going to sit here and tell me these last few days are nothing compared to horrors that lie ahead in the next month or so? Oh my God. I'm in so much trouble then.

Well, any suggestions to get through it besides cranberry juice? I'm also an alcoholic of ten years, drinking hard liquor morning noon and night, and I just quit that too. Good times ahead, huh! --Michael

By anon136649 — On Dec 23, 2010

After one month I'm feeling better but not great. Still have most of the symptoms, just less severe. This is the most frustrating part - one day I'll feel pretty good, and the next day worse. Is this normal? I feel like I keep having a relapse every few days.

By JackieH — On Dec 23, 2010

Just when you think the exorcism is almost complete - back it comes. Last night after finally going to sleep at 3 a.m., I awoke at 5 a.m., flailing around and wailing and throwing my arms in the air like something out of a devil-flick. It feels like insanity, it really does.

If it weren't for having read so many other posts, I might head for a psych ward, but instead I say to myself, pacing around trying to calm down, this is a sign of recovery, this is the body and mind healing itself, this is okay. It's that or scream.

Best wishes for a smoke-free holiday season, all. When you see all those smokers having such a lovely relaxed time remember that they still have the horrors of quitting ahead of them, whereas you have endured and survived.

By anon135849 — On Dec 20, 2010

Twenty-four days in after 30 years. symptoms have included great sadness, anger and a painful breakout of psoriasis on my face.

It's hard to talk to people as it seems to be a lack of understanding of long term effects and i guess people seem scared of change in themselves and their friends.

I convinced myself it would be easier to quit than the addiction kept telling me, changed a lot of my trigger habits before hand then went cold turkey.

I know i am through the worst, yet am finding my emotional state a challenge.

By JackieH — On Dec 20, 2010

OK, so this is going to be it from me for a while. It's now a full three weeks and I still have yucky symptoms - painful cough, iffy stomach, bloating, twitching, difficulty sleeping and concentrating. But I saw my doctor this morning (also an ex-smoker) and he says this is all part of the process. The body is dealing with a lot.

I felt very relieved by our chat and recommend that everyone who is quitting checks in with their doctor during the process. I was too determined to go it alone, too quick to believe the 72 hours and it's all over quit message. You need all the help you can get, so go ask for it! Thrilled to be off the cigarettes in spite of the suffering. Happy New Year to all you quitters. It's something to celebrate!

By anon135524 — On Dec 19, 2010

Great site, good to hear that I am not the only one going through hell. Sorry, don't really wish it on anyone.

Day 35 for me, the dizziness and the head buzzing are the worst for me. I can deal with being tired, and unfocused is okay too, as work has pretty much slowed down, and no headaches either. The worst is the feeling that you are sick or something is wrong but there really isn't, other than your body getting rid of the addiction. I think I still have a while to go but it makes it easier to hear others have experienced the same things and better health lies ahead. Thanks to all that have contributed to this site; it provides so much hope.

By JackieH — On Dec 19, 2010

Day 21 and finally started coughing up crap instead of just blowing bubbles - which I will take as a good, rather than a bad sign. Still bloated like crazy and suffering the worst restless legs ever.

Just sent husband off to store for cranberry juice after reading 511. Here in Europe we are completely snowed in and it's hard work just going out to pick up milk. I wish I'd given up at a slightly better time, but I guess everyone thinks that - because no other websites tell you that it will take a lot more than 72 hours to get over quitting smoking! If I had it to do over I would pick a quiet month in the summertime and go to the beach for a while. Not -5 degrees, snowed-in and right before the busy Christmas season when you're expected to be fun.

I'm not sure if I'll ever be fun again!

By anon135513 — On Dec 19, 2010

Love the stuff on this site.

I'm at five weeks now, slowly getting better everyday. I had severe dizziness, shortness of breath, really tight chest, diarrhea, blocked nose, lack of concentration, couldn't drink coffee, nervousness/anxiety. Couldn't believe it was all due to quitting smoking. Doctors just look at you as if you a hypochondriac! I'm usually lucky to see the doc once a year, but this has really kicked my butt!

Ended up having a CT scan of my chest done, had a blood test done and had all the lung function tests done. I really thought there was something seriously wrong with me, always felt like I couldn't breathe. But thanks to this site, I know that all I have been through is the same as other people and I'm not dying or going crazy! --Mark.

By anon135473 — On Dec 19, 2010

I've smoked a pack a day for 32 years. First two days were bad, then withdrawal set in and it got worse. Numerous symptoms including chest pains and anxiety, moodiness, smells, gas, poor sleep, twitchy itchy extremities etc. The worst symptom is the brakes on my mouth.

Evidently smoking helped me to keep my opinions and comments to myself. Now it's a free-for-all of sharing. I'm taking B, C, D and melatonin to help stay on track.

By Charles ALbert Fermalino — On Dec 18, 2010

only cranberry juice can lessen all those symptoms attack. tested and proven.

By watknhom — On Dec 18, 2010

I posted one on 503. It is almost seven weeks now since my last cigarette,I am still not feel 100 percent well yet, that because I have been prescribed 0.5mg of Alprazolam twice a day for my anxiety. This worries me without it i can not eat and feel nauseated.

So, my question to anybody out there is, is this another sign of dependence or addiction to this kind of drugs? and i only take the full dose for two days. the rest of the time i take it one a day as needed. Can anybody tell me when should i consider reduced doses before things get out of hand.

The reason i ask this question because i have read about these drugs, very addictive, and how long do i have to take the doses that i have been prescribed before I am considered addicted?.

I appreciated any comments or advice. Good luck to all of us. Sansad

By JackieH — On Dec 17, 2010

So this is day 19 and very little relief in sight. The worst thing is the fluid retention - I look and feel pregnant. The legs continue to twitch the minute I try to rest, making sleep virtually impossible.

My husband has moved into a different bedroom because I'm keeping him awake kicking my legs. Everyone around me wants to be supportive but I'm not sure they mean cook my meals, clean my house, and do my laundry for me! I am desperate for a return to normalcy.

Before I quit I felt really quite fit - I had no idea what was coming. That said, I won't go back, because now I know what the nicotine was masking. A whole lot of poison running through my old veins, that's what. I'm now feeling every single bit of it, in every single cell. Aaagh.

By anon135118 — On Dec 17, 2010

One tip that has really helped me: when the panic starts to set in, breathe like you did when you were a smoker. Two deep in, pause, three blowing out through pursed lips. Repeat until you calm down or your natural breathing takes over. Sounds a bit strange but it really does helps you keep calm.

By JackieH — On Dec 17, 2010

I am now three weeks into the Screaming Heebie Jeebies after smoking a pack a day for 30 years (started in the girl's toilets at my school). I never post online, never, but I just had to join this website. It is the only place where I have read anything that actually relates to how I feel right now.

Thank you everyone for sharing your stories of going to the emergency room, not sleeping for days on end, thinking you can't breathe, have knives in your chest, just turned into your emphysemic grandmother overnight. I'm finding it very inspirational.

Last night I slept upright, like on a plane, and got my first shut-eye in two days. Although it was not pleasant, I pretended I was flying first class to Bora Bora and that made it all a bit better - although not really, as I'm sure you're all aware.

Hang in there everyone. Anything is better than dying of emphysema like my wheezing, groaning, gran.

By gsseth — On Dec 16, 2010

It is 60 days not since I left smoking and chewing tobacco. The feeling is very good. I still sometimes have breathing difficulty and still problem concentrating, it is getting better but still not as good as it was earlier.

Most people have mentioned loneliness after quitting. This is why to be here helps a lot as we can read other views and extend support by sharing experience. This cannot be appreciated by someone who has not undergone this.

By anon134653 — On Dec 15, 2010

This entire post is awesome. It's my 15th day today; cold turkey. smoked for about 10 years at approx. 10-12 a day. I have experienced most of the symptoms as everyone else on this post.

The one that bugs me the most that the quitting has really messed with my sleep patterns. The cravings i can deal with (most of the time), but the lack of sleep has been killing me. Anyhow, i just want to say that don't give up! These symptoms will go away (they have to!)

By anon134348 — On Dec 14, 2010

To all you ex smokers: this is my sixth month! I experienced all those terrible withdrawals, i smoked a pack a day for 15 years. It gets better, guys, i promise, so hang in there. This site really helped me!

May god bless you all.

please don't go back. be positive and think that all those terrible withdrawals you are having is your body's way of fighting to get back to how it is meant to be functioning!

I hardly have any withdrawals anymore, yes i do crave the odd cig and at times i still feel a bit down but nothing like what i was feeling! Hang in there. the result is great.

May the good man above be with all of you.

By anon133832 — On Dec 12, 2010

I'm 49 years old, I quit smoking 34 days ago, and up until now I feel nothing but miserable all the time. At first I thought it will only last a few days or a week at the most, but now there seems to be no end in sight at all.

I have all kind of symptoms that one can: dizziness, nausea, headache, flu-like symptoms, stomach upset, constipation, now not to mention that I also have an anxiety. The Dr. give me 0.5mg Alprazolam (xanax)twice a day. I wonder if I will ever get back to normal again. This website the best one that I can turn to when I feel lonely, because it gives me hope to fight against this monster.

One probably did not expect that it will come to this day after 35 year of smoking like me. Let's keep this flame burning together. hope that there will be light at the end of the tunnel. Bless you all. --Sansad.

By Nolean — On Dec 12, 2010

OK, today is day 105 cold turkey, and just when i thought i was almost in the clear i get knocked on my behind. the nervousness, anxiety and stuff never left me, but the other day i got a chest pain and went to the emergency room. they ran all sorts of heart and lung tests and everything came back fine. why oh why did i ever start smoking? I just want to feel better! Anyone else had chest pains this late in the game?

P.S. when i tell doctors that i quit smoking, all they say is congratulations. they never mention that any symptoms that I'm having is part of a nicotine withdrawal. why is that?

By anon133704 — On Dec 11, 2010

I've tried to quit for years with varying degrees of success. I've used gum, patches, you name it. Spent about a year chewing the gum (would go back to smoking every time I stopped) then eventually started smoking again anyway. All it took was turning 40.

Planned to quit all nicotine before hand and didn't want to smoke once I was 40. Seemed old and didn't want to encourage aging quicker! (It worked for me - I know it makes no sense!) Went cold turkey on my birthday - that was a month ago! Good luck quitting!

By anon133555 — On Dec 11, 2010

i quit cold turkey without any replacement since August It's now December. I'm still suffering from panics, anxiety, depression and severe fatigue. all i have to do is to pray n have faith in God. we just need to hang in there. God bless us.

By anon132712 — On Dec 08, 2010

i just stopped smoking two days ago. i haven't had any sleep and i have gone through a whole big bag of jolly ranchers. At the same time i gave up sugar, so i don't think I'm going to be able to do this.

By gsseth — On Dec 07, 2010

I posted 490 and now about 50 days since no smoking or chew. Now things are getting better.

@ 491 and 496: just give little more time and you will start feeling better.

I was having all these problems as mentioned in 490 but now it is not so bad. Still i lack concentration and sometimes don't want to do anything and still get angry, but it is improving.

All the best, and just think that for so long 15 - 20 years and 15 - 30 times we used to smoke, so body and mind will need some time to adjust after we stop smoking.

By anon132503 — On Dec 07, 2010

I am currently on day 15 without a cigarette and I feel like death. Thank you for all your comments -- at least now I know the symptoms are from the nicotine withdrawal.

I seem to have them all: chest pain, nasal congestion, palpitations, aches and pains, headaches, anxiety, and I smoked as few as five or six a day!

This is my second time, and I'm getting older, so maybe that makes it harder on you physically. All I can think of, over and over, is never again!

By anon131719 — On Dec 03, 2010

I was post 480 2 weeks ago. I am now 31 days into this. The muscle aches are for the most part gone. Still have a lack of interest in things I loved in the past and feel jittery with the chills. Nicotine stinks! What a stupid habit I had. I wasn't even living life. I was a zombie controlled by this drug.

By anon131493 — On Dec 02, 2010

I have been without a cigarette now for 30 days. I tried using the nicoderm patch for a few weeks but the doctor told me that it was overflowing my system with nicotine, as if I was continuously chain-smoking, and he suggested I stop the patch and try Wellbutrin.

I told him I was having severe heart palpitations, severe depression, and worst of all, severe anxiety attacks. Cigarette companies have put more crap in their cigarettes over the past 10 years to make them stronger and to make it harder for you to quit so withdrawal symptoms are going to be much worse that what the quitting smoking websites will tell you.

There are tons of other chemicals in cigarettes that you may not know about and your mind and body get addicted to them as well as the nicotine. So quitting is going to be like quitting heroin, maybe worse for some.

Anyway, the doctor told me to expect palpitations, anxiety, shortness of breath, depression, cravings, hunger, insomnia, mood swings, and a slew of other symptoms that will last up to six months or more. My palpitations started on the first day I quit (and were even worse while wearing a patch) and I have had them ever since. They are not as severe as they were a few weeks ago but they still scare me and that usually leads to an anxiety attack. The doctor also gave me Xanax for those moments and I am halfway through a bottle of 30, lol.

Another weird withdrawal symptom was the shortness of breath feeling. I would be at rest on my couch and it would feel like I wasn't getting enough oxygen and I would start breathing too much and almost hyperventilate. That lasted up until last weekend and I have not experienced them since. That was happening multiple times a day since the first day I quit.

I also got a bad case of depression and it has taken two weeks of Wellbutrin to get me back to almost normal. The doctor said it may take a month for the full effects to kick in. So, for anyone worried about the crazy withdrawal symptoms, just know they will go away over time.

Your mind and body really liked those nasty chemicals and it will scare you into getting those chemicals back in your system. Just be strong and know that you will recover and you will so much better in the long run. Good luck to all you who are quitting!

By anon131335 — On Dec 02, 2010

This is a great site.

I’ve been smoking about a pack a day from 18 to 36. I tried quitting for the first time when I was 24. That lasted for about four weeks. I did that with a close friend but we smoked cigars every few days, so it wasn’t really a quit. Regardless, we both had cigs about a month in and then went back to the usual. In the two or three years after that, I tried to kick the habit but it didn’t take because I really didn’t want to quit.

This year, at the age of 36, I finally wanted to quit, genuinely. I found an open weekend and went cold turkey (though I had gum around from an earlier plan to quit -- still haven’t taken it).

Here’s what I’ve learned:

1. Nicotine is really addictive. Like all addictions, the extent varies from person to person but it’s safe to say that for most of us, it has really strong grip. We will not experience anything like this elsewhere in life.

2. You genuinely have to want to quit. As the comments on this site demonstrate, this is going to be hard, perhaps the hardest things you’ve done (I’ve done tough things but quitting has been the toughest for me). It’s going to be harder to make out if you truly don’t want to stop smoking.

3. Experiences differ. Some people find it easy to quit while (most) others find it hard. Some have anxiety, while others do not. Some can’t sleep, while others sleep too much. For me, the key symptom has been the withdrawal. So painful. But you’re not alone.

4. Educate yourself. Know what to expect and read what others have to say. I guess if you’re reading this then you’re on your way. This thread is great but you should search for a pro stop smoking site, e.g., search for “benefits of stopping smoking” or something similar and reading those stories. They are empowering and will help you out.

5. The alternative is so much worse. Quitting has been the hardest thing I’ve done. But it’s nothing compared to would be like to die from one of the many illnesses (e.g., cancer or stroke) that cigarettes cause. Or telling my wife or kids that I’ll be dead in a few years.

Finally, keep the resolve. If you don’t make it this quit, that’s fine. There’s always another time. And for those that are still going strong, keep it up and don’t get complacent.

By anon131067 — On Dec 01, 2010

I am 49 days in and the cravings are so strong I wish I could medicate in some way. Alcohol only helps so much. I have used for 26 years both smoking and chewing.

When I quit I was dipping a can a day. If I went out drinking I could easily smoke two packs. I have done all the heavy drugs and I can honestly say that nicotine is the worst. I think it's because it is so accepted.

If my muscles just stopped tingling I could relax and be able to concentrate.

By anon130755 — On Nov 29, 2010

I used to smoke 10 to 15 cigs/day for five years. I quit smoking two weeks ago. I still feel dizzy and depressed. I feel so dizzy that i cannot do anything. Help me.

By anon130325 — On Nov 28, 2010

This is the second time I quit. First time was two years back for about 38 days. The mistake I did was to just have one chew and that led to more and more.

I used to smoke for 20 years. about 15-20 cigarettes per day and also used to chew tobacco for 17 years. When at times smoking is not possible chewing was handy. Both smoking was giving me frequent throat problems and chewing giving me mouth problems so it was going on in my mind to stop both these some how.

I quit both these 40 days back. It was real difficult for first week with tingling in hands and feet, breathing problems, dizziness, weakness, boredom and loss of interest in all activities.

Even now I feel so dull and don't want to do much work. just read more about quitting and get some comfort. I try to read as much as possible so that the mind is occupied.

Now I have a sore mouth for four days and it is getting better now. I read that it is due to the many tiny ulcers which are getting healed now since I have stopped chewing.

Many sites say that up to 90 days something or the other keeps up coming after one quits. So I am prepared in the mind to face anything but I will not smoke or chew again.

It is most important that after suffering the pain of quitting one must not chew or take even a puff aginas this stuff is to addictive and will hook you again.

I will not give up the effort and same thing I tell others here: don't give up the effort it is worth it once you succeed.

By Nolean — On Nov 28, 2010

I am almost at 90 days nicotine free. The cravings have leveled off mostly. i still feel anxiety and depression. the chest pains have mostly leveled off. I hope i can keep it up.

By anon130224 — On Nov 27, 2010

Smoked for less than a year, about four or five cigarettes per day.

It's my 40th hour of non smoking and I have loose motions, like continuous. I am worried I will get dehydrated. I am feeling very weak and numb. No sleep. Can someone help on the loose stools, please?

By anon129882 — On Nov 25, 2010

hello tatahar how are you? any improvement? just let me know, just drop by saying hi to all quitters. Congratulations! God bless us.

By anon129700 — On Nov 24, 2010

Well, I am now at day 15. I am 57 and have smoked cigs and or cigars for more than 40 years. I have had anxiety and depression on and off every day. Some days a wave or a feeling will come over me which reminds me of smoking. I went cold turkey and feel OK today. I have a lot of trouble concentrating and doing things. Some days I sit all day and do nothing since I am retired and can.

By anon129327 — On Nov 23, 2010

Wow. At least now i know I'm not going crazy. i started to kick the habit about a week ago now, but i still find myself having at least a half a cigarette a day. my wife says that's good, because i used to smoke about 15 a day, but I've been getting dizzy spells, anxiety, panic attacks, feeling like my chest is being pressed down by something heavy, semi blocked nasal passages. it's weird. I'm doing breathing exercises to calm me, and find it works, but looking at my two sons, and not having them to grow up without a father like i did, really gives me the strength to prosper, and beat this thing.

Anyway God bless people and stay strong, and keep praying. we are not doing this alone. He is watching over us.

By anon129183 — On Nov 22, 2010

Just needed to say, this site is just wonderful for support. You look up "smoking withdrawal" and it only tells you that you will feel awful for three days, and that's such bull. I am on Day 51. I posted before (Post 470). Smoked pack a day for 18 years. I am 36 years old and just decided to quit on my birthday, cold turkey, because, as you know, smoking kills you.

Still feeling chest palpitations, jittery. Dizzy most of the time, and the headache comes on every afternoon, seems like when my body knows its not getting any nicotine, my headache starts. Just plain feel out of it, and it drives me nuts. I used to be so organized and on the ball. I would like to know how I can get my brain back? Does anyone have any advice about that part, or if anyone feels like I do. Just plain stupid most of the time now. I will say, the need for a cig has left.

I realize I will never smoke again, because these symptoms, that no one publishes besides here, are real and awful. Again, I appreciate this site, makes me feel like I am not crazy. Hope I keep feeling better day by day.

By anon129162 — On Nov 22, 2010

One week ago I was online and ran across this website. It gave me the courage to quit, so I am now past week one with the most bizarre withdrawal systems. First, my nasty addiction. I smoked three packs a day for 20 years. Decided to quit, and developed a hefty addiction to Nicorette. I never even considered the 2 mg, stayed with the 4 mg, and have been chain chewing for 14 years. I have always been extremely healthy, but last month developed horrible joint pain, and after months of tests, was told I have mono. Regardless, the scare was enough to make me quit -- that, and of course, reading these posts and knowing that there are other people out there who have been in my shoes.

My withdrawal symptoms: head buzzing, ears ringing, non-stop tingling and buzzing in my torso, feet, and hands (like electrical current running through), no sleep, no hunger, and I basically feel as though I am living on another planet. I am having 35 people for Thanksgiving dinner in two days and wondering how I will do it. Xanax, I think. Or something that will take the edge off. Can't drink any wine because of the mono, so I am trying to get lots of exercise and fresh air. From what I have read in these post, I have a long way to go.

Thanks to all of you for sharing your stories. It has been a Godsend to me, and has provided a lot of encouragement.

By SigTauMatt — On Nov 19, 2010

I was a smoker for a little over eight years. two-packs-a-day for 3 of them, and the rest were 1-pack years. I went cold-turkey the end of August '10 and held strong until last week.

I've had extreme anxiety since the second week of October, with periods of ease spattered about, and a period of 10 days of total calm up until five days ago.

My anxiety has consisted of general fear, heat flushing, chills, weakness in arms and legs, lack of appetite, and a feeling of disconnectedness. My anxiety now isn't *nearly* as frequent or severe as the first period of it was, but it's still there, rearing its head at the strangest times.

I still have not bought a pack, and I've only "bummed" one for four of those days. It's about the only thing that levels me out.

I'm not crazy about the thought of grabbing a smoke every once in a while. I've worked too hard and made too much progress to slip back (this is my second attempt at quitting in four years), but I've been having moments of weakness.

I work strange hours, so most of my friends and family aren't available to talk when I'm free/need support.

Reading these posts, however, let me know that I'm not alone in my type of withdrawal. It keeps me from beating myself up so much, and not to take myself so seriously.

I assumed it was GAD with everything else that's been going on with myself (moved, new job, death of a loved one, etc), but that stuff never bothered me too badly before. The withdrawal most certainly did!

I feel as if I've found a new place to visit when I'm feeling more edgy than normal. I'm going for not another puff, despite how rough it may be. Despite the anxiety, cold chills, hot flashes, and moments of absolute hopelessness. I breathe better than I ever remember, my sleep is typically more fulfilling, I don't smell like an ashtray anymore. And if I slip up every once in a while, it's not the end of the world.

Two smokes a month? No problem.

Everyone keep up the good fight! And know you're not doing this alone.

By anon128344 — On Nov 19, 2010

today is my third day not smoking and i am having pretty bad diarrhea. is diarrhea one of the withdrawal symptoms?

By anon128121 — On Nov 18, 2010

I quit smoking about a year ago. That turned into being addicted to nicotine gum. Finally, 15 days ago, I said forget it and threw all the gum out. Since that day I have been anxious, muscle aches daily. I got the flu etc. How long will this last?

By anon128011 — On Nov 18, 2010

You have quit smoking for: one week, one day, nine hours and 48 mins.

The first three-ish days were hell. I felt like I was going through menopause. Hot flashes, waking up in cold sweats, dizziness. My boss dubbed me the "space cadet" and I couldn't concentrate on what my name was it got so bad.

I had the heart palpitations, anxiety, etc. I am wondering why I haven't started to cough yet. I am hoping my lungs will clear out.

The cravings are OK. I can be around people smoking and I am still on the grossness of it all. I hope that sticks.

Day six was a bad day. I just wanted to crawl in my bed in the fetal position and stay there.

I should mention I smoked consistently (barring boot camp and pregnancy) for 16 years starting at age 18. At least 20 a day, and stints when it was in the 30-40 range.

By anon127538 — On Nov 16, 2010

Started smoking at 15, 19 years ago. While my "normal" number per day varied, of course, it was between 30 and 40 with a short peak near 60 and a few troughs around 10.

Two weeks ago, I put on a patch and cut my smoking by about 60 percent with no real trouble. One week ago, I ran out of cigarettes. I haven't gotten any more either. Again, not really any trouble, which surprises me. As I recall, each cigarette gives you more than 1mg of nicotine now and I was up to about 32 per day. So, 35-40mgs every day? Down to 21 using the patch? I should be having more trouble than this.

Working on day seven. Good news: I still do not want to smoke! Seriously, I have no desire to pick up another cigarette and light it. Bad news: I'm now having the trouble from this. Got out of bed to look up a bit on human anatomy to see if part of the circulatory system is right "there" (a particular spot on my chest). I thought it was maybe withdrawal, especially since the feelings are not reflected in my pulse; yeah, I know, real scientific.

Landed here and recognized the feedback spiral: chest discomfort, emotional discomfort, chest discomfort, repeat until panic starts setting in.

I also recognize many of my other symptoms and, while discouraged to see I may be fighting this for months, I am encouraged to know the score. Withdrawal symptoms mean I'm winning!

I can deny pain its hold on me under certain circumstances (advance warning and no sudden changes). Knowing those symptoms are "just" withdrawal, hopefully I can deny them a hold on me as well.

With apologies to Shakespeare: To bed, perchance to sleep.

By anon125460 — On Nov 09, 2010

For those feeling dizzy, it is completely normal. You are getting more oxygen in your bloodstream, something your body is no longer used to. It will level off after a while.

By anon125437 — On Nov 09, 2010

i smoked for 10 years then quit for two then picked it back up for another five and now I've been trying to quit again.

Withdrawal was very hard the first time and i felt so proud to be rid of the habit. i have no idea how i started again other than i had a smoke one day. suffice it to say, quitting the second time is much harder than the first. I've had multiple attempts and they've all failed. The withdrawal is much more severe this time around.

If you're in the middle of the quitting, fight and hang in there. it does get better. whatever you do, never smoke again.

By anon125219 — On Nov 08, 2010

Three months free of nicotine but still suffering from panics attacks and anxiety. Too bad for me. Can anyone help me, please?

By anon125174 — On Nov 08, 2010

To Charles Albert Fermalino: Somewhere among all these posts are one or two posts of mine, where I mention that a friend of mine who is a biologist told me the withdrawal can take up to one year. I don't know what exact symptoms you're having as you only say:

"Still suffering" and then you continue on saying:"I think I've lost my hope to get back my normal life".

First, try to read as many posts as you can in this site. The withdrawal symptoms for some of us can be brutal. They were for m,e, even though I was not craving the cigarettes.

I had pains in places I never had before. Panic attacks and anxiety attacks are foreign to me but the withdrawal symptoms included them.

I am now two months and eight days without smoking. I would had never believed it as I've been smoking forever and I'm in my 50's.

Please take notice that depression is part of the withdrawal symptoms. You will feel better but it might take a long time for you. As I said it might take up to one year. You must accept/ realize that if you smoked for a long, long time (as I did one pack a day), it will take a long time to recuperate. Have faith.

Read all the brutal withdrawal some of us have gone through and continue to have. It will get better. Have faith.

I'm taking vitamin supplements such as: magnesium, selenium, Vitamin C and Vitamin E. These have helped a lot. And for depression I'm taking the natural St. John's Wort.

Have faith. You are not the only one going through this. It's a natural process you're going through. God bless. Regards, Elizabeth

By anon124994 — On Nov 08, 2010

I am on day three without cigarettes. I have had episodes of crying for no apparent reason and a "pins and needles" sensation in the back of my head. Today I had this sensation all over my entire body for about one minute.

I'm also having a very hard time sleeping and feel very "foggy". Constipation and bloating are also issues. But I know from past attempts at quitting that these issues are short lived and that they are far less serious than any issues I will have to face if I continue to smoke!

By anon124377 — On Nov 05, 2010

I had been dipping since I was 15 (21 years), damn lacrosse team! Started with Kodiak, then Cope, then Extra Strong Skruf from Sweden. I am on day 5 now, cold turkey. I was so far gone that I basically had a dip in my mouth 24x7. The only time I would take it out was to eat. I would put a dip in before I went to sleep!

My first day was easy, the second day was hard but after that its been pretty OK. I read this book called "easy way to stop smoking."

You can also download it for free using bit torrent. Its pretty good and explains that you don't really give anything up when you quit. It helped me out a lot.

Thanks to all the people here who have written about their experiences! Trust me: if I can quit dipping anyone can! You can do it! --Nicholas

By Charles ALbert Fermalino — On Nov 04, 2010

Still suffering. i think I've lost my hope to get back my normal life.

By anon124129 — On Nov 04, 2010

On day 31 of quitting cold turkey. Smoked pack a day for 18 years. The first week was hell. Yelling at everyone, feeling of panic constantly, chest pain, constipation, bloating.

The second and third week the extreme panic has leveled off, only once and a while I freak out a little, when I go to a party (drinking) or fridays were are big smoking night for me, so those are hard.

The big problem now is the feeling of being ill a lot. This is brought upon by terrible headaches, almost constantly and the dizziness is just insane. The feeling of almost going to fall over, most of the day. Also, that you are just in a constant fog.

Driving, I panic, like I am not paying attention to anything I am doing. I used to be a organizer, always on top of everything, now just seem to not give a hoot about anything. I am hoping that this fog will lift and I will feel like myself soon.

Reading that it takes months. Thinking I should try a cleanse or something to speed it up. Anyone have any suggestions?

But on the upside, I am very proud of myself for quitting, my kids say I smell so good now, and I am starting to run instead of walking at lunch break, and I am saving a hunk of money each month. Everyone keep up the good work. I know it will be worth it!

By anon122941 — On Oct 30, 2010

I'm on my second month now but anxiety (feeling like fear is hanging at the back of head) is still there. I went to ER for two times due to panic attacks, had test but it went normal.

Please, has anybody experienced ringing in their ears? Sometimes it comes to a point, like a subtle hissing sound inside the head. I'm praying that all symptoms (anxiety, depression, ringing ears, insomnia, palpitations) will be gone just like when it started to appear few weeks after I stopped smoking.

By tatahar — On Oct 26, 2010

@466: Withdrawal symptoms varies from person to person.

I quit in June, and until now I still experience anxiety attack (fast heartbeat, panic, lightheaded) once in a while. I am feeling much much better (follow my post).

Don't worry about it. Just remember one thing for sure: It won't kill you and it will eventually pass. Time will heal all. Trust me.

By anon121955 — On Oct 26, 2010

I'm so happy having discovered this forum. i have smoked for 20 years, 10 to 15 cigs a day. I have attempted to quit five or six times in the past but could not go beyond 50 days.

This time i have managed 90 days, but i had tremendous withdrawal symptoms which are still continuing, especially anxiety, heart beating faster and slight pain in the heart accompanied by release of gas.

I got myself checked up medically and nothing was found. I have no cravings to smoke but I'm obsessed that something is wrong with my heart, although three EKGs have come back normal.

Is this also part of withdrawal symptoms and how long will it last? --suffering quitter

By Charles ALbert Fermalino — On Oct 25, 2010

i agreed with tatahar about his alternative treatment. try also eat more bananas and drink milk before bed time. Bananas and Milk contain tryptophan, a type of protein that the body converts into serotonin. Serotonin is a hormone that is known to make you feel happy and improve your mood. can lessen those symptoms attack. try it. it really works and is effective.

By tatahar — On Oct 24, 2010

@Nolean: I've had similar symptoms as yours, though I wouldn't describe it as memory loss in a most traditional sense. At that time, when I was talking to someone (like my girlfriend), I felt as though I couldn't concentrate on what she's saying, and my mind would always try to recall what she was saying few seconds ago.

It's really frustrating, and scary, really. It keeps happening for about one or two months, before your mind starts slowly healing itself and you stop worrying about not remembering stuff, everything is real again finally.

If you follow my post, my withdrawal was strange: Anxiety attack, lightheadedness, moody feeling, etc etc.

My tips : Get VIT B Complex with Zinc and Magnesium supplement (like Beroccas), consume every morning for about one month.

Drink Probiotics once a day (yogurt is fine).

Get plenty of sleep, burn aromatherapy during bed time (I use body shop Deep Sleep essential oil).

Take on a new hobby (for me photography).

Be strong, all this will pass. Let me know how it goes.

By anon121303 — On Oct 24, 2010

for 462 nolean: yes a severe lack of concentration that feels like a loss of memory and the pauses and stares with a blank brain, like you can't get yourself to think like before is one of the withdrawal symptoms. i had that too and it was overwhelming for few months but it gets less in time. it's different for each person.

all of what they're saying, in all posts here, i went through: anxiety, panic attacks, feeling like you're losing your mind, depression, crying, melt down for no obvious reason, feeling like you've lost a loved one or love break, loneliness and the empty feeling in the heart, negative and dark thoughts are all part of the procedure, in time the gaps between all this gets bigger and longer.

But, you need to replace the habit and start something new like walking in the park,reading, exercise, anything that can gets your mind of those feelings to fill the gap that non smoking left. its been more than eight months now and i will never smoke again after what i went through. be strong. it passes.

By Nolean — On Oct 23, 2010

Day 58, cold turkey. I still have some strong cravings, some dizziness, confusion and memory loss. Has anyone had any memory loss besides me?

By anon121238 — On Oct 23, 2010

I quit chewing tobacco about a month ago or a little longer. I, like 428s post, have been having the exact same issues. I have dipped a can a day for 10 years without any stops.

This is really hard to knock, but I will say this website is a big help. If it makes any of you feel better, I am 27 years old and I am going through almost everything you guys are going through. I have been to the ER 3 times and had all types of test ran and everything has come back good.

I am dizzy all day long and that hasn't lessened a bit, I can't sleep, and I sometimes have heart palpitations (along with anxiety and depression). I exercise daily usually run/walk for at least 30 minutes a day and I still have all the symptoms mentioned above. This is definitely no joke and I applaud all of you for fighting this and being strong.

I will pray for this entire forum because I am going through the same things you guys are and I know with time we will win!

I want to personally thank everyone for their posts to this website as it keeps me positive and helps me move forward. Good luck to everyone - Peace Ni¢k

By anon120014 — On Oct 20, 2010

i have been smoking for 23 years gave chantix a go and they work well for me. minor withdrawal symptoms (harmless) but never thought I'd see this day. Day 100 now and cravings are acceptable. keep with it. your day will come.

By Charles ALbert Fermalino — On Oct 16, 2010

still suffering, but bearable. thanks for the support, guys.

By stretch1one — On Oct 05, 2010

Dizziness is very common with quitting smoking, along with hot flashes and sweating. Nicotine withdrawal is no joke. They symptoms are different for everyone, though; just don't panic.

I've quit smoking now for nine months i used the patch system, or let's say a modified version of the patch system. I smoked two-plus packs a days for 25 years. I have a post in here, way back in 282 or something like that. Anyway, look through all the posts; it will relax you, trust me.

I felt like anything and everything happened to me. Just hang in there. Not one smoke for nine months. I never would have guessed i would be a non smoker. i still like the smell, though. Mmmm. Anyway, don't give up!

By tatahar — On Oct 05, 2010

The past few posts have reported dizziness after quitting smoking. Rest assured that this is normal! If you looked at all my previous thread, I was having a very weird lightheadedness and slight dizziness (without headache) constantly!

I am on day 31 and I am still feeling it a little bit now.

Hang in there, and let me know how it goes.

By anon115818 — On Oct 04, 2010

Two weeks, one day that I have quit smoking. Dizzy all day long. Afraid I'm going to fall. I've read dizziness can occur but I can't imagine going through this another week or two. I've checked blood pressure and blood sugar thinking something else is going on. Both are normal. Another week of this dizziness and I'll end up in the hospital or dead from a fall. I'll stick with it.

By anon115143 — On Sep 30, 2010

For almost one month, I've been suffering from panic attacks, anxiety/nervous, depression, hungry, sometimes anorexia, but no craving from nicotine. my doctor gave me champix, but i didn't take it. i know the side effects of that medicine is too dangerous. Please help.

By anon115100 — On Sep 30, 2010

i quit exactly one week ago today. I've been smoking for about 10 years and about a 1/2 to a pack a day. it's not my first time trying to quit over the years so i kind of knew what to expect. but, as the days passed and all i had was the extreme cravings i considered myself lucky that i was sailing right through.

Then today came. I've had dizziness, loss of concentration, heart racing, body shaking. this is a full seven days after my last cigarette. i thought that by this stage, my body was supposed to be rid of the nicotine. is this normal?

By tatahar — On Sep 27, 2010

@Nolean: I know how it feels. I can totally relate to what you're going through. Out of all the symptoms - it's the dizziness, lightheadedness, brain fog that is the most alarming. I'm not sure if anxiety can really make you feel like this. It's been three weeks and a half now, and I still feel the same, more or less. Sigh. I guess we just need to hang in there.

By Nolean — On Sep 27, 2010

Today marks 30 days of me not smoking.

I was a pack a day smoker for 12 years. I am 33 years old. I have had many withdrawal symptoms during these last 30 days. Even now I think I'm going crazy.

I have had: dizziness, muscle soreness, headache, anxiety, panic, heart beating fast for no reason, loss of appetite at first but now I'm more hungry, feeling out of it, brain fog, aches and pains. You name it, I have had it.

These withdrawal symptoms are kicking my butt but I am so glad to have discovered this website because it offers me a lot of support when I need it.

By anon113927 — On Sep 26, 2010

I'm really happy to have found this site. There is too little information on the web about the more acute symptoms of withdrawal and their duration. It's helpful to have personal accounts that expand upon some of the standard information about what to expect and for how long. I realize everyone's experience is different, but I thought I'd post a little about my experience in case it was helpful.

First, I want to offer a bit of warning about NRT -nicotine replacement therapies. I was a light to medium smoker for 14 years (about 5-10 daily) and quit just before my 40th birthday. Unfortunately I replaced tobacco products with the lozenges, gum and the patches and ended up being addicted to them for the past three years. By the time I quit all nicotine (cold turkey) last month, I was chewing or sucking the equivalent of 50mg daily - the amount of nicotine in about as many (50) light cigarettes: a whopping five-fold increase for me from when I was actually smoking. Although I eliminated the other 4,000 deadly ingredients when I quit smoking, I ended up deepening my nicotine addiction. Please be careful when using these products and establish a quit date from them as well (90 days as per recommended).

So, here I am on day 35 and feeling incrementally better each day, but G-d have I scared myself and been kicking myself for every getting addicted in the first place. In short, my experience and a question: Panic attack early on - thankfully only one -- which was enough, waves of sadness, bloated stomach on and off, and thinking I would die in my sleep from the muscle pain and tingling which I was convinced was cancer.

Shooting/stabbing pains in mid-chest as some people have noted, but also in legs and extremities - not just muscle joint pain or tingling but more like my nerves were firing off randomly and resulting in brief pinching pain - first in one spot then another. First two weeks this was in the legs, then next two weeks more in the upper body. Anyone else experience this? Mostly subsided at this point. Also lymph nodes swelled in various places for a day or two, then shifted, then swelled, then that ended.

I have an appointment for a general health check up just to make sure, and had a complete annual just five months ago that came back top notch, but was hoping someone could let me know if the tingling they have experienced was similar. Good luck to all and thanks for your stories.

By claf070101 — On Sep 24, 2010

thank you very much tatahar, i really appreciate it. you always make feel me strong and that's the big help for me. I promise I'll stay strong. Good luck and more power!

By tatahar — On Sep 23, 2010

@claf: It's depression. I'm a guy, and i broke down during quitting twice, for no reason at all, and that's scary.

I feel empty, but strangely the emptiness is not because I crave or miss for a cigarettes, it's more like sadness in general. It's hard to explain.

But yes, this is also a common withdrawal symptom, just let it run it's course. be strong.

like i said, you are not the only one. all of us suffer.

I'm here for you.

By claf070101 — On Sep 23, 2010

@442: i really wonder why I'm always crying without any reason. I'm always thinking that something is missing about me. weird feelings. God please help me. i don't want to be insane!

By claf070101 — On Sep 23, 2010

thanks tatahar for encouragement. have you taken some meds for your withdrawal symptoms? i don't take meds.

By tatahar — On Sep 23, 2010

@445 - calm down. i am experiencing all the crazy stuff that you do as well. i am on day 89 now, the panic attacks and anxiety have lessened.

But I'm still suffering from lightheadedness and the occasional headache.

Please be strong. we will pull through this together.

regards- ** I was 433 & 444 ** --T

By claf070101 — On Sep 23, 2010

I'm feeling sad and confused, mostly I'm having panic attacks, after 42 days quiting smoking. Please help me. I can't do it alone. I can't fight these symptoms anymore. But I'm 100 percent about withdrawing from this habit. Please help.

By anon113030 — On Sep 22, 2010

@443 and fcderrick: Thank you so much for the reassurance. Reading all the posts here and including yours, really made me hopeful and slightly better.

My lightheadedness is slowly improving (I think). I've been thinking and reading a lot, and I think my lightheadedness is not exactly lightheadedness; it's more like everything seems slightly unreal. I'm not sure if this is related to my quitting smoking three months ago.

Like you, I do not really have any cravings for cigarettes at all, isn't that odd? It's only the physical pain and my mental state that really frustrate me! I want to be normal again.

I went for a basic health screening last week (blood, urine, lung x ray, diabetes) and everything came back normal. I still could not sleep well, and it's been two months since I've been able to get a full eight hours sleep. Usually I will wake up after about four hours or sometimes five hours of sleep and unable to get back to sleep.

It's just very stressing to have the physical withdrawal symptoms dragging on for so long. Why in most quit resources online doesn't really inform us that it's taking this long for the withdrawal.

If I am still not well next week, I am going to ask my GP to refer me to some neurologist and get some MRI scans done.

Thanks again for talking to me, God bless us all. Regards, T

By anon112805 — On Sep 22, 2010

To 433: I posted on # 435.

You say that you quit three months ago. This can take up to one year. The other day, while speaking to a family member of mine (a biologist) I asked about how long is this going to go on?

He said 'it can easily take up to one year for some' as the change is on a cellular level in your entire body and these 'addicted cells and receptors are going to be quite ticked off.' You're no longer feeding them what you were feeding them for so many years.

Not everyone goes through it but the longer and the more you smoke the bigger the 'violent protest' these cells and receptors are going to make.

He said every season for about one year you might get different withdrawal symptoms until the second year they start dying off.

Of course, if you feel very ill, dizzy and anxious, go to a doctor.

But remember to read all the posts above and see some people are going through many symptoms months after quitting. God bless!

By anon112804 — On Sep 22, 2010

@no. 440: It's only been six days. It might get worse, the anxiety. Even if you never had it.

At a cellular level your entire body is changing as your cells are no longer receiving the nicotine, plus the other poisons in cigarettes. And they will throw one mean temper tantrum all over you.

The anxiety attacks for me (which I never had) began after the 72 hours of quitting smoking. Probably because there was still nicotine in my body.

The other day I was without the anxiety and yes, that empty, lonely feeling in my heart/soul that you feel. I thought I was home free. Only to realize the anxiety had begun all over again.

Today marks 22 days of not smoking for me. I have ODD pains on left side of my left rib, I'm nervous and find myself crying more than I ever did.

I smoked for about 14 years, one pack, sometimes a bit more than one pack a day the last 10 years. Before those 14 years I was a light smoker, five to 10 cigarettes a day maybe less.

Since I've stopped smoking my nerves are so bad I have lost nine pounds. I'm too nervous to eat what I used to.

I write to you to let you know that that anxiety, the empty feeling, loneliness and sadness are normal and if you need to cry it's all part of the withdrawal that nobody tells us about when they advise us to quit.

We lie to ourselves by saying cigs are okay to smoke.

The tobacco companies lie by not telling us the thousands of poisons in cigs.

And most doctors lie to us by telling us when wee are going through the brutal withdrawals, because they're brutal, that it's all in our minds.

All that you're feeling is part of the withdrawal and it might take weeks, or even months. I'm close already to a month and I'm still suffering.

Take care. I wish you the best. God bless.

By anon111616 — On Sep 17, 2010

I am 38, female. Smoked a pack a day for the past 20 or so years (started when I was 16 but the pack a day habit didn't come into play until a few years later). In the past few months, I noticed my smoking habit was increasing to about a pack and a half a day due to boredom at home, playing internet games like a zombie and just lighting up every few minutes without even realizing it.

Thankfully, just six days ago, it finally clicked that I need to stop. I broke up my last two packs that I had on hand, very late Saturday night and decided that I am stopping. I have been good all week and really have no desire to smoke again, but I feel like my cravings are lasting too long. Will the urges/anxiety be stronger for someone who smoked more than average (what's even average?).

I feel very anxious, like cold/empty in the chest (as if I lost love that broke up with me and you get that empty feeling inside), but sometimes this empty feeling in my chest will last for a full hour when I'm at home. I don't really feel the urge too much at work. I keep reading that the worst symptoms should only last three to five minutes, so is this normal for me on Day six to have these long pangs of anxiety in my chest?

I pray I didn't do any damage with the heavy and very concentrated smoking I was doing in the last few months, so I'm a little afraid to go to the doctor. Should I wait it out?

Maybe I'm not doing enough at home to keep my mind off of the cigarettes. It was, after all, the place where I smoked the most.

Opinions please? I can't stand the smell of it, and am very happy I finally decided to quit, so I really have no intention of lighting up again -- and I don't want to take any form of nicotine to ease these symptoms. Are my long chest-empty feeling pains normal since they are lasting more than five minutes? Thanks!

P.S. Congrats to everyone here. Keep up the good work!

By anon111351 — On Sep 16, 2010

Spent the last hour reading the comments.I'm on my third week of cold turkey. This time, i feel i am off it because i realized what someone has written above: that when you are smoking, you are constantly quitting and lighting up again. It's a closed loop and i just do not want to give that much of my valuable time to an addiction.

I am a person who lives life to the full and i figured that i am spending too much time trying to quit or trying to smoke. hence i quit cold.

The physical symptoms have restricted themselves to runny nose, constant sneezing and exhaustion, but it was expected, wasn't it? I am facing it like i would face a bad break up. The side effects are going to be there, but I've come through bad breaks before and I'm going to get through this too.

It's important to walk. Forget the exercise bit. just plug in your i-pod and walk. It's the best help you can give yourself. And choose a nice nice winding road.

And yeah, come back and read posts like these. Community suffering is way more bearable. Knowing that you are not the only one helps!

By anon111124 — On Sep 15, 2010

I was 433.

i just came back with health checkup today, everything else is normal, pending my blood test and urine result next week. It's been 10 days ago that i felt the mysterious lightheadedness and dizziness after quitting smoking three months ago.

And it's still here with me. God help me,

it's so frustrating and painful. i feel like everything is unreal, my head is like woozy. i broke down last night and today at work.

I just couldn't stand it anymore. someone please pray for me and help me.

By anon111109 — On Sep 15, 2010

This site has really helped me tonight and I am so grateful to have found your posts.

I am 36 and will be going on day three without smoking tomorrow. I am comforted in knowing that by passing day three, a significant amount of the physical addiction will be behind me.

I had no idea about the effects of nicotine on dopamine causing the effects of low sugar. Since I already have low sugar, this helped me prepare with sweet sources such as honey, maple syrup, pancakes and chocolate cake.

The carbs are very helpful to me now. Adding fruits and vegetables and having some sweets have also helped me feel less dizzy. Good luck everyone! God bless!

By anon110474 — On Sep 12, 2010

Exactly 12 days ago, I quit smoking after many years of one pack a day.

I do not miss the cigarettes as I thought I would, but the withdrawal symptoms are difficult.

I have had what I never had in my 51 years of age: Anxiety/panic attacks. They're severe anxiety attacks accompanied at times, especially the first eight days or so with heart palpitations and extreme fear of what, I know not.

I also had pain on both sides of my lower ribs. At times, the pain alternated. one day pain on the left, another day, pain on the right. Other days pain on both sides.

So far no constipation, on the contrary, which is very abnormal for me. Due to my concern for constipation I begun one week before quitting to eat cherries and blueberries and continue to do so daily. this is really excellent if you experience constipation.

Well, to continue with my symptoms. I wake up nervous, anxious. At times I find myself berating myself why did I not quit before? Worrying about what damage I've already done to my body that could had been prevented by never smoking or at least quitting when I was 40 years of age. And this brings on more anxiety. Why could I not then see this as clear as I see it today?

Once during one of those anxiety/panic attacks (which I never, ever had in my entire life before) I felt a numbness creep slowly from the left back side of my neck to the left back side of my head as my heart was racing out of my chest. It look about 10-15 minutes to subside and vanish finally.

What bothers me the most is waking up anxious and getting fasts beats in my heart when at least expected and getting anxiety attacks for no reason at any time of the day or night.

If I had read my own post days before quitting,

I would had thought these were the thoughts of a crazy person with severe emotional issues.

In another words, I know I sound crazy; I just want everyone reading to know that I was never like this before. This is happening since I quit the cigs.

So, if you feel any of these symptoms, it is the nicotine and the other junk in the cigarettes withdrawal.

By fcderrick — On Sep 07, 2010

@433: I would advise you to seek a doctor's advice. Smoking sometimes covers up underlying medical conditions. In my case, for instance, a very serious sinus issue that was spreading rapidly! Some of these things, if left untreated, could have serious complications.

By anon109281 — On Sep 06, 2010

I have been clean for three months. One month into quitting I noticed a ringing sensation in my left ear, and at around two months into it I started feeling slight vertigo, very slight and it didn't disturb me at all. However one morning when I hit the three months mark, i woke up feeling lightheaded, I got a panic attack and anxiety attack that lasted for half a day.

I read somewhere that this feeling should come during the first couple of weeks and not months into quitting smoking. Does anyone have the same thing?

By fcderrick — On Sep 06, 2010

Today is two months cold turkey and I'm feeling a lot better! Chemicals in the brain are starting to return to normal and I'm sleeping again without any aids! My metabolism is almost normal again and my lung capacity is so much higher, Not to mention the money and time smoking saved and put to a better use. Life is good and things do get so much better!

By anon109094 — On Sep 05, 2010

congrats #430 cold turkey is hard. keep up the good work, it is worth it! I am three months now and still have a small struggle every now and then but nothing I can't handle. Be in control of your life! It gets better with time, so be proud of yourself!

By anon108914 — On Sep 04, 2010

I've been reading a few of the comments above. First, the body ache is terrible. I live on Ibuprofen. But I do have some good things that are happening. My nose is back. I now have the nose of a St. Bernard. I can smell my hair again after shampooing.

Also, my hearing is coming back, the inside is itching! Oh to mention itching. I feel like I have a rash everywhere, especially my face. I am eating too much and having trouble sleeping but other than that I'm okay.

I am a cold turkey lady, been smoking for 20 years, not any more! amen! On day 12 and trucking. I will kick its butt!

By anon108534 — On Sep 03, 2010

Here is my experience, hope it helps someone. I am 36 years old and I had been smoking for 18 years, with no breaks. Started in college with maybe two or three cigarettes per week, and pretty soon I was buying packs and the worst it got was the last maybe four or five years where I was smoking 30 to 40 cigarettes per day. And I'm talking really strong cigarettes, 14 mg tar; 1.0 mg nicotine, no light stuff for me.

I didn't have an epiphany or somebody close fall ill due to cigarette smoking, I was just getting annoyed that I had the lung capacity of a ferret (20 years ago I was a competitive swimmer). Plus the stench. I couldn't stand it anymore.

So one Saturday morning in April, I woke up, made my morning espresso and instead of reaching for my cigarettes and lighting one up I crumbled them up and threw them away. That was it, and almost six months later, no patches, no gums, no nothing and I haven't smoked (nor had any desire to smoke).

With regards to withdrawal, I had very intense cravings for maybe four or five days. I had a very fuzzy head for about a week, occasionally even my eyesight was fuzzy and the munchies.

About 10 days after my last cigarette I started working out again, rowing machine, stationary bicycle, light jogging and resistance training. In my opinion, the secret to minimizing withdrawal symptoms: replace smoking with something. In my case I replaced it with exercise. A friend replaced it with painting, she'd paint (lousy) paintings but the point is her mind was occupied with something aside from cigarettes.

Find something that works for you and add it to your daily routine, when you're past the first couple of weeks of withdrawal, smoking will no longer be a physical necessity to feed your nicotine addiction. It will just be something that used to be a huge part of your day, and now it's gone and there's a void there. Fill that void and you will get no desire to smoke (and in my opinion, far fewer psychological manifestations of withdrawal). Good luck everybody.

By anon107700 — On Aug 31, 2010

I have been chew free for 24 days now. I chewed at least a can a day for almost 14 years. I have been having I guess almost every symptom you can think of. I have chest pains most of the day, when feels like someone is stabbing me with a knife, I have a hard time getting a full breath of air, I get tingling feelings in my legs and hands, and, oh the headaches suck.

I was dizzy all the time for the first week or so. Now I just get so fatigued that I almost have to stop everything and lie down. All the symptoms seem to come and go at any random times. I have lost almost 30 pounds because my stomach got so gassy that I could not eat as it felt like I would choke on the burp that would follow.

I have been to the E.R twice for these symptoms had Ekg, ultrasounds, stress test, holta, and just about every test you can think of, everything keeps coming back normal. My doctor tells me it is anxiety, and tried to put me on xanax, but I don't want to be on any for of mind altering drug.

I had never really put it together that it could be nicotine withdrawal. People I work with keep telling me that there is no way that it is just withdrawal and my boss even wants to send me to the Mayo clinic to get a complete workup done as they are convinced there is something wrong with me.

I'm just wondering if anyone else has been though this constantly. This is what is wrong with you from everyone around you, yes I know they want to help but it doesn't help with the anxiety. Someone please tell me that I am not losing it.

By anon107324 — On Aug 29, 2010

I quit on my 45th birthday, a week ago. Almost immediately, I got the cough, then the next day, quitters' flu, sleeplessness and runny nose, not to mention the dreaded cravings.

I imagine there are a few people who can get away without symptoms, but those must be the light smokers. I have smoked Camel cigarettes for 32 years now, graduating to the Camel Wides when those came out. Talk about a strong cigarette!

After four days,I seem to be coming out of the strong withdrawal, but the cravings remain, although not as strong. But I know those will get easier with time. Patience is the key.

By anon107113 — On Aug 28, 2010

Hey 423 you are on meds for your "issues" When you quit smoking (nicotine) your body will metabolize things differently. please tell your doctor that you have done the awesome thing of quiting smoking. that can make a big difference. your meds may react differently now that you have quit. You have done an awesome job. Don't quit your quit!

By anon106900 — On Aug 27, 2010

The stories I read here are amazing. What staying power! Congratulations, excellent! I decided to quit after smoking for 49 years. The reason was that it is just becoming too expensive so I took the easy way out: Champix.

Here's my story.

I have three grown-up sons who are doing very very well, thank god.

I have the worst relationship at home that you can imagine.

Six upper vertebrae in my upper spine have gone to hell in a hand basket so much so that muscles in my left arm have died. Have had MRIs, CAT scans, blood tests, you name it! By the way, I still work a 40 hour week.

During all this time, I have not smoked a single smoke for 14 weeks. I have had no withdrawal symptoms and no urge to smoke - amazing.

It looks as if I have almost given up the habit.

This is what happens when you are in the zombie mode.

Good luck to all of you.

By anon106847 — On Aug 27, 2010

Here's my story, I started smoking when I was 19 after my father passed away (Diabetes related). At first I smoked three packs a day because a few friends who smoked each gave me a carton!

Eventually, I stabilized around 1/2 to 1 pack a day for 15 years. I did quit for two months when I was around 24 with the help of Wellbutrin. For the last two years, I've been on/off nicotine with the patch/gum/lozenge etc.

If I weren't on some sort of NR I would light up just as easily. I was also lying to my wife about how successful I was regarding not smoking (I feel/felt horrible) but I just couldn't stop. We've been planning on having kids and she wanted us to get life insurance beforehand.

I am currently on day six without nicotine. I think that something finally just "clicked" mentally for me. I got off of it by buying multivitamins (Centrum, B-complex and high dose niacin (nicotinic acid)) and about 10 gallons of cranberry and grape juice. I locked myself in my house for four days (took off of work).

The withdrawal for me was/is horrible. The first three days I felt like I was in a heavy fog (Like the Claritin commercials), I was extremely irritable and very very sleepy. I argued with my wife a lot and even made her cry a few times for no good reason. (Sorry Hon! Thanks for putting up with me!)

I had my life insurance exam on day four and am anxious to find out if they can detect that I was a smoker. Everything I've read is that they test for Nicotine (half life of 30 minutes - two hours) or Cotinine (half life of ~20 hours). The insurance industry claims that they can detect for up to six months that you were a smoker, but everything else that I've read seems to indicate that once the metabolite cotinine is out (72-96 hours) it cannot be detected except for extremely expensive tests (hair etc).

If anyone knows that exact things that they test for or how they claim up to 6 months, I'd like to know.

Long story short, I want kids, life insurance, and a long life to enjoy. I don't want to lie to my wife, commit ins fraud, or smoke! I said before something "clicked" mentally for me, even though I still fight off the occasional craving I am 100 percent confident that I can "be a quitter" and successful ex-smoker/nicotine addict for the rest of my life.

By anon106631 — On Aug 26, 2010

I am a pack a day smoker who quit about 2.5 weeks ago. The main symptom I have been hit with is depression and apathy. I just don't seem to care about anything any more. I don't know if that is a symptom of withdrawal, or something else is wrong - I do have a history of mental illness. Any advice? I am currently on anti depressants and anxiety medication for my issues. Thank you.

By anon106317 — On Aug 25, 2010

419, I have a few tips for you. I quit smoking a couple of months ago. I also started the Eat Clean lifestyle. I would suggest looking up Tosca Reno. She has several books about what Eating Clean is, and pretty much it's exactly what it sounds like.

You eat several small meals a day with a combination of good carbs and proteins at each meal. Lots of water. You prepare your own food, and it's not the kind of diet that tastes like cardboard. I highly encourage you to try it. I was expecting headaches, but with the diet change and the exercise I didn't feel many of the typical withdrawal symptoms I had felt during previous attempts.

I also read about how nicotine reacts chemically with the bloodstream, which better prepared me for the sugar cravings because nicotine messes with your blood sugar levels. That is another thing you may want to consider talking to your doctor about.

I was vastly more successful this time around, and feel confident it will stick. Keep exercising, don't lose faith. Good luck.

By anon106027 — On Aug 23, 2010

I'm the wife of a man has quit. He was on the patch, tapering down on the three steps, for about three months. He went off the last patch three days ago. Yesterday he was angry, almost irrational acting. Scared the crap out of me. Is this what I have to look forward to for the next few weeks, or months? I never smoked, and I am so happy he finally quit (doctor's orders, by the way).

By fcderrick — On Aug 23, 2010

Yep, 419 all sounds so familiar although I smoked only for 11 years at two and 1/2 to three packs a day! I have had massive headaches and a feeling of general crap. Had x rays, ct scans and mri and all is normal.

Finally, my doctor told me that it must be my blood vessels returning to normal with the increase in oxygen and chemicals rebalancing. Pretty much, he told me it won't kill me and my body is just healing from all the abuse of the over 4,000 chemicals i was poisoning it with!

I still have bad tension headaches to this day but my lung function and other things have dramatically improved. Day 48

By anon105761 — On Aug 22, 2010

I'm a 36 year old male. I started dipping when I was 16. I also smoked cigarettes regularly from the age of 20 until I was 30. I continued dipping even when I was a regular smoker, but increased my usage of dip when I quit smoking. My dip usage reached a peak earlier this year at a steady three tins per day, as over the last five years I have worked from home and there is nothing to prevent me from using all day.

I am now in my seventh week of being nicotine free. I used Chantix for the first two weeks. I started suffering severe headaches after two or three days. I stopped taking Chantix after two weeks, but the headaches have continued. Prior to quitting, I rarely, if ever, experienced headaches.

After a month of constant headaches, I went to my doctor just to make sure there wasn't any other obvious health problem signified by the headaches. I was assured that I showed no signs of a brain tumor or other ailment, and that the headaches were probably a symptom of withdrawal.

Aspirin and ibuprofen do nothing to relieve the symptoms. I really hope the headaches do subside eventually. I cannot pin them on Chantix, but have my suspicions. I also have experienced some depression and sadness. My head feels like I am wearing a football helmet for the first few days of practice - constant tension. I cannot stop eating, and despite exercising more than normal, continue to gain weight.

I am committed to remaining nicotine free, even though the past seven weeks have been the worst seven weeks of my life. The depression is getting worse and the headaches are becoming too much to endure. I hope I make it.

For those of you who are young and think dipping is no big deal because all the other ball players do it, think again. I would not wish the pains of withdrawal upon my worst enemy.

By anon105135 — On Aug 19, 2010

It's worth it, #417!

By anon104963 — On Aug 18, 2010

I've been smoking for 16 years and have tried different things to help, i.e., chantix, patch, gum. So, Sunday, on my way home from work I smoked my last cigarette and forced myself to not stop at the gas station.

I've been smoke-free for three days now & feel like crap! It started Monday night with a mild headache and by 10 p.m., I had a massive headache, felt like I was burning up, and had muscle aches. I felt like I had the flu -- in August!

I called my doctor this morning and she informed me that it's very common for people's systems to react that way: with flu-like symptoms. It stinks. I am literally sweating bullets right now, and I feel like I can actually feel my brain moving around in my head. I woke up this morning with a sore throat on top of it all.

Someone tell me that this is worth it. Please!

By anon104763 — On Aug 18, 2010

So today is day ten and so far I have experienced some of the symptoms but not all. Mostly a nasty headache and a sort of funny dizzy feeling, plus that nagging "I just want one smoke" voice in the back of my head.

I watched my dad die of lung cancer last year (not related to smoking actually, and that really sucks)and promised him that by his birthday this year I would quit.

I started the process of quitting about two or three weeks before the "quit date" and I think that really helped. I spent a lot of time focusing on that date so my mind was on count down. I hope the importance of the date i chose to quit will always hold me to not smoking ever again.

My dad was a great guy and I would feel like I disappointed him if I started back up. I also like the feeling of empowerment by being able to just not smoke when the cravings come. It seems every day is getting a little easier for me and I wish you all good luck!

By anon104696 — On Aug 17, 2010

I've posted on here a couple of times. I'm at two months now and things are good except still for the weight -- I gained about seven pounds. I'm a small girl so this is a big issue. I'm walking and watching what I eat.

I've only had a couple of times I've wanted a ciggy, but they weren't physical cravings, just environment. I can still have my coffee in the a.m. and a rum at night or weekend and I'm good. I've read about people who have quit as long as six months still have those cravings. You just have to stay on top and be the boss. I feel empowered and strong. My husband still smokes (a lot) and it makes me feel like, "Hey, I can do something he can't!"

I'll check back in, in a month or so. Best wishes. You can do it!

By anon104441 — On Aug 16, 2010

I used Chantix - and I suffer from mild anxiety and depression that are controlled by Paxil. It was my experience that taking Chantix was well worth it for me and it was a truly amazing tool for me, once I was ready to quit. It actually helped re-wire my brain to dislike the cigarettes that I had loved so much.

I did feel some mild depression and had very vivid dreams, but for me, these were manageable side effects and were well worth it to get off of cigarettes with relative ease.

By uberwensch — On Aug 16, 2010

Folks - #382 again. Now we're at just over 11 weeks and I had to search and search the tubes for this because of all of the things I have read about quitting and the horrible effects, this is the one which makes me feel most likely to be able to keep on going, because it makes me feel like the problem isn't me and my body chemistry, but straight up humans and human body chemistry.

If this was a me problem, the solution might be to adjust myself to the world with cigarettes. Turns out it's a cigarettes problem and maybe someday, it will be gone.

Wish I could remember to post here when stuff wasn't going poorly. I'm feeling anxiety again, pretty bad (but not as bad it was at #382). For women specifically - I think nicotine helps regulate/suppress some of the effects of hormonal imbalance/change of balance experienced during PMS/perimenopause/menopause. Take away the nicotine and you're experiencing withdrawal on top of experiencing the full effects of your body's hormonal balancing act.

Anyway, I'm still not smoking. I'm only able to do it by promising myself I can have one cigarette on a regular basis once I hit a magic number of days. I have hit it once already and decided I wasn't yet able to just have one, so moved the goal day.

Sorry this is so incoherent. I come here when I am freaked out so you're seeing the effects of freak out on language.

By quitting123 — On Aug 14, 2010

I'm a 33 year old guy, and i started taking champix in February for five weeks until March. While i was on it, i experienced more physical than mental side effects, like nausea, tiredness, tight chest, difficulty breathing, foggy head, everything is unclear, numbness in my limbs to my neck with a burning sensation through my neck to my head, mood swings and sadness.

I started to feel down gradually until i started the sixth weeks i had heart palpitation, insomnia for a few weeks and even sleeping tablets (valium) couldn't put me to sleep and i lost focus and concentration.

I had paranoia for a month, and one night i had a severe panic attack. i thought i was going to die. i had to call emergency to come and take me to the hospital. i had a severe breakdown. i couldn't stop crying for no reason, which is out of character behavior.

My friends were shocked. There was no reason because everything in my life was going fine. then i stopped taking champix and i quit smoking but i felt I was going mad. my mental state has never been the same since. I suffered loss of memory for some time, lack of concentration, i had suicidal thoughts for a while, racing thoughts in my brain and a feeling of loneliness even when surrounded by many people. I couldn't do a simple daily task that i used to do without even thinking about it.

i had waves of anxiety coming and going, muscle tension, the world felt unreal around me and it was horrible. i still feel numbness in my head, and sometimes i feel my hair is hurting. If i drink light alcohol (wine or beer) and I'm not a heavy drinker it affects me more than before.

It's been six months now and I'm still suffering from depression and strange feelings that I've never felt in my life. life hasn't been the same since. i don't recommend anyone to take champix. It is a dangerous drug. You're better off smoking or quitting cold turkey.

By anon103742 — On Aug 13, 2010

I've only been a smoker for about five years and a pack a day, but last week I decided it was time to quit. I've been slowly cutting down and am now left with my last cigarette forever.

I agree with everyone. My anxiety is off the wall since cutting down and at times I look like I'm on speed. To everyone reading this, let's quit now because it's only going to get harder the longer we wait to quit!

Sorry if the post doesn't "flow." I'm having difficulty focusing on -- anything.

By anon102727 — On Aug 09, 2010

I stopped dipping five days ago, after being more and more dependent on it over the past few years to the point of never having it out of my mouth at any time during the day.

I'm having bad withdrawal symptoms, but I look at them as a wall I am breaking down. I expected it to be bad, but not like this. Even though my body is now ridding itself of the deadly chemicals I was constantly loading it up with.

Since stopping, I wake up exhausted after long periods of sleep; I have stomach pains; a foggy/cloudy head; chest tightness; various tingles in legs; extremely short fuse; anxiety/can't focus; spurts of depression; intense cravings; and am generally not myself.

The only thing that seemed to help so far was to take a walk in the woods yesterday. I don't know why, but it was like taking a break from the symptoms.

Either way though, I'm done being a slave to the industry. I will not give my life and be known as a statistic, money in someone's pocket.

By anon102561 — On Aug 08, 2010

Guys, I posted at 335. I am now four months nicotine free.

I went cold turkey, having smoked a pack a day for 28 years. I only very occasionally get the urge to smoke now. It can sometimes be really intense, but it quickly passes.

I had awful withdrawal symptoms, the two worst being severe dizziness and palpitations.

The palpitations kicked in after seven to 10 days and lasted about three weeks before tailing off.

The big surprise was the severe dizziness, and this went on for two months, and even now I get the odd reminder.

I wanted to post these experiences as some, but not all, people prior to this have mentioned these and I just wanted to make you aware that they were a major part of my quitting process.

Both of these have since passed, but I did check them out with the doc, just in case.

I'm so glad I did it, and I wish you all the best!

By anon102175 — On Aug 06, 2010

I have chewed for than 20 years and have finally decided to quit. I am on day 3, and the withdrawal symptoms seem vary. Headaches, flu like symptoms, and other symptoms. I am determine to quit. I can do this.

By anon102159 — On Aug 06, 2010

This site has been so helpful. My husband and I started 10 days ago on Chantix. He was a two-packer for 35 years and I was a one packer for 30 years. His symptoms are worse than mine.

We are still smoking two or three a day and are going to quit tomorrow. I don't know if we can do it. We have been so dependent on it through all our stressful times. Don't know if we are prepared but I know that we both want to because of health problems. Well, wish us luck.

By fcderrick — On Aug 05, 2010

yep 403: From what you described, I've felt it! I know you dipped and i smoked but the withdrawals are about the same! Good luck to you all and KTQ. Derrick

30 days, 20 hours, 34 minutes and 18 seconds smoke free. 1389 cigarettes not smoked. $441.45 and 10 days, 14 hours of your life saved.

By anon101899 — On Aug 05, 2010

I have chewed tobacco for the last 26 years. I am currently 40 and have decided to quit. After reading all these posts, it seems that nervousness and anxiety are normal withdrawal symptoms.

It's been roughly three weeks since my last chew and the feeling of anxiety is unbearable at times. Seems to make me believe i am going to have a heart attack, which compounds the anxiety. Also, i have odd sensations in my lower arms and wrists. The best way to describe it is a feeling tension and a little numbness.

I am just curious if any of you also have or have had any or all of these symptoms. It would give me some peace of mind. Thank you.

By anon101581 — On Aug 04, 2010

I gave up smoking at 10.00 am this morning, nine hours ago. No symptoms of withdrawal except I miss smoking. I loved smoking. I think with me it is more the habit of smoking that I will find hard to give up, sitting outside looking at the stars, smoking and thinking.

I gave it up for six years but started again and then gave it up for two years, started again and then gave it up for nine months, and started again. Here's hoping.

By anon101395 — On Aug 03, 2010

I'm on week nine. I started out using the patch and when it came time to step down to the 14mg, I decided to go without. I noticed some irritability and water retention.

Then I stepped on the scale and my jaw dropped! I have gained like nine pounds, but I know that at least four or five of them have to be water. They just showed up in the past three days.

All in all, I have to say at nine weeks I rarely think about a smoke. I'm too busy trying to lose weight. I've taken up walking with my youngest daughter and I love it, and she likes the time we spend together while her dad continues to puff away. Anyway, good luck to all who made a very important decision. You can do it!

By anon101367 — On Aug 03, 2010

i am an eight-hour tobacco free user. i have gone down the path of deciding to quit. usually i would go to the store to get more when i was down to my last one. i have smoked for 10 years. I'm not going back.

i just needed to know that i was not the only one right now. all your words make me want to quit more. i have a lot ahead of me but I'm going to take it one day at a time. and i am going to quit and get rid of this habit. --Firefighter78

By anon98942 — On Jul 24, 2010

Day 141, two pack a day smoker. Had all symptoms listed. You can do it! I did thought I would be the guy with the oxygen tank still smoking! The hell with that! Don't even think about it any more. This is a 38 year old guy with ADHD. You *can* do it!

By anon98895 — On Jul 24, 2010

I am on day six of being tobacco free now. I chewed tobacco for 17 years (15-32 years). The first four days were the worst. It felt like I had a stomach flu with constant diarrhea. I am past that now and feeling better.

But now I am extremely agitated and any simple stress can set me off. My girlfriend actually told me today that she liked me better while I was chewing and wishes I would start again. Horrible support! But I refuse to start again. I am saving a lot of cash by doing this and will most likely live longer because of quitting.

By fcderrick — On Jul 23, 2010

It's me again from 394 and it's been 16 more days and I'm still smoke free at 23 !

Regardless of what the experts say, the physical withdrawals last longer than three days! As my body adjusts to the new blood pressure and heart rate it does so physically, which is what is actually causing the headaches and twitching and insomnia and upset stomach and other symptoms that i am feeling, but as my body adjusts to the new pressure and rate my symptoms are less and less! So hold on to your reasons for quitting and know it will get better as your body adjusts!

I will try and post again. As I adjust more it may help some know what to possibly expect as a time frame for physical symptoms.

By anon98658 — On Jul 23, 2010

I am 37 years old and a one pack a day smoker for 20 years. I am now on my 62nd day of celebrating smoke free using my willpower.

I was in the ER two times on the first week of quitting due to panic attacks, palpitations and raised blood pressure of 190/110.

During my first day of reducing the number of tobacco sticks, i was not aware of the nicotine withdrawal yet, all i knew is all the symptoms i had experienced only caused my HBP.

Until i found this site. It's been a relief for knowing that you are not alone.

I also encountered sleepless nights, severe dizziness, nervousness and being scared about something.

At this moment, slight dizziness, slight chest pain

and occasional panic attacks still come and go. But, this is very bearable compared to the first three weeks.

I just hope and pray that this will all subside and I can have the normal life i used to. But in general, I am so proud of myself, for my two kids and wife for throwing that demon habit.

I truly believed that there's nothing impossible with God as long as you wish.

Good luck to all quitters. Don't stop believing. We can do it!

By anon97131 — On Jul 18, 2010

I am halfway through day six. I am 28 years old and have been smoking since I was 13. I am extremely sleepy and agitated. I feel like I'm jumping out of my skin. I feel like I can't soothe myself. I know I'm tough to be around.

I have made the decision to quit and I'm sticking to it. Keep up the good work, everyone! I appreciate all the support and encouragement you all have given me. This withdrawal is brutal but it's really giving me a sense of accomplishment and pride to finally be rid of this treacherous habit. Good luck each of you and hang in there. We may all gain a few pounds but it's better than suffocating to death. Much love, Desiree'

By anon95888 — On Jul 13, 2010

13-year, two or three pack a day smoker here

Well here it is, and I am a seven day nonsmoker. I experience some weird combos of withdrawals. One minute I am so tired i can't hold my eyes open and the next I'm wired and wide awake.

I've had to cut caffeine out of my diet completely as it doesn't burn off as quick since i quit and it makes the nausea and anxiety worse on me! I also stay sick at my stomach no matter what i eat. I haven't experienced the rough cough or sore throat but i have expelled plenty of toxins out my ears, nose and let's say digestive tract!

I know this is all temporary and soon i will be a healthier and better friend, father and husband, so it is all worth it. Keep up the fight and thanks everyone for their posts. They have all helped me to hold my thoughts and stand my ground. I am and always will be a non smoker!

By pixie — On Jul 04, 2010

I'm now on day eight of cold turkey, no patches or nicotine substitute, and each day has brought a different withdrawal symptom.

I smoked for 40 years, and have copd and emphysema, and even in the eight days i feel so much better. I've gone through the sickness thing and what i expelled from my inside was unbelievable. It was fluorescent green, that I've never seen the likes of! Obviously toxins. That happened on day six, but if there's more to come then so be it, as i want this poison gone from my body.

Today I'm feeling anxious, but i look at things on a daily basis; tomorrow's challenge may be something else, but it's another day nearer to getting to where i want to be.

I wish everyone on this site, and whoever I've come across for reference and to share the experience, all the very best of luck.

Just hang in there. No doubt I'll be back to post again. Best wishes, "pixie" hats.

By anon92897 — On Jun 30, 2010

The posts are a great help. Stay with your plan, and if you fall off of a horse, what do you do right away? Get right back on! You can do it.

By anon92896 — On Jun 30, 2010

Today is my fourth day of going cold turkey. I've smoked since I was 15 and now am 29 years old. I normally smoked less than 10 cigarettes a day with some exceptions of parties and long sleepless days, but it usually works out well.

I didn't experience much withdrawal syndromes other than increased appetite and tingly feelings. I have come to a conclusion that I was merely addicted to the habit more than nicotine itself. My worst times are 11 a.m. (where I'd normally be waiting for lunch so that I can have my cigarette), and 4 p.m. (waiting to get off work so that I can have a cigarette).

I always tried to limit how much I smoked at work. I feel awkward when I'm around my family as well. But what alleviated it very well was that I have a bottle of beer during dinner and it makes me forget the nervousness. I think I was always hesitant to quit not because of the withdrawal, but actually being afraid of the thought that I will never have a cigarette again for the rest of my life. That fear seems to be passing away as I'm going onto my fifth day of cold turkey.

I'm determined this time because I'm actually doing it for myself and nobody else. That, and the fact that I had a pain in my right lung (I believe) that came and gone before. But it feels like it has subsided now. When I make it to three months of being smoke-free, I'll probably schedule an appointment with a doctor to make sure I didn't cause any damage from the bad habit. I wish you all well.

By anon92501 — On Jun 28, 2010

I'm 27 and I've been smoking about a pack a day for seven years. I've temporarily given smoking up a few times, but never successfully (and never for more than a month or two).

I've tried cold turkey and the patch, and although the patch was promising in that it completely removed the physical cravings for me, I erroneously decided to fast-track it and only spend a week on each of the three stages. Needless to say, this failed for me.

Now, as of today, I'm trying the patch again, and this time it will hopefully work. I'm going to follow the directions properly and not allow myself to give in to temptation. The only problem is I don't have air conditioning, and even sitting around in my boxers, I'm still too hot and I keep sweating the patch off!

I finally found a spot on my neck that's remained fairly dry; however, I now look like a big idiot with a giant plastic square on his neck and I'm too embarrassed to leave the house. LOL

By anon91808 — On Jun 24, 2010

I am 40 years old and this is at least the 10th time I am quitting. Having read the posts of people's struggles (or not) with nicotine I would like to emphasize that nicotine is a very powerful drug and withdrawal symptoms are very real.

If you have not experienced acute withdrawal, symptoms count yourself blessed. Nicotine bombards the dopamine receptors in your brain. Take this away and besides for all the other hormonal changes in your body (nicotine triggers adrenaline too, amongst others), and depression is almost sure to follow.

So, whatever it is that works for you, do it. I quit about five months ago for about two and half months and writing the finals for my degree I relapsed and started again.

Four weeks of smoking later, I have quit again. Because my previous quit was the worst I have ever experienced (severe depression, lethargy, crying spells, suicidal thoughts) I was more prepared this time. I have taken a couple of days off work to go cold turkey on nicotine. Having previously quit for four years using the gums, I am apprehensive of a double withdrawal, but NRT does help lots of people, and me in the past.

On my last quit my doctor prescribed Zyban (a week into that quit I was going out of my mind and needed medical help) which helped with the depression, being a dopamine re-uptake inhibitor it increases the levels of this vital hormone. So, I started the Zyban a couple of days before cessation, made sure to smoke a bit less than my usual pack a day before quitting and had the time off work (away from temptation and stressors) to get through the first 72 hours nicotine free. Lots of green tea, water, fruit and some treats have eased the transition.

I would also advise a mild sleeping tablet to help with the disturbed sleep. For the physical symptoms, I marvel at how the tingling shows improved circulation, the dizziness more oxygen to the brain, the coughing how my body is ridding itself of toxins.

Fellow quitters, this is a very tough journey but the destination, good health, is so worth it. More importantly, don't be discouraged by people saying this or that doesn't work. Whatever works for you works and in this battle we need all the help we can get. Use what is available to you, be kind to yourself and you will have victory! Good luck all, Kid

By anon90924 — On Jun 18, 2010

I have smoked since I was 14 or 15 years old. I am 30 now and only weigh 102 pounds as it is. I knew I had to quit smoking for my own health but at every attempt, I failed. I never made it past 10 hours. The cravings were too brutal. I gave in every time.

Chantix didn't work. Cold turkey wasn't happening for me. I was about to just give up but then my beloved grandma who has smoked for 50 years was diagnosed with lung cancer. Hearing her fate, I decided to never smoke again. I went and bought the patches three days ago. I haven't had a cigarette since. I am on the 21 mg and plan on stepping down gradually. I never thought I could go more than a few hours without a cigarette but here I am, working on Day four.

It is still hard because I miss the habit. I enjoyed smoking but since I have quit, I am having a stuffy nose, tightness in the chest dizziness, and tiredness. All symptoms that my body is healing itself. As much as I miss the habit, I vow to never go back to it. It simply isn't worth suffering over in the end.

My main trigger points when I want to scream because I want one so bad is right after I eat, so I now go for a walk, anything to keep busy and in a few minutes, and the urge to pick one up has passed. It is truly a battle but definitely one worth fighting. Good luck everyone.

By anon90790 — On Jun 18, 2010

i quit about 10 months ago and i still crave and i feel sometimes that i will have an heart attack. is this normal? my feet get cold and i feel really weird sometimes. I'm not sure is this part of withdrawals or something else. --wowlegs

By anon90353 — On Jun 15, 2010

92 days cold turkey. now gotta kick the Mountain Dew habit. I feel so much better.

By anon90038 — On Jun 14, 2010

Day 13, and it is getting better! I'm thankful for this site it has really helped.

By anon88885 — On Jun 07, 2010

120 days! Woo-hoo! Hey everyone, I was #332, and thought I'd check back in. It gets better folks, it really does, hang in there. I finally feel great.

By anon88880 — On Jun 07, 2010

On Day 10. Some days are better than others - today is a bad one. Have a just over one year old and he's been teething and was just weaned the day I quit smoking, so day 10 of his withdrawal (from nursing - everything I could find indicates he hasn't been getting enough nicotine in his bloodstream to actually react to - but who knows), too, I guess.

I didn't sleep so I called in sick to work just to grab a nap and try to relax and of course after I got a couple of hours sleep I have been cycling in and out of anxiety and depression - worried about everything and freaking out, crying for no reason and glad no one is around to see it.

I am letting my husband pick the baby up from the sitter and everything feels unreal and horrible. In order to grab the last little bit of nap I had to calm myself down enough to breathe right to sleep and so I imagine myself sitting outside and smoking a cigarette and reading a book. I thought the physical withdrawal was supposed to be over three or four days after quitting, but the psychological stuff is causing physical effects. I feel like I'm losing my mind.

By anon88598 — On Jun 06, 2010

Day 18. I had been a smoker for the last twenty four years, reasonably heavy- a pack a day. I feel pretty crappy today -- sore throat and flu like symptoms. Am absolutely convinced I am now a non smoker. best of luck to all.

By anon88402 — On Jun 04, 2010

poster 363 here again -

am on day 38 and still going strong, although not really very happy. Am not sleeping again - am tired, but keep going. I am still taking the lithium orotate and it has helped immensely. I also found taking 30mg of zinc quite calming, and also magnesium supplements. I am determined to do this without anti-depressants. I did have a meltdown at a party last weekend and I cry a lot, but I am feeling more comfortable without smoking every day. I really don't think I could have done this without the supplements though. I have read the depression can go on for awhile. I have had an odd thing with my arm as well - I get this intense itching on my left arm at night but there is no insect bite or rash and I am not using any NRT patch or anything. Really weird - the pain and itching is unbearable!

By anon88365 — On Jun 04, 2010

Awesome! Every one of you is awesome!

"Whether you think you can or think you

can't - you are right." -- Henry Ford

"You gain strength, courage, and confidence by every experience in which you really stop to look fear in the face. You must do the thing which you think you cannot do." 
-- Eleanor Roosevelt

Three fantastic cheers to all of you!

Never, never, never give in! - Expat - California, USA

By anon88224 — On Jun 03, 2010

Day 81: Getting much better with fewer side effects.

By anon87381 — On May 30, 2010

It's comforting to know that many people struggle as I do, in the face of this vicious addiction.

My girlfriend contracted lung cancer and died last year aged 50. Result = epiphany!

I am nicotine-free for the first time in 33 years.(Inhalator 10 mgs only for 53 days and then cold turkey for seven days and counting).

If I can do it, you can do it.

Good Luck!

By anon87101 — On May 28, 2010

Quit cold turkey 82 days ago and have gone through all of the symptoms mentioned in the previous posts.

Don't know whym but my cravings got worse a few days ago and I also feel depressed. Sometimes it feels like a cigarette would change everything and I would be fine if I smoked.

I know that nicotine is trying every possible thing to gain me back. No way. I dumped it and there is no turning back. I will not let nicotine abuse me any more, and no matter what the price is, I will choose freedom.

By anon86101 — On May 23, 2010

Sad to admit but smoking for 40 years, and finally quit one month ago cold turkey. That was the easy part! I instantly put on weight, I take a daily nap about 4 p.m., and want to eat everything in sight! Funny, but I see some very subtle changes in my body. Definitely the feeling of bloat, but more than that -- like a fullness I've never felt before. I know this might sound weird but urinating is also different.

I have made up my mind that I will never do this again, and for those of you having trouble, you have to make up your mind that failing is not an option. Our minds are very powerful equipment that we carry around with us. Use it to your advantage.

Choose to quit. I was a fool for too long!

By anon85952 — On May 23, 2010

I am on day four. I have smoked for 20 years on and off. Quit several times due to colds or in a better place in life. Ironically, I was a national competitive body builder. Man, it stunk hiding this addiction. Hope I can do this.

I miss smoking and it's been a friend for too long. I am feeling a bit sick and my throat hurts, voice rough, tight chest. Hope this goes away soon.

I've been working out moderately for 45 minutes a day. Really helps and I recommend it.

Good luck all.

By anon85748 — On May 21, 2010

I'm on my eighth day after quitting cold turkey. i feel fine all day then when i sit down with my family or something for dinner i get dizzy, anxious and short of breath due to the agitation. anybody else get this?

By anon85420 — On May 20, 2010

I'm on day four of cold turkey. I truly had no idea of the power of nicotine. The first three days weren't bad. I slept a lot. Now it seems i cannot sleep at all.

I'm really tired but within a matter of minutes I just wake back up. No matter. Reading some of your stories has inspired me. I will not give up. Thanks to all of you. You all have given me strength to go for day five.

By anon84986 — On May 18, 2010

My story goes like this: I wanted to quit after 20 years and did so for a full year. But, every day I wanted a cigarette, I just couldn't shake the craving and bingo -- started back up and have smoked another 10 years since.

Now I'm trying the e-cigarette and lowering the amount of nicotine with each cartridge purchase until I get to the non-nicotine cartridge. I don't know, maybe it's the actual inhaling. So far the e-cig has helped tremendously, yesterday I only smoked two real cigarettes (down from 30 per day) and smoke the e cig four or five puffs every hour or so. We'll see.

By anon84829 — On May 17, 2010

#366 on week nine, 64 days, I still feel like you. I'm glad you put that on the board. I guess for me 20 years of smoking really had my body torn up. I do feel much better but still a little off a times.I think people go back to smoking to make themselves feel better. Tough it out. It's worth it. Quit cold turkey 64 days ago. 38 years old

By anon84530 — On May 16, 2010

I am on week 11 of an 18-year, three can a week addiction, and the withdrawal symptoms are something I've never experienced, at least not for any long amount of time.

I am still feeling dizzy occasionally, shortness of breath is still common (feeling like I'm winded). Is this still happening to anyone, especially after almost three months? I am still starting to feel a little paranoid about it, however, i heard people experience different withdrawal symptoms.

By anon84273 — On May 14, 2010

Going cold turkey! The cravings are intense and I think I have every single withdrawal symptom! This is the hardest thing I have ever done, and yet there is nothing in the world that makes me want to go back to my old ways!

This journey is teaching me the power of my own mind. It's weird that my mind can be in such conflict with itself. I am one less smoker in the world!

By anon84011 — On May 13, 2010

I am now into week three of going cold turkey after 55 years of heavy smoking. I felt OK for the first fortnight, but now I am suffering acute withdrawal symptoms. You name it, I got it.

The worst part is the acute depression. I just want to sit down and burst into tears. How I am managing to concentrate to write is beyond me. Some nine years ago I gave up alcohol completely, going from alcoholism to complete sobriety overnight.That was a cakewalk. I intend to see this through, as I want my life back.

By anon83999 — On May 13, 2010

Day 15 of my cold turkey quit here. Never thought I'd manage it. Was chewing nicorette for 10 years, 20 pieces a day and smoking about 7-10 roll-ups on top of that.

Every time I quit before I would get a panic attack so severe at the 24 hour mark I would just give in - thought I was going to die. This time I started dosing myself with an OTC supplement designed to raise serotonin levels (lithium orotate 5mg/day) and also read about it online. Basically, I finally understood all about nicotine addiction, and how withdrawal is only temporary, and there is no such thing as one cigarette - it is all or nothing.

I didn't sleep the first three nights but was armed with ambien which helped immensely. The fourth night I slept just taking some melatonin. I had incredible muscle tension in my jaw and shoulder the first week. I was so dizzy I could not drive my car - I still am very dizzy now into week three.

The cravings were managed OK because I knew why I was doing the quit this time. No arguing in my head. Last week I started to have heartburn a lot, but that is now diminishing. About a week into the quit I started to really feel very depressed and angry, but yesterday I actually felt happier than usual.

The muscle tension has eased up and there are times when I feel gloriously loose and relaxed - the first time in 15 years (I have smoked/chewed for 15 solid years).

My advice to those who really feel they can not get past the first 24 hours is to go to a health shop and ask for some supplements to help raise serotonin levels. This really helps with the food as well - I haven't been eating non-stop or anything.

I got the most horrific migraine I have ever experienced on day six of my quit. I was vomiting continuously and in incredible pain. It came on after drinking coffee. Be careful if you are drinking caffeine, as it can act as a vasodilator as well as a vasoconstrictor, which can bring on migraines. Good luck.

By anon83487 — On May 11, 2010

I know I'm just a newbie, but I'm on day three. Before I actually stopped smoking, I went and got me a couple of worry stones. I've been smoking for 38 years. I thought that I had done well by cutting down to four or five cigs a day for the last couple of years.

I pat myself on the back for that choice, but smoking less seemed to cause me more health issues. I have been in and out of the hospital for heart, breathing, dizziness, numbness in lips arms and fingers, etc.

It finally dawned on me to completely quit after my 10 year old son told his daddy that he did not think I was going to be around to see him graduate from school. Mind you now that they were on their way to the hospital, after my husband had received a call from my job. We have four boys, ages 10, 15, 26, and 32. I went through raising three and it took my youngest to make me care about myself!

It's not easy, as you all know by your words, but the support from people is really great. Of course, it would be better if they would just stop asking and reminding me about those darn nasty, addictive things, but they mean well!

I keep my worry stone in my pocket, if it is not in my hand. I find that my hands and fingers need something to do, especially when I'm driving. Traffic is my weakest point, but my worry stone is getting plenty of attention. It's keeping me occupied at this point.

I have also found it very helpful to put a tablespoon of vinegar in my bottle of water. Every time I feel that I want or could use a puff, I drink half of the bottle. It tastes nasty, but that's the point that I'm trying to tell myself. It also helps clear toxins from your body, so no harm is done. Just a nasty taste. I wish all of you the very best, along with myself.

By anon83389 — On May 10, 2010

Hey ex-smokers! I'm on day four of no smoking. I was never a "heavy" smoker and generally smoked fewer than 10 cigarettes a day with the exception of a few lapses.

The thing is with nicotine is that it is a very powerful drug, and when under its control it is simple to rationalize your addiction to it. In reality, there is no good reason to be smoking. Some say that smoking reduces stress - it doesn't. A smoker's blood pressure is chronically higher (about 10-20 percent higher) than that of a non-smoker. The feeling of stress relief comes from the relief from nicotine withdrawal that occurs between cigarettes.

There are many other negative effects of smoking that work in this same manner - e.g. appearing to be positive.

On day four, I am feeling a little cloudy here - my temper is short, I have muscle pain and tension in my arms chest and legs. I am tired, yet cannot sleep. So far I have found it helpful to drink tea, take vitamins, go on walks and stretch, talk to everybody about not smoking, and most importantly just have fun with it.

I realize that I have been trashing my body with nicotine and countless other chemicals for years for a bit of fake pleasure and a lot of extra money and stress. It is only realistic to expect a month or two feeling awful withdraw symptoms from doing something unhealthy.

Nicotine cessation is both a process and a lifestyle. When the demon of a nicotine craving or a withdraw effect comes treat is a new experience - embrace it as an excuse to exercise control over yourself.

Most importantly, be safe in life, whatever you do and wherever you go. Best of luck.

By jasonjim — On May 08, 2010

For about six weeks prior to February, I had a bad cough and brought up a lot of greenish-brown phlegm, which indicates quite a bit of infection on the lungs. I should have gone to the doctor and got some antibiotics to combat the infection. But no, I didn't, and the coughing just became more and more severe. Finally, at 4 a.m in the middle of February, I woke from sleeping drenched in sweat and coughing.

I struggled to the bathroom, and realized at that point that in between coughs I could hardly breathe. Something drastic had occurred. To make this story a little shorter the next afternoon I was admitted to hospital with a 100 percent collapsed right lung. It took three very uncomfortable, painful weeks to inflate the lung. Of course no smoking while all of this was going on.

They put me on the 21mg Nicoderm patch, which eased withdrawal quite a bit. After 50 years of smoking about 40 cigarettes a day, I needed some help. I used this traumatic event to make the decision to quit smoking even after I was sent home. So I embarked on the Nicoderm 14mg patch when they said, and later the tiny 7mg patch.

It has now been almost three months since that night, without smoking. I have had some serious withdrawal symptoms since I stopped the patches. Lots of gas and bloating right up to my neck it seemed like. Aches and pains like the flu. Feelings of exhaustion and weakness. Every old sport injury I ever had seemed to inflame, especially baseball injuries to my fingers.

Pain in the lower back and upper legs, so bad walking was difficult. Breathing continued to be less than ideal because of lots of mucous still in the lungs from all those years of smoking.

Of course there were some positives as well. My skin is softer and more healthy, as is my hair. My eyesight has improved to such an extent that it appears I will have to have a revised prescription done one of these days. I sleep more soundly and wake up more refreshed.

I gained about 10 pounds or so which I needed because I was too skinny. So that is my story. I hope it helps somebody who is reading these blogs, as other blogs on this site have helped me.

But one thing I have learned--withdrawal symptoms can persist and be painful for three months at least. Some of my friends have suffered their worst symptoms in the sixth month. Everybody is different, some people have it easier than others. Just don't expect that the worst will be over after two weeks or so. This is a fallacy which has been promoted by people who have never smoked a cigarette in their life.

By anon83010 — On May 08, 2010

Almost 48 hours now since my last cigarette - quitting cold turkey after 34 years of a minimum of a pack a day. Feeling some tingling in my right foot on occasion - but not much else physically. I'm just hoping that I can fight through the mental addiction!!

By anon82513 — On May 06, 2010

Thanks for keeping this wonderful board. It took me two days to read all what was written here. I quit three weeks ago after smoking 1 pack for 17+ years. I just wonder how long it will take to have myself back. Always tired, fast heart beat, not sleeping well, panic attack, sadness..

I do not feel like smoking any more since day seven (I quit cold turkey), but I want my body back.

Good luck all, it will pass and you will be reward, yourself healthy back. Dav.

By anon82175 — On May 04, 2010

I'm 25, and originally I smoked a pack a day for four years, then chewed and smoked for a year, and the past two years just chewed a can a day.

I'm on my third day of quitting cold turkey. It's the first time in six years I've gone past 24 hours without nicotine.

My mind feels cloudy and disorganized. However, I've been very calm, nicer to my co-workers, and gaining more energy than usual. I'm convinced I'm done.

I give props to those quitting smoking cold turkey. It was harder for me to quit smoking while still being allowed to chew than it has been so far to quit chewing without another nicotine source.

Any others switch from smoking to chew and then quit chew find it easier than trying to quit smoking?

By anon81884 — On May 03, 2010

Day 49 and it's better and better every day.

By anon81414 — On May 01, 2010

Day 15 cold turkey, no "cheating" this time (YET). I was led to believe that the "physical" would be over by now. Freaking liars! I cannot concentrate, I have chronic diarrhea, extreme fatigue, muscle pains, headaches and dizziness when I stand up.

I keep telling myself that if this crap doesn't stop by tomorrow, I'm lighting up. Hot flash right now. Damn cigarettes. 34 years at >pack a day.

By anon80950 — On Apr 29, 2010

I been smoking for 21 years and have tried several times to quit but failed. I tried again cold turkey this time and has been successful for the six weeks.

I have anxiety and depression to the point where every little things get to me. I can't sleep, wake up several times a night with anxiety attack, and I break out in sweats. My mouth and tongue feel funny.

I eat more than before and other times I feel like throwing up. The first few weeks my fingers feel tingling and my neck and shoulder are achy. It's so hard. Does anyone have the funny feeling of the tongue and gum?

By anon80603 — On Apr 28, 2010

Nicotine has proved to be evil. There is something evil in it; it's more then natural -- it's not natural. these symptoms were designed to happen to us, so that we can give up and continue smoking. But we won't give up. We are going to fight, and keep fighting.

I used to have a saying to all my friends when they used to beg me to quit smoking. i used to say, "I won't quit smoking because I'm not a quitter, and i will beat any disease because I'm a fighter."

Now i say, "I won't give up until smoking is just a figment of my imagination, a book closed never to reopen. I won't quit on myself. I will fight."

Good luck everyone.

By anon80210 — On Apr 26, 2010

I was always tired and took lots of naps. Sleep at night was tough waking up back to sleep. It will get normal after three or four weeks. Concentration is my biggest problem now backed a 22 foot trailer through shop door, among other stupid things I would have never done! I thought I was saving money by quitting. but physically I feel much better. Six weeks, two days.

By anon80150 — On Apr 26, 2010

Day 42 still a little constipated and dreams of cigs but really not too bad. Stopped cold turkey. 38 years old, two packs per day for 20 years. Also still feel a little "loose" at times but physically feel much better. I hope this feeling does pass like all the other symptoms.

By anon80058 — On Apr 26, 2010

I have not smoked for six weeks now. I was on the patch until two days ago and now I am trying without it. I feel okay, but at night I have terrible muscle twitching. Is this normal? I have not been able to find a reference saying that muscle twitching is a symptom of nicotine withdrawal.

By anon80019 — On Apr 25, 2010

Smoker for 10 years, non stop! About 15 packs a day.

Well, I haven't smoked in two full months, but i used the super cigarette as an aid, and couldn't have done without it. I'm in the process of quitting the super cigarette.

The first two to four weeks, were amazing, feeling the air coming back, using my body in ways I could not before, worth the pain!

The next weeks five to seven, were easier, lesser cravings and fewer super cigi drags. But now that I quit the nicotine, the mental pressure is so intense. I feel anxiety and pain. But I am keeping my willpower up. It's hard but doable!

By anon78791 — On Apr 20, 2010

Day 17 of not smoking. Throughout the last two weeks I've been in some pretty severe pain in arms/neck. Now I'm getting tingling throughout whole body. I'm extremely paranoid but I know it has to be the smoking since I had a heart test in January and it did well. Also can't sleep well.

By anon78648 — On Apr 19, 2010

I've been chewing tobacco for five years and decided to try to quit. Three days after my last use, i began to get sweats and tingling in the face/hands followed by some really bad nausea. Is this normal? I feel better now but constantly feel pretty tired and my hands continue to tingle every once in a while.

By anon78125 — On Apr 17, 2010

Day 12 of no cigs. I smoked for 26 years. I am going through the physical symptoms though.

I am exhausted after work and napping instead of sleeping through the night, recently started with the "smokers flu". Am on Chantix and it helps tremendously. Before I quit I picked a quit date. That helped prepare my mind for the day that I said goodbye to my "loyal friends".

I also prayed to God for the strength to remain loyal to the decision I made.

I prayed for the courage and strength not to buy any more cigarettes and asked for help to endure the physical withdrawal symptoms. As with many other posts I have read, the freedom and happiness I feel at the end of each day having not smoked is simply fabulous. This motivates me.

We all need to keep taking it one day at a time and sometimes one minute at a time. It took time to become a smoker, it will take time to become an ex-smoker.

Have faith because with God, no thing is impossible.

Stay focused on the goal and endure!

By anon77833 — On Apr 15, 2010

One more thing I forgot to add on to post 343. I read Allan Carr's book, "The Easy Way to Quit Smoking" and I highly recommend it.

It's written for people who have not stopped smoking yet, but I read it after I quit and still found it very helpful.

It focuses on the brainwashing aspects of smoking and it changes the way you view smoking. Very much worth the $15!

By anon77621 — On Apr 15, 2010

I'm with everyone here. I'm 25 years old and have only smoked for five years, no more than a pack a day (which is still awful). I used to be so healthy.

Anyway, I've "quit" smoking for five days now. I'll admit, I've smoked two in this time, but down from 20 to less than one a day is much better, but not there yet.

I'm using 4MG gum to help ease the cravings and it helps. Today I only had two pieces, but felt fine with just that. Before it's been super cravings and needing the gum, and today I didn't even feel the urge but had a scary night. I went to sleep normally but woke up feeling my heart throb a little bit.

I think being worried about something major being wrong I had a panic attack and felt like going to the ER.

I am not ruling out any other more serious condition, but I can confirm that I've had irregular heart rhythm and panic attacks since cutting back 99 percent from smoking.

For those who haven't quit, are planning to, or in the same boat as me, quit!

You don't want to have the uneasy route of wondering if something is so wrong with you over something as stupid as a cigarette.

By anon77491 — On Apr 14, 2010

Today is 2 months of being smoke free! My first post was 308 and today I am happy to report that it does get a lot easier after the first month. I think about smoking a lot less and the cravings only happen once in awhile.

It continues to be a challenge that my husband still smokes. I was also tested when I went to my hometown in Louisiana for a visit. It was very hard to be back in an area where all of my friends smoke and a lot more people smoke in general.

Everywhere we went out, like bars and casinos, we were in a smoke filled room. I don't know how anyone can grow up there and not be a smoker! I know if I can do this, then anyone can do it. Keep up the hard work everyone!

By anon77072 — On Apr 13, 2010

I am a five-month quitter now, cold turkey-without any help. Everything is normal except the desire to eat more food and reminding myself that I am a quitter.

My withdrawal has taken more time, as I was using chewing tobacco for 20 years and the intensity (30-35 days) was very high. (Refer to my earlier postings # 291 (three months) # 257 (52 days) and # 236 (30 days). I was swallowing the stuff.

I had gone through all kind of symptoms mentioned within different postings. I would like to mention that some people are associating use of chantix with suicidal thoughts, but I felt them without using the chantix or any other thing. Probably it is part and parcel of withdrawal.

Now everything seems to be OK. Still after a good meal my mind goes for those days, but these feelings never intensify. I can now deal with anger, sit back and feel happiness without use of nicotine.

More than that, my work involves more of analysis and writings, and I can do these things without involving any kick back of chew.

Best wishes for the entire quitter fraternity. Keep it up. The task is not as difficult as it looks. Believe me, the life after quitting is far better than an addict in any sense. However be prepared for four to six months!

By anon76865 — On Apr 12, 2010

O.K. One week cold turkey. Tried patches and Wellbutrin nothing really lasted and just decided to do no help systems. I went to an online support site and read all about the symptoms and every time I experienced one I would do a mental check off that I was through another step.

I even got canker sores on my tongue and gums. thank god they only lasted three days. Check another symptom off. I do take three Advil every day, which helps with a lot of the pains.

When I get that craving that it's time to smoke I go, oh yeah, I don't do that and take a deep breath.

Walking does help and just remember every day off is one less crappy day you have to do over if you slip.

By anon76715 — On Apr 11, 2010

I'm a non-smoker and that's that. I don't bother about words and just concentrate on the good things about becoming a non-smoker. I related the habit to being in an abusive relationship and got out! When you've had enough you'll do likewise, that is if you are lucky.

By anon76399 — On Apr 10, 2010

I am 60 years old and have smoked for 46 years. On my fourth day without a cigarette. Don't feel too bad.

By anon76118 — On Apr 09, 2010

I have been reading these posts and I see everyone is doing a great job.

If I may, I am 42 years old and started smoking at 14 years old. I quit six years ago and I would love to say the feeling is amazing and all of you are very tough to go through something as difficult as the slashing of an addiction.

You all have a lot to look forward to and the feeling of being healthy is amazing.

Keep up the great work and remember every time you come to an obstacle: Obstacles are those frightful things you see when you take your eyes off your goal. ~Henry Ford. Great job everyone!

By anon76061 — On Apr 08, 2010

I haven't had a dip in two weeks. Sometimes I feel foggy and very twitchy (forehead and eyebrow movement).

Headaches all over my head especially the size of a ring about as big around as a can of pop on the very top. They usually last for about 10-20 minutes. Anyone feel like this?

By anon75776 — On Apr 07, 2010

I was a pack a day smoker for 14 years. Today marks my 14th day without smoking and it's hard as heck. I started using the patch and chewing the gum at the same time to cope with the initial withdrawal and just recently took myself off the patch and am only on the 2mg gum now (So almost 0 nicotine).

The hardest part of all of this is the feelings of depression and anxiety that I hope will go away soon.

By anon75751 — On Apr 07, 2010

Just finishing day seven. I took my son to the movies and a pizza simply because I could now afford to. The extra cash is great.

The thought of going back on the smokes terrifies me so I'll carry on fighting. Good luck to all you guys!

By anon74560 — On Apr 02, 2010

I've been nicotine free for one month today (dip). Still having some weird symptoms. Hard to breathe sometimes, dizzy at time, and seem to get "worked up" easy. Though I'd be done with this by now. Hope it doesn't last too much longer.

By anon74411 — On Apr 02, 2010

I am 37 and started smoking when I was 17. For last five years. I was 20 a day smoker. Today is my 17th day smoke free and right now I am at home and not working in office. I am feeling very horrible and finding it difficult to get cigarettes out of my mind. Don't know when it is going to get better but reading comments on this site has made me determined to keep cigarettes away. Thank you all.

By anon74387 — On Apr 01, 2010

To 329: I'm a (oops) I was a dipper too, 30 years, from 15 to 45. I quit in February, and went on the patch. Worked my way off of everything a couple of weeks ago. I agree, the panic attacks and feeling like my bp was through the roof was the worst. I think I went through every symptom there is, and then I even made a few new ones up!

Congrats to all and thanks for all the posts, it really helped.

By anon73951 — On Mar 30, 2010

Hello again, it was me @319. Today is the 22nd day of cold turkey.

Yesterday was the most difficult day up until now. I had to spend time with smoker friends and they did not seem to care or even notice the great effort I've gone to in order to quit cigarettes. One of them smoked nine, and the other smoked six cigarettes in two hours and I was exposed to it.

At a certain moment, all I could do was focus on not smoking. I could not concentrate on anything else. I don't even remember what the conversation was all about.

Apart from the physical symptoms what disturbs me most is my inability to concentrate. It feels like I lost part of my IQ after quitting nicotine. I miss my clever self, yet I have to admit that I would prefer not being that clever to a lung cancer, and that is what keeps me going. Good luck everyone!

By amypollick — On Mar 29, 2010

No 329: Congratulations on getting off the dip and staying off it! Just FYI: My dad was a basketball coach. Both of his brothers coached. None of them ever chewed, dipped or smoked. They didn't drink, either. So you can absolutely be a great coach and not dip or chew.

Plus, think of the role model you can be to the young people whose lives you will influence! You can be an example to those who have started dipping that you can quit, and can be a good example to those who don't, perhaps influencing them to never start.

You cannot underestimate the influence a coach or teacher can have on his/her students. Some of your students may have never had a positive male role model in their lives. This is a golden opportunity for you to make a truly positive difference! Congratulations and keep fighting the good fight!

By anon73506 — On Mar 27, 2010

Posted earlier (304). On day 35 now and still have 3/4 can of dip in drawer where I keep my car keys to remind me that I have the "Willpower". 35 days 100 percent free!

I am still having the tightness every now and then, kind of ran the constipation gauntlet, and now the diarrhea. The panic/anxiety attacks were the worst.

Finally, I had to man up and admit I needed help with those. Still concerned that my BP and heart rate is too high, but having no difficulty mowing lawn or disc golfing for four hours! Ready for all this to be done and this will become my own personal "Crusade" as I work in an environment where dipping or chewing is expected (coaching)!

By stretch1one — On Mar 27, 2010

Almost four months now smoke free, but i still can't break free of the patch. I'm on the last level now, 7 mg, and afraid to go off them.

i don't sleep with them now. I only use them during the day.

When i talked to my doc about them he said don't worry -- better to be on them than smoking two packs a day for 25 years. just don't pressure yourself, he said.

Well I hope to get the courage to get off them for good -- just afraid of any withdrawal like I had the first month of patching. i don't want to go there again.

Anyway everyone, hang in there. The withdrawals get better. Besides, you just have to get used to your new body. This may just be how it is to be "normal."

By anon73247 — On Mar 26, 2010

I am so happy to have found this site. I am 38. I smoked from 16-19 years old and then from 30 to 38 - about 10 a day. I quit 18 days ago.

I have always wanted to stop and I stopped because I had a bad chest cold and couldn't smoke. However, because I couldn't smoke, I suffered from incredible anxiety, panic attacks and depression.

It is a lot better now and, thanks to this site, it is a huge relief to know it's not just me. Thanks.

By busbus1221 — On Mar 25, 2010

I am not smoking right now. I started smoking ten years ago (I was 21) because it was the worst thing that I could think to do to myself.............. that wouldn't kill me- right away. I was experiencing a period of PTSD and had become severely suicidal. I hated smoking since I was a child- both my parents smoked and I hated it. I started smoking, hated it, became addicted to it, and then loved it. My lungs began to hurt every morning along with other concerning issues. I still loved to smoke. That to me is the definition of addiction. "I could quit if I wanted to, I smoke cause I like to."

I am having a hard time, it has been a week and a day. I am having a hard time.

I have noticed something of a dispute about the validity of withdrawal symptoms. This is what I have to say.

Some people can have a drink with dinner every night for twenty years but they are not an alcoholic

Some people can NOT have a drink with dinner for twenty years and be an alcoholic.

I have an addictive personality

my wife does not

medication has always had a very strong effect on me, even Tylenol.

Is my withdrawal real? I don't know. But I know I have never lifted my hand in anger to anyone. Last night I dragged my wife down the stairs and out of the house for no reason that seems important now. Physically I have noticed my heart beating very fast and I am sweating so much it is not even funny. My face is also very red. I also feel like my mind is in a fog.

By anon73086 — On Mar 25, 2010

I am not smoking right now. I started smoking ten years ago (I was 21) because it was the worst thing that I could think to do to myself.............. that wouldn't kill me- right away. I was experiencing a period of PTSD and had become severely suicidal. I hated smoking since I was a child- both my parents smoked and I hated it. I started smoking, hated it, became addicted to it, and then loved it. My lungs began to hurt every morning along with other concerning issues. I still loved to smoke. That to me is the definition of addiction. "I could quit if I wanted to, I smoke cause I like to."

I am having a hard time, it has been a week and a day. I am having a hard time.

I have noticed something of a dispute about the validity of withdrawal symptoms. This is what I have to say.

Some people can have a drink with dinner every night for twenty years but they are not an alcoholic

Some people can NOT have a drink with dinner for twenty years and BE an alcoholic.

I have an addictive personality

my wife does not

medication has always had a very strong effect on me, even Tylenol.

Is my withdrawal real? I don't know. But I know I have never lifted my hand in anger to anyone- in my life. Last night I dragged my wife down the stairs and out of the house for no reason that seems important now. Physically I have noticed my heart beating very fast and I am sweating so much it is not even funny. My face is also very red. I also feel like my mind is in a fog. My wife scared of me right now. I am scared of me right now. Maybe it is my mind trying to find a reason to justify going back to smoking? I am a concert pianist because I was able to fight all odds to do so, to do everything everyone said I could not. I have character traits that have brought me a great distance in life- but they are a double edged sword. Right now all of my positive traits are working hard against me. I am not smoking now. But I don't know about in a little while.

By anon72886 — On Mar 24, 2010

Im 37 years old been smoking for 20 years I finally quit 11 days ago no one can believe it, that's how much I smoked.

I woke up monday morning of the day I quit and lite up for some unknown reason both hands and feet got cold scared me so dialed 911. The time they got there was fine still went to the hospital and all tests were fine.While I was in triage they brought a guy in who couldn't breath you should have heard that. Right then I was done.

This has been a great site. Lots of withdraw symptoms the first week was OK but now getting a little nutty. Sleep at night,and short fused. But hey been poisoning my body for they last 20 years. It will be OK good luck to all

By anon72423 — On Mar 23, 2010

This is my fourth or fifth time trying in the last year. I am into my fourth week now and have found the withdrawal a nightmare.

I was not feeling well before I quit. I had stomach pains and back pains which I attributed to smoking but since I've quit everything is a million times worse. I have a constant feeling of stress and anxiety as well as a lot of pain in my lower back and under my ribs and headaches too.

I have no desire for a cigarette at all but I've had this kind of thing before and then just cracked and had one for no reason.

I'm more determined this time but really wish I would get some relief from this awful tension and pain. Hope I can post next month to say it's all better!

By anon72378 — On Mar 22, 2010

I smoked for 16 years. I'm 29. I have been a non-smoker for one month and going strong. I feel like I have a normal life now that I am free from that addiction.

Realizing the power of my ability to make a choice, making the right choice, and cheering myself on was the key for me to quit.

Also, I couldn't have done it without reading other quit stories and educating myself about what to expect from cravings, how long they are meant to last, and how to cope with nicotine withdrawal.

This was my first month as a non-smoker in a nutshell:

Week one: I found it really weird that my cravings didn't start until the fifth day. My mood was fine and I felt good overall. I kept busy and distracted.

Week two: I'm really proud to have made it through the first hurdle. Lots of short, intense cravings this week. Hungry, feeling like I needed something. Very sleepy. Extremely restless.

I kept focused and by the end of the week I was feeling much better and motivated.

Week three: Cravings were more predictable and easier to deal with this week. I was sleeping better than ever but waking up feeling like I'd been smoking all night. Sore chest, coughs and flu like symptoms.

Motivation was a bit low because I was getting impatient for unrealistic results. I read about the symptoms I am having this week and I am actually looking forward to coughing everything up and having clear lungs.

Week four: One month wow! I was kinder to myself this week and went for a massage which released a lot of quit-tension and toxins. Drank a lot of water. Only big triggers are causing the cravings now.

My chest still feels tight but I'm going to try yoga and see if that helps. I remember that I used to feel terrible when I smoked so this is a beautiful change. Even if it's slow progress, at least I don't smoke anymore.

I realize I am expecting too much too soon and give myself a break. My skin has a healthier glow and I am much happier and calmer. Walking has helped me to breathe easier and improve my circulation.

Second month: My plan is to educate myself on what to expect during the second month. Walk more often and join a yoga class.

I wish everyone the very best in being a non-smoker.

By anon72086 — On Mar 21, 2010

This is day number two. I started smoking when I was 19 and I'm only 21 now, but going from a pack a day to nothing is really taking a toll.

Last night before bed I had a horrible nic fit, and had a horrible anxiety attack to the point where my friend had to calm me down. It took 45 minutes for her to get me to relax enough to sleep. She's quitting too, but she's been a smoker for three years more than I have and she seems to be suffering from less anxiety. I can't wait for these withdrawal symptoms to disappear.

By anon71940 — On Mar 20, 2010

I found this site a month or so ago and it has been most helpful in my efforts, yes efforts, to quit, but I feel so very sorry for all of you who have such nasty withdrawal symptoms.

How things have changed for us smokers! Forty years ago we could walk down the mall and be given free Marlboros by the marketing chicks. Now, my workplace here in Australia is soon to ban smoking within 25 metres of the premises. It is also illegal in this country to stop on the side of the road in the country and smoke within 1.2 metres of vegetation.

But, all of these laws are a blessing in disguise for those of us who are trying or have newly quit. Soon it will be only the diehard smokers who will have to worry about them, not us!

My smoking life started about 40 years ago. I have 'played' with giving up numerous times using patches, but failed each time. It was only a couple of months ago my brother told me about Allen Carr's book, so with nothing to lose but the price of two packs of cigs, I bought and read it. It didn't blow me away, but it was food for thought and I often found myself mulling it over in my mind.

Then one day I decided to give up cold turkey. I lasted 16 days before an upsetting situation at work sent me back to the cigs. I smoked two packs then gave up again for a few days. Smoked another pack, then gave up again. Did this a few times.

Silly of me after getting that far? Definitely yes, but I learned three things. 1) Each time I took it up was one more time I had to quit and go through withdrawal. 2) Each time I quit I knew exactly what confronted me and I was able to deal with it much easier the next time, and 3) That beating myself up over failing was not a positive way to start my next quit attempt, so I didn't, I put it down to experience.

In the last six or so weeks I have gone from a 40 year, 50 a day steam train who constantly thought about when my next smoke would be, to someone who is calm and doesn't even yearn for a cigarette. I am so proud of myself when I go to the shopping center and walk straight past the 'cancer counter' that I had shares in!

I have been extremely lucky not to have severe withdrawal symptoms. I've had tiredness, a bit of teeth clenching, fist clenching and a whole year's worth of menopausal hot flushes crammed into one hour (that was by far the worst). I drink at least 500ml orange juice a day and take a multivitamin, and have not increased my food intake, but admit to feeling very lazy (hopefully this will improve in time).

So, if I can do this, anyone can. I know, I have read numerous stories on the net from other ex smokers too saying the same and thought yeah, yeah, you mustn't have smoked as much as me to give up that easy. But hey, I have done it and feel I owe my success in part to Allen Carr's book for putting the addiction and effects of nicotine (be it in cigarettes or patches) into perspective, and to the people on this website in particular for preparing me for the worst.

I hope my story can inspire just one person to try and succeed in quitting. It's good for our health. It's good for our pocket. My money used to run out before the end of the week, now I find the week runs out before my money does. Good luck everyone! Gal from Oz.

By anon71624 — On Mar 19, 2010

This is day 12 and it is getting better. It was a very stressing week at work and in my private life. Since I could handle these days without smoking, it feels like I have kicked the addiction. Well sometimes Mr. Dark Prince Nicotine visits me, trying to lure me into smoking but I spit in his face and run away.

I feel free. I am not a slave anymore. All I need to do is pay the price. I consider all these withdrawal symptoms as the price I need to pay for my freedom, and it helps.

Well, I am putting on weight but I will ignore it for a while. Good luck for everyone and thank you for sharing your experiences. They helped me a lot and made me feel normal. Best wishes!

By anon71136 — On Mar 17, 2010

I started at the age of nineteen smoking cigarettes. I did not inhale, but smoked them like cigars. At the age of 21, i started to inhale. Now I am 31.

I have had a habit to smoke half a pack a day for a decade. Last year i began chewing tobacco. They buzz was so much better than smoking. I now alternate between chew and cigarettes. My dentist says that I need to quit. Today is my first day of quitting. At 10 a.m. i felt an intense craving.

I decided to get out for lunch and then coffee at starbucks. After lunch I felt a super nic fit. I felt high. I felt momentary freeze framing in my vision. I felt out of my body. My lips, gums, and teeth became so aware to me. I could not concentrate.

I felt that going to starbucks for a read would be worthless. I decided to drive home. I didn't feel safe on the road. I passed by a gas station and considered going in for a can of chew. I didn't. How can a nic fit make someone lose control of their mind? My mind is playing tricks on me. It trying in every conceivable permutation and combination to get my body to some nicotine.

My fit now seems like it is over. The fit lasted 35 minutes.

By anon70913 — On Mar 16, 2010

I'm 24 years old and I'm on my fourth week of not smoking! My second day of quitting i ended up having symptoms of shortness of breath, chest pains, and feeling really weak! It scared me because i thought something serious was wrong.

I have been in and out of ER for the past few weeks trying to see what's going on. The doctors kept telling me all my blood work and x-rays were fine. I go to my regular physician. I go to the physician and they tell me i have smokers withdrawal. I was shocked because i didn't know how many side effects quitting smoking could have on you!

By anon70854 — On Mar 16, 2010

Day 48 today. Wow, this is really hard. I have smoked almost steady for 30 years.

I'm really glad I found this site to come and read everyone's comment because it has helped me. Seems like not as many are commenting anymore though.

I've had a mild headache since the first day I have quit and just starting to be able to sleep at night. I still wake up with my pulse going but it doesn't seem to be every night anymore.

I still chew one and a half pieces of the nicorette gum to get me through and it has calmed my nerves.

I am in the middle are all kinds of heart tests and hopefully they all come back fine. I changed my high blood pressure pill about a week after I quit smoking and now think that was a stupid thing to do.

I count the days and that helps me stick with it and I think if I had a smoke right now I would be so dizzy it would make me sick.

But so far, I have felt everything that has been mentioned on here and am glad I can come here and read with others are feeling.

One day at a time and hopefully all these feelings end and I start feeling good and then I will be so glad that I finally quit!

By anon70561 — On Mar 15, 2010

It is day 16 since i have quit cold turkey after smoking 15 cigarettes for the last 19 years! These past 16 days seem to be the longest days of my life and have been praying that the days go off fast so that the withdrawal effects can pass asap!

i have felt most of the symptoms like lightheadedness, high cravings which i try to suppress by having something to eat or drink, body ache, short temper, irritability and the worst is insomnia. I wake up almost every night and can't get back to sleep and as a result, am tired and can't concentrate at work!

but i guess all will be well once these symptoms are over and can declare my self a non-smoker and feel the freedom, as this was one thing which made me want to quit badly, as i felt that i was totally enslaved!

By anon70218 — On Mar 12, 2010

hello. this is my twelfth day after quitting smoking. this is my second time quitting. i smoked from the age of thirteen until nineteen. then i quit for two years and then smoked for another year and now i quit again - for good.

things have been much harder for me this time around. when i quit the first time the only symptom i remember feeling was intense cravings. this time, i feel awful. i have bad gas, bloated, headache, extreme fatigue, etc.

The worst symptom of all though is hear fluttering/palpitations. It only started when I quit smoking so I know that it comes from that, but it's really scaring me. I know other people have experienced this so can someone please, please, please tell me when this will stop. It happens every hour or so throughout the day or when I take a very deep breath, my heart will flutter inside my chest and feels like an extra beat or a missing beat - very weird feeling. It is making me feel like I shouldn't over exert myself. Please help.

By anon70082 — On Mar 11, 2010

Today is Day five for me. It's really great to read the posts on this site. I felt like something was really going wrong with how crappy I felt. Looks like it's all part of the physical withdrawals. The worst part for me (the first three days) was the headaches! Oh-- and the fatigue. I stayed in bed most of the day the second and third days!

Now my symptoms include a minor headache and tightness of my chest/ shortness of breath. I smoked for 13 years. I'm only 26. I think this is the best decision I have made. Cold turkey was the way to go for me.

This is the longest I've gone without smoking since I started 13 years ago. Good luck everyone. You are all an inspiration! Sam.

By sameerps — On Mar 10, 2010

day 1. First time. O.k. till now, no pangs. used to smoke 15 a day.

By anon69449 — On Mar 08, 2010

so glad i found this post. i really thought i was going insane. i quit cold turkey two weeks ago, but tried to quit for over a month, then finally stopped.

I've smoked two packs a day for over 20 years, I'm in good shape, i run every morning then get home and smoke. horrible. i found that keeping a journal of the physical and mental changes i am going through really helps. I can go back and flip through it to see what might have triggered a craving. i can honestly say i don't crave a cig at all, but i still get light headed, dizzy, with morning nosebleeds and a horrible taste in my mouth.

I refuse to throw in the towel. i kept a journal and over a month prior to cold turkey, i smoked a cig or two at my worst moments. While reading the journal i realized that smoking the cig actually made the dizziness worse.

I'm so glad to see everyone's posts; it makes me feel normal. I'm going to beat this. but trust me withdrawals are real and not all mental. Nosebleeds and headaches? I've never had one in my life prior to quitting, but i know it's my body healing and I'm going to hang in.

By anon68884 — On Mar 04, 2010

I gave up smoking eight days ago, and it has been the most horrifying eight days of my life. I'm 20 years old and don't drink or do any drugs and this is what I imagine to be on every drug under the sun does to people.

I can't stop passing wind, everything i eat is coming out with an hour, maximum two, i got home today at 4 p.m. and fell asleep until 11 p.m. Now i cannot sleep and it's 3 a.m.!

The only way i get through this is to think that this torture will pass tomorrow (think that every day) and that i don't want to have to put myself through this again! smoking sucks.

i guess I'm the unlucky one whose body really doesn't want to give up smoking so it is doing everything it can to make me start again! arghhh, i don't even want to go to college tomorrow through fear of throwing up or having to come home again because the patch can make me feel so ill. Rant over! smoking sucks!

By anon68704 — On Mar 03, 2010

I'm 44 years old, and have been free for six weeks and five days. I'm so happy to not be smoking. This has been hard. Today was a tough day. But it's better than the alternative.

Here's a thing that smokers don't think about - you stink! Your clothes stink, your breath stinks, your car stinks - its clings to you. Your hair, face, skin, and teeth are old, worn, and yellow.

Not me. Not us. We don't smoke. It is disgusting. It is killing us. We don't want to die.

So I will fight through this tough day. I just saw a great post.

"Smoking has become a behavioral pattern that deals with changes in breathing and muscle tension that are at the core of anger, boredom, fatigue, hunger,... life"

So, it's just a behavioral pattern dealing with a major change in muscle tension -- and I know this too shall pass.

I'm so happy to not be smoking. Even with the headaches, sweats, crying fits, et al. I don't want to smoke. Also chills. Has anyone else experienced the chills? When everyone else in the house is warm, I have goose bumps all over. Can't get warm. Oy vey.

However - I love how I can breathe now. I am a student, and before, when I was late to class I had to pause after coming up the hill before I could go up the stairs to class. Now I run all the way to class! (because I'm still always running late!) But at least I can run!

I look forward to coming back soon and seeing how much better I'm doing. Cheers to us! We don't smoke!

By anon68660 — On Mar 03, 2010

Today is day 15 of being smoke-free! I have smoked a pack a day for 10 years and have always been terrified of trying to quit. I enjoy smoking but have probably wanted to be a non-smoker for about five years now. I have never tried to quit because I didn't think I was ready and I didn't want to fail. This is the hardest thing I have ever had to do.

My husband and I set a quit date together but he was not very motivated and has left me on this journey alone! I decided to just focus on not smoking the first three days. I didn't have any physical symptoms these three days but I was constantly having strong urges. I kept reminding myself that urges only last a few minutes each.

After I had three days under my belt, I focused on making it a week. Day five was a rush of physical symptoms, including nausea and chills. But, I noticed a big decrease in the frequency (not intensity though) of my cravings. On day nine, I woke up in the middle of the night with a nosebleed, which has never happened to me before and the last five days or so I have had a lot of trouble falling and staying asleep. Benadryl has really helped though!

Now I am focusing on making it one month.

Each day gets easier. There are no more physical symptoms and the urges don't come as often and don't last as long. I have been careful not to put myself in situations where it will be very hard for me not to smoke (like a bar).

I'm a fairly moody person anyway so I am not sure how nicotine withdrawal is affecting my emotional state but I know it is. I have noticed at times I just cannot control my frustration even when I know I'm overreacting.

I just keep reminding myself why I am doing this. I want to be healthy and be happy with myself. I want to be able to breathe easier. I want to get pregnant fairly soon and don't want to model destructive behavior for my future children. And I don't want the people that I love to worry about me or have to stand by while I die a painful death.

My mom has asked for me to quit for Mother's Day for years now. So this year she will get what she wants- I will be almost three months smoke-free by then and am looking forward to surprising her!

I will say though: if I knew the world was ending soon, the first thing I would do is smoke a cigarette!

Thanks to everyone for posting their stories on here- it's helpful. Keep up the good work! ~Brianna

By anon68658 — On Mar 03, 2010

It has been a week since I quick smoking. I am taking Chantix; It really helps with the cravings, but not with the physical withdrawals. Thank god that I found this site. I thought I was really really sick. I missed two days of work because I was so tired all I wanted to do was sleep. Also, the on and off headaches, body aches etc.

Now I know what's wrong with me and I can find a way to deal with this part of nicotine withdrawals. I had a meltdown today. My so-called significant other called me on the phone to tell me he wanted to move out. It hit me like a ton of bricks, since he helps pay half of the bills.

I only work four days a week, I am 63 years old and had a total knee replacement eight months ago.

Anyway, I totally overreacted (not like me when I am smoking) and I was crying. My heart felt like it was going to jump out of my chest. I was going to jump in my car and head to the store to buy cigarettes.

I didn't; I really want to stay smoke free. My rational mind tells me that I will deal with my issue smoking or not and I would rather not.

I have been clean and sober for 23 years, and I dealt with physical abuse. Now at 63, I don't and won't smoke.

I will continue to read your posts. They really are a big help. I thought I didn't have a support system. Well that was before I found this site. Thank you everyone. Bye.

By anon68087 — On Feb 28, 2010

I started smoking when I was around 14 years old and I'm 49 now. Two years ago my father was treated for throat cancer. Then after the throat cancer treatment he ended up with a pulmonary embolism in his lung, and I watched him take his last breath and die at age 71. I proceeded to walk out of the hospital that day and the first thing I did was light a cig. While I saw my dad die, I couldn't help but see myself lying there.

I was smoking between a pack and two packs a day, weed too. I also noticed that it was becoming more and more difficult for me to walk any distance as I was getting tightness in my legs and numbness in my feet.

I knew deep down I was losing circulation in my legs. Anyway, I knew it was only a matter of time that if I kept this up, I'd have a hard time walking at all, and likely I'd be laying in that same hospital bed 20 years from now or less.

So, I spent the last month thinking about quitting every day, getting myself psyched up and mentally prepared. Tomorrow marks two weeks of no cigarettes, no patches, no nothing. I have experienced a lot of tingling, especially in the hands, what feels like heart palpitations, and what feels like some minor cramping under my rib cage both left and right.

I also have had a minor sore throat, and have been coughing up some phlegm with grayish/blackish particles in it so I know the gunk has already starting coming up.

While I still have urges to smoke, it is becoming less and less of an urge.

I did feel as though I was depriving myself of something I really enjoyed doing, I also have noticed the fatigue and tightness in my legs and hips getting better.

I can definitely feel the leg circulation improving and this is keeping me motivated.

My advice to calm the urges: take a shower, take a nap, go workout, read a book, or otherwise keep your mind occupied.

Watching your father die from smoking, losing the circulation in your legs, both are great motivators. You can do it; your mind is more powerful than you know.

By anon67980 — On Feb 28, 2010

OK been smoking for 37 years, and recently got pneumonia. I woke up and couldn't breath. After 2 days in the hospital, I was released and went right back to smoking, and the next night I woke up again and couldn't breathe. Its now 11 days, and the wanting hasn't gone away, only the physical discomfort. Id love a big, but breathing is better

By anon67920 — On Feb 27, 2010

Have been 100% nicotine free for one week as of right now! Cut way back a month ago (dip). I did this right after a minor head injury (almost knocked out on my feet). Wondering if post concussion issues magnify the anxiety of nicotine withdrawal. Really have almost had some meltdowns as far as fearing passing out, etc. Keep the faith and pray for me!

By anon67841 — On Feb 27, 2010

my first post was #287 and now it's been one month and three days of no smoking (and no cheating) after quitting cold turkey. I still have absolutely no desire at all to return to the habit.

I feel wonderful and horrible both at the same time! About four days ago i started to feel almost normal with symptoms becoming less frequent and less severe. But, they are by no means gone!

I got the Quitzits too, a major couple of volcano zits on my neck, nose and temple. I'm 38, god! Also, starting to feel more easily fatigued but my concentration is improving. I'm exercising every other day and that is helping.

Most of the day my breathing feels much better but I've also been feeling a little more depression/anxiety.

So for now, I'm pleased to have little incentives that counter the bad parts. I know I'm healing and that will take time.

On a side note, a few days ago, an idiot coworker was blowing his cigarette smoke in my face trying to be funny/tempt me and my lungs literally hurt for the next two hours. like a stabbing feeling. that sucked. I never realized the damage i was doing to people with my secondhand smoke.

well anyway, i feel a definite improvement between two weeks and one month.

I'm sure the next month will be full of new challenges but i look forward to looking back at this post to compare my feelings. I never thought quitting would occupy so much of my time/life/energy but I'm giving it 100 percent! My family, life and career are worth it.

I'm not one for support groups, but reading everyone's posts when i feel like my body has it out for me really helps calm me down and gives me an added boost of strength and confidence.

By anon67773 — On Feb 26, 2010

I am 65 and have been smoking since I was 16. After a bout of very bad bronchitis, coupled with the feeling of being an outcast in today's society, I finally felt like I wanted to quit. Before, I always felt like I should quit. I guess my secret to being able to quit was doing it for me, not anyone else.

I started out by reading everything I could get my hands on about how to quit. I looked into Chantix but the price was ridiculous. I checked out the gum and patches but also read how they could be addicting. I then decided I would just have to do it in my own way.

Keep in mind that I was smoking on average 30 cigarettes a day or more for 49 years! I decided to change my smoking habits such as not allowing myself a cigarette after I finished eating (this was my favorite). Then I started setting the timer for an hour and would have to wait that incredibly long time between smokes.

I finally got down to five a day just by changing out the habits I had gotten into. I often caught myself grabbing a cigarette without even thinking about it. When I got down to five, I knew I had it licked.

The next day I went down to two. It took me a week to get past the two to zero. It has been 57 days since the last cigarette and I feel empowered! No more do I have to worry if I have enough cigarettes before leaving the house, how long the flight will be before I can have a smoke, etc.

Cigarettes were ruling my life, but no more! I have been blessed that I haven't had a lot of the symptoms that many of the posters have had. I still occasionally will be doing something and think "well now I can have a cigarette, since I finished that!" and then realize Hey, wait a minute, I don't smoke anymore! What a great feeling. My sense of smell is greatly increased, although sometimes that's not such a good thing! I can't say food tastes different, but I eat raw carrots like they're going out of style! I still occasionally get short of breath, but practice breathing exercises and it passes.

This is truly a blessing to me so finally say I am a non-smoker. I know I'll never smoke again! I never thought I'd ever be able to say that. For all of you who are going through the roughest stages, hang in there - it is so worth it! God bless!

By anon67420 — On Feb 24, 2010

This site has been very informative, and i am so happy to hear everyone is fighting the good fight, but i must say i am discouraged.

I don't think there is one post that mentions feeling "absolutely wonderful" -- physically that is.

I understand emotionally we all will miss our "death causing friend" but no one out there can put hope to the fact that after, say, a year, the physical discomfort goes away? This is scary for me. I am 10 days without smoking. i smoked american spirits for 10 years 1/2 to a pack a day.

I am 26 years old. I quit cold turkey and have had the "smokers flu" since day one. I no longer have any use for my nose it's so stuffed up. I don't mind, because i have told myself it's my body healing, but i am desperately searching the internet for some true inspiration that this pain will pass.

i know the benefits of quitting are so much more important then the horrors smoking can cause, and i know i can do this. i just need to hear it's going to be worth it. Forget nicotine!

By anon67259 — On Feb 23, 2010

I just completed day 18 of not smoking, and today had some hard areas. I had to report for jury duty. Fortunately, I didn't get picked for a trial, or else I think I really would have caved.

The physical withdrawal has been difficult, but, it gets easier. I had long ago stopped smoking during the workday, but would often go out for coffee after work and smoke then.

Getting out of work is hard, and some days, I really have to focus on just making it to my car.

Since I quit, I haven't been as productive as before. Well, actually, I finished a few manual projects and did my taxes early this year, but I've been less productive in my daily activities. I'm assuming this will pass as I continue to recover and build up more stamina.

Oh, and the dreams where I cave and realize, two or three cigs later that I caved. Yeah, those aren't fun. I'm hoping they'll pass as well.

One thing that's helped has been walking 30 minutes a day. I've found that when I start getting stressed, if I go for a walk, I tend to walk off the anxiety and the craving. Fortunately, I have a treadmill for those days when it rains and such.

Oh, and deep breathing. Sometimes I'll just breathe the same way as if I were taking a drag, and the extra oxygen helps combat the cravings. Not sure if this will help anyone.

On a final note, I keep reminding myself that I've gone 18 days without smoking. If I have any cravings tomorrow, I'll try to make it at least one more day. This mindset makes each day just a little bit easier to not smoke. It makes me realize that maybe I don't need cigarettes to cope with stress and such.

Good luck to everyone!

By anon67029 — On Feb 22, 2010

Day three, reading all these posts and listening to "The End" by the doors. I hope I can make it. Lordy give us strength!

By anon66752 — On Feb 21, 2010

Wow, I quit 11 days ago (longest non-smoking period in 10 years). I've been going through terrible symptoms and I thought it was just me. First I had cold symptoms and cravings. Then the cold symptoms went away but I still have aches all over my body, especially my neck and inner ear. I don't have any cravings at all but I almost feel like smoking to make these withdrawal symptoms go away now..

Always, it seems like whenever I try to quit it's the worst time to quit. Suddenly I have a big workload put on me and I just can't concentrate at all. Even worse is that they started construction across the street and the noise, oh god the noise. Why now? Why?

My co-worker who never smoked was saying that this is what I get for smoking and I'm not a violent person but I just wanted to throw my stapler at her. Irritability is another thing I have to deal with.

But seriously, some of you are saying these symptoms last months. Are you serious? If so, then I'm going to have to put off quitting because I'm not going to last --no way.

By anon66721 — On Feb 21, 2010

I am on day 11 of going cold turkey. I smoked for 25 years and up until I quit I was smoking almost two packs a day.

We recently bought a German Shepherd and I was getting too winded to even walk him properly. That really upset me and then a friend of the family who has been a heavy smoker for over 40 years became ill. He actually lost a part of his lung and all smokers know these horror stories but his was different for me.

He started smoking again as soon as he could. I never thought he was "silly/stupid/dumb/ignorant." Instead, I felt so very sorry for him and I pitied him and it scared me because I believe if I do not stop smoking, eventually I too, will have something horrible happen.

What if I can't stop? What if I become one of those people who still smoke while on oxygen tanks? How sad is that? That is when the idea of smoking a cigarette stopped looking good to me. That is the moment I stopped thinking of my beloved ciggies as a "friend/companion." These sticks are literally killing me and I was allowing it.

The withdrawals I've had have been so-so. Mostly flatulence, cramps and sore throat but I keep thinking it's my body getting rid of the toxins so I'm down with it. It's all good. It makes me happy!

Good luck to everyone else and just stay strong!

By ninoruiz — On Feb 20, 2010

I'm three months and seven days without smoking. The first and second months were very horrible to me, because I experienced all the withdrawal symptoms. After study, I realized that all I experienced is a withdrawal symptoms. Now I feel better, but still have occasional cold turkey.

To my fellow quitting smokers, please don't give up!

By anon66327 — On Feb 19, 2010

I'm only my third day quitting on the patches. I've been going really solid until this afternoon.

for some reason after a massive day at work i really felt like a cold beer and a smoke. so yeah I've busted on my third day! not happy and I'm not exactly sure how to proceed from here.

for me i like the idea of having cigarettes nearby even just for security. I've had three pigs and two beers this arvo. i feel like cutting them up and throwing them out though i'll feel like i just wasted money in buying a pack.

not sure what to do from here. get back on the patches? cold turkey? (not likely, in my opinion) or i don't know.

i don't want to take this crap up again. i want to get rid of it. it's the little things in life that can be so triggering, though. It's amazing. Yesterday i was quite depressed but today wasn't so bad and then i busted this afternoon. help. what do i do to quit and stay quit? cheers

By anon66262 — On Feb 18, 2010

I quit smoking in January. This was an accomplishment for me. I've been a smoker for more than 20 years. I am using chantix, and after two days of using these pills I had no interest in smoking anymore because the cigarette smoke was thick and really nasty in my mouth and I did not want to smoke.

The only thing that bothers me if other smokers around me smoke. I would have to leave and be as far away from them because I would get literally sick of the smell but this helped me a lot.

I don't crave smoking at all and that is where I am at right now. maybe this can help the next person. Good luck quitting.

By anon66236 — On Feb 18, 2010

Today marks the tenth day of having quit cold turkey, and can I tell you, this stinks. The physical cravings have more or less passed, and I just got over a couple of days of really bad headaches, but I'm still worried I'm going to start again.

Mostly it's just that smoking is so ingrained into everything I do: I wake up, smoke, go to class, smoke, eat, smoke, etc. and so forth. So now I have all these awkward gaps in my day where I don't know what to do with myself. Gum has been working so far, but I don't know how long that will last.

I really just miss smoking for the sake of smoking, not because my body demands it of me. It's so nice to sit and smoke and have a conversation with my friends (all of whom smoke, making this even harder). I'm not doing this of my own accord either, though -- I'm leaving for the Peace Corps in July, and it's part of my medical requirements that I stop. So I guess that's good (because I need to quit anyway) and bad (because I didn't make the choice to quit, the Peace Corps made it for me).

Good luck to everyone else here on this forum. It's really nice to know that I'm not alone in this. Stay strong!

By anon65876 — On Feb 16, 2010

I read Alan Carr's book, "the easy way to stop smoking" and it worked for me. Haven't had a smoke in 45 days after 30 years of a pack a day.

It amazes me. However, I'm dreaming more than ever, not about smoking -- just dreaming and I don't like it. I don't feel rested.

Also I realize in the attempt to fill that "void" of smoking, I'm putting sweets in my mouth! Not good. So plan a healthy replacement before you quit.

By anon65613 — On Feb 15, 2010

My earlier postings are #236 and #257. Given up chewing tobacco cold turkey from 30-35 times a days to nil of uninterrupted habit of 20 years. This is 91 st day of my quit.

The depression and tiredness still prevail. Sleep disorders are improving gradually. Still the mind seems to be heavier with severe short- temperedness. I realized how difficult the habit really is to break. Still don't know when I'll start living a normal life.

By anon64349 — On Feb 06, 2010

This is day ten of not smoking and unlike most people I have no withdrawal symptoms at all. I smoked for forty years a pack to a pack and a half and I can not believe I am not losing my mind! Has anyone else had this happen?

I quit because I have asthma and came down with what my physician thought was pneumonia so I didn't smoke for a day, then two and now it's going on eleven. Can I expect to be in agony at a later date?

By anon64347 — On Feb 06, 2010

I get seasonal depression in the time. I find comfort in smoking whenever that happens. I find quitting very very hard, on numerous attempts. I smoke too much for a 22 year old who wakes up and has a smoke to start the day and smokes to go to sleep. I can't help falling back to the same habit when depression hits.

Should i seek antidepressants or something, but then again i am scared i may become dependent on those too.

Don't know it i have the willpower anymore. Help.

By anon64251 — On Feb 06, 2010

wow, what great reassurances! it's very calming to read through all the posts and identify with a part on each and every one. i smoked a pack and a half a day for 15 years. i haven't smoked in over two weeks and quit the patch cold turkey four days ago. Also, i drank about 10 large coffees a day and down to just 1 now.

i had a horrible night last night and tonight isn't much better. Heavy sweats, insomnia, gas, indigestion, nervousness, ugg. here comes the dry mouth. i've been pounding water and juice as much as possible to try to flush my system.

Almost had a major freak out-holding the phone about to dial 911 but i realize it's just the anxiety back for another taunt at me.

at least i haven't had the headaches (yet) really hope i can skip that one. Whatever it takes, there is no way i'm going back to smoking. Thanks to everyone who has posted for giving the added strength of mind!

By anon64025 — On Feb 04, 2010

I feel all your pain. I smoked full-time (1+ pack a day) for 12 years. I have tried gum, patch, chantix, and all the drugs (is nicotine replacement therapy) partially solve one problem, but they cause another.

You want to know what really works to help you quit smoking? Read the book called "The Easy Way to Quit Smoking" by Allen Carr. It sounds like crap, and believe me, all my unsupportive friends laughed at me when they heard the title.

It is by far the best method, and only thing I've found to ever work. It explains how and why the biggest problem with smoking isn't the cigarettes, but the problem is in our heads, and the way we think, and think that we "need" to smoke.

I'm on day four of being off cigarettes (cold turkey) and I don't have any desire to smoke. Sure I feel slight urges at trigger moments like after eating, but besides that I don't crave it.

The book actually says that cutting down is worse than smoking as much as you want.

For those who are really motivated, it is a must-read and it works! Good luck all!

By anon63705 — On Feb 03, 2010

Good site and helpful to read everyone's comments. I have again stopped cold turkey 11 days ago.

I stopped for 4.5 years when I was 32 and then stupidly smoked one cigarette (which made me feel terribly ill) and off it started again.

I read Allen Carr's book this time which helped enormously but I also think it was that I had reached a point of being tired of being a slave to tobacco and having it dominate my life.

I was thoroughly fed up with myself and the way I was living. The withdrawal symptoms do exist but only up to a certain point or at least for me.

I accept the oral type craving I get which does mean that I actually want to eat!

I also am drinking a bit more red wine but that will be lessened also. It helps that my partner is a non-smoker and hates smoking and that most people I know are non-smokers.

I have no intention of smoking again. It is still day by day currently but each day is a milestone and I expect the third week to be better still.

I am so glad I have done this even with the nasal drip, sneezing and fatigue. That is really the ultimate point - I am glad I have done this.

I am truly glad that I have stopped smoking. All the best to all of you. We can all do this!!

By anon63666 — On Feb 02, 2010

Day 10 of quitting cigarettes and I can say I'm feeling better but I feel I've got a ways to go. Mainly had terrible fatigue, muscle aches, and anxiety but have noticed a my breathing easier. Tingling in my specifically my left foot and finger pain? has come and gone, hope this helps all. Good luck

By anon63476 — On Feb 01, 2010

Today is day 92 since I quit cold turkey. I was a two pack a day smoker for 20 years. I was diagnosed with angina and had to have angioplasty performed.

When I was in the operating room for the procedure, while looking at my heart on the video screen, my decision to never have another cigarette was made.

My family has a history of heart disease and at 42 years old, I finally realized for myself that nicotine wasn't helping my heart health. As well as other possible health issues that could arise.

The first two months of withdrawals included

1. Anxiety - I thought my heart was going to blow up, it would feel like it was beating too fast. Sometimes I would get the feeling as if I needed to do something when actually there was nothing; I didn't feel like socializing or be in any places that were too busy (usually, I like to be with friends family, people). I would work myself up so much, my chest would feel tight and back muscles would feel sore.

2. Depression - I would get really sleepy and want to take a nap. If I didn't take a nap, my mind would start getting confused or I would

start to forget things. Sometimes I would get a

sad feeling, like I was missing someone. A couple

of times I even started breaking down (and I'm not really an emotional type of person).

3. Weird sleep patterns - besides getting sleepy, there were times where I couldn't sleep. I kept thinking something bad was going to happen.

Maybe this could be part of the anxiety (#1).

4. Loss of appetite - I would weigh myself and

noticed I was losing weight. I remember forcing

myself to eat. I started watching the food and

travel channels to get myself hungry. Actually,

I still do this. I also started carrying snacks

around with me to munch on; this seemed to help

replace the urge to smoke.

In the first couple of months when I felt I was going to lose it, I read through a couple scriptures and felt a calm come over me for awhile. I haven't done this type of reading in 25 years.

So, I'm revisiting this spirituality. And it seems to help.

The third month, the withdrawal symptoms started to slow down. I still feel some of the withdrawals but I think the body/mind

gets used to dealing with them. I've just tried to replace the time I would smoke with other things, like reading, praying, exercise, munching on snacks, a glass of wine, relaxation breathing, spending more time with friends and family.

I'm so grateful for this website. It really helped me to see that some withdrawal symptoms are very similar in others that have quit. And that I'm not the only one who has the determination to be smoke free.

I hope and pray that everyone finds the strength to keep away from smoking.

By stretch1one — On Feb 01, 2010

I have a post in here somewhere where i tried to quit cold turkey and that did not go so well. I had all the goodies: cold sweats and passing out on day three was the topper.

Anyway, after the visit to the hospital everything was OK on all the tests so i didn't die so i went to my doctor who actually said i should talk to another doctor in the office who was a former smoker. He should talk to all of us on here, then when we have all the withdrawal symptoms we won't feel alone.

He told me of the horrible things he felt which, by the way, are all the things everyone else is having on this site.

Anyway I'm drifting off the subject. Brief recap: I'm 37 been smoking since the age of 14 -- 23 years worth of smoking ending up at two packs a day, so since i failed at cold turkey. the doctor said let's try the patch and if that doesn't work we would try champix.

Well I'm on week nine of the patch system on level three which is 7 mg, the lowest level. I'm off totally in four days i have had at one point all the problems everyone else has had.

The worst is still having the tingling feeling i get throughout the day. On the first patch, 21 mg, it went away at three to four weeks then i got it back at level two -- 14 mg for about a week then again i have them again on this new level.

But, i have not had one cigarette in this whole time, mainly because of the fear of the withdrawal again. i never want to go through this again. so far so good.

By anon63049 — On Jan 30, 2010

I am on my 14th day of cold turkey. Thanks so much to everyone who wrote on this site. It helped me loads.

I had tried at least 200 times to stop. My job was to help people quit smoking but even that wasn't enough to make me stop! I found my reason to quit my 20 a day for 24 years habit after going down with a chest infection head over a bowl of steamed water. I could hardly breathe! my nine year old son's panicked face gave me the biggest reality check ever.

I haven't slept, I've had night sweats, moodiness, have been completely spaced out and can't stop eating, but hey! I can't stay this way forever. I kind of realized that this torture has to be better than the cancer ward or worse, telling my kids I'm dying.

Thanks again, fellow tortured souls.

By anon62944 — On Jan 29, 2010

For my wife and I (both 20-plus years of smoking) a gradual draw down is what worked for us. We had tried cold turkey a few times and the patches, but we always gave in to the cravings at some point and then we were right back to smoking again.

We even continued to smoke while my wife was pregnant with both of our children. We tried to quit during those nine months, but the addiction was just too strong. We were fortunate in that both of our children were healthy and have remained healthy even though they lived with two smokers.

We started to talk about how to go about doing this. We started to talk about how we both had started smoking to begin with. (I imagine this story is similar to most smokers.) We both had started by sneaking cigarettes from our parents while in middle school.

When I went to high school, I would smoke a few while out with my friends and when ever my parents weren't home. She basically did the same. (we didn't even know each other at time.) Over time, the frequency of times I smoked gradually increased.

For both of us, smoking was easy to hide because both of parents smoked and most of our friends parents smoked as well, so we did not have to worry about our clothes smelling or anything else when we would come home. Then, I still remember the first morning when I woke up and the only I could think of was having a cigarette. I knew I was hooked.

By time we started dating, we were both already addicted and no longer had to sneak around our parents, but still the actual number of cigarettes we smoked a day was pretty small, until we went to college, when we both would smoke over a pack a day.

I tell you all that to get to my point: we all started smoking gradually, so why not stop gradually?

Anyway, for one week, we kept a record of the exact number of cigarettes we smoked a day. Then we determined the average number of cigarettes we smoked a day. (18 for her, 16 for myself. None of that pansy light or low tar stuff for us, Benson and Hedges Menthol for her and Benson and Hedges for me.)

For one week, we limited ourselves to 15 cigarettes a day. For the next two weeks we limited ourselves to 12 a day. Every two weeks we would cut number down by four. We had timed it out, so that on Christmas day we would smoke our final four cigarettes.

Before we went to bed on Christmas day, we smoked our last cigarette and destroyed all ashtrays, lighters, a few unsmoked cigarettes, etc. in our house. We had planned it this way so that it would be our Christmas gift to each other, and also so that we would have some days off from work (both school teachers) to deal with withdrawal issues.

However, by gradually cutting back, we were able to avoid most of the physical pain associated with quitting.

This plan has worked for us. We are on our fifth week. I hope this helps someone else.

By anon62895 — On Jan 29, 2010

"I would contend, as would millions of people who have easily quit smoking, that practically all physical symptoms of nicotine withdrawal are manifest as a result of the psychological dependence on nicotine. The actual physical symptoms of withdrawal are very minor, like feeling a bit empty, hungry or a bit insecure or nervous."

If anyone disagrees with this, read Allen Carr's books thoroughly and slowly, until you fully understand what he is saying. Continue smoking while reading his books!

He has a success rate unparalleled by any other in the stop-smoking industry.

By anon62801 — On Jan 28, 2010

So i thought that the first few days were withdrawal, but damn. I think now I am really experiencing it. I am the the type to get out of bed go to the gym, and I've been doing it for the past days, but ugh. Today i am bedridden and upset at everything! But i know i will get through it. i know if i give up right now i would feel like an intense loser. I am not giving up!

By anon61892 — On Jan 23, 2010

Give Chantix a shot if you are not a depressed person. It works great but can be expensive depending on insurance. Stay away from gum/patches/lozenges. I switched from smoking to a ten year addiction on these forms of nicotine replacement therapies, and they are extremely expensive.

By anon61784 — On Jan 22, 2010

Well I'm on day 15 of quitting cold turkey. I slipped up one night 15 days ago or I'd be at week seven or so. It was a football game and beer, hanging out with an old college buddy, my excuses. I smoked seven or eight.

The next morning I felt like I was going to have to start it all over, the pain, lack of rest, etc. But it wasn't like that at all. The first few days were not great but not so bad, then it seemed like before, it was easy.

I really believe cold turkey is the way to go. It may be harder but it also gets the chemicals out of your body altogether, while the other ways bring in some chemicals like nicotine or whatever harmful crap is in that anti-smoking drug that can literally make you want to die. Taking that is just crazy!

My advice is to keep smoking instead of taking that junk.

Anyway, just quit cold turkey and if you break down and have one drag or a whole carton, just quit cold turkey again, keep trying. It isn't easy, but it's the best way to get off of the chemicals. It isn't fun but neither is the pain of cancer or other smoking related ailments.

Keep at it and it will work.

By anon61771 — On Jan 22, 2010

For the panic attacks and nerves, I would recommend Natural Calm, which is just magnesium powder you can put in water and drink. The orange tastes good. Magnesium will help you relax. Also, lots of B vitamins to help the nervous system.

By anon61769 — On Jan 22, 2010

I wanted to add that I have been giving my husband lots of supplements such as large daily doses of vitamin C, B vitamins for the nervous system, antioxidants, adrenal support, and a natural organic cleanse to pull the toxins out of the cells and brain. And lots of water to flush it all out. Fruit juices. And hot baths with epsom salts. Massages. All of these things help with withdrawal.

By anon61768 — On Jan 22, 2010

My husband quit a 30 years chewing habit. He is at six and a half weeks after quitting cold turkey. The first two weeks were hell for him and hell for me. He was angry, confused, had crying jags, the sweats and all the typical withdrawal symptoms. But he still managed to work every day. Amazing. Now he feels as if he is getting over the hump.

Still has mental cravings every day for about four hours. He is now able to start feeling emotions again. Chewing tobacco just numbs a person. The toxins are horrible. He is needing to resolve some deeply buried emotions from a long ago trauma, and all of this is finally coming out.

He wanted me to tell everyone that tobacco is hell. It causes people to lie and it ruins relationships. It turns us into people that we don't want to be. We cannot allow a little plant to control our whole lives.

He is using God's scriptures to help him through. With God's Word, he is overcoming this spirit of bondage.

By anon61675 — On Jan 21, 2010

Today is the 14th day of my quit. Last Friday i had an uncontrollable urge to do something. i really don't know quite what it was. i am an alcoholic who gave the drink up three days before the nicotine.

i think i would rather drink than smoke, but the two are so connected it's not funny.

but fri night i knew if i didn't have a drink i would smoke, so i drank. for me, it is a lot easier to quit drinking than nicotine.

the smoking just nags away at me and made me very depressed. even when i eat well and exercise running six miles a day. What the hell is wrong with me?

God help us. If anyone can tell me why i have to do one or the other or both at once and has come up with the answer i would most appreciate it.

By anon61639 — On Jan 21, 2010

this is day 21 for me. I used the patches, and instead of feeling better, i got sicker. On day 19, I took the patches off. i think they in themselves were making me sick, but i promise myself i will not smoke. i know it will be hard, and lordy there are days when i feel like i'm going to die and then ones when i feel good. i know it's not easy.

By anon61480 — On Jan 20, 2010

Thank god for this site. it has been helping me a lot. it's my third day and the cravings are really bad. I haven't even got dressed today or did my hair at all, but I know this will pass.

I feel numb all over and I am not allowed to use anything with nicotine because of an irregular heartbeat.

I guess I need a couple of words or a baseball bat to hit myself of wanting to.

If anyone has any words of wisdom for me I would love it.

By anon61467 — On Jan 20, 2010

I quit smoking on January 10. I guess that makes it oh, about ten or eleven days. I will not give in.

By anon61285 — On Jan 19, 2010

I had my last cigarette Sunday night at 9:30 p.m. Yesterday was easy. Today I feel light headed and stomach is a little upset. I am wearing the patch but after reading some posts on here think maybe I shouldn't.

I am 51 and have smoked for over 30 years. I want so badly to quit and have tried so many times. I am determined to do this time!

Please help me. I decided this time I will just take it one day at a time and each time I get the urge will just say a "Hail Mary."

By anon61027 — On Jan 17, 2010

I have finally decided to give it a hard try. I am on my day three. First two days were difficult but manageable. Playing a lot of chess to keep my mind off it, exercising daily and drinking lot of fluids.

Feeling a bit of congestion in chest. I am 28 and have been smoking 8-10 cigarettes per day since age 23. I just need to remember that even one cigarette and I would be back to where I was started. It's only cold turkey in this business.

I think I can get through this. Need some serious willpower.

By anon60552 — On Jan 14, 2010

Day 21 without nicotine! Spare yourselves the misery of nicotine gum and patches.

I chewed tobacco for 17 years. Tried quitting with nicotine gum many times and found myself addicted to the gum instead. Every time you feed your brain nicotine, withdrawal symptoms start over fresh.

Quit cold turkey! Quit all nicotine now! My milestones were hour 1, day 1, day 3, day 7 and now day 21.

I still get mild to strong cravings, but supplement 25 push-ups for a little rush! If I can do it, you can do it!

By anon60040 — On Jan 11, 2010

I quit four days ago and don't even know my own name, haha. i tried to quit before using the gum but that didn't work. it's like driving around with two gallons of gas in your tank -- not enough to get you anywhere and you know you are going to have to face the fact that soon you will be empty.

same with the gum. you are still adding nicotine to your system/so this time i quit cold turkey.

i knew it was going to be very difficult going from a pack a day to nothing, and it is, very.

But the hazards of smoking far outweigh the pain.

try breathing through a straw for only two minutes to experience what emphysema is like.

scared me to death.

we can all go on this journey together knowing we are going to be free of this awful addiction.

on top of quitting nicotine i quit drinking also last week so i have a double cross to bear.

i also live alone and have very little support.

I have major financial difficulties at present and no job.

so my stress levels are very high. but you know what? i still have me, and if i can become smoke and alcohol free, with the good lord's help, i can overcome anything.

this is our year our decade to break free.

it's hard for all of us right now, but together we can do it.

By ninoruiz — On Jan 11, 2010

After two months of not smoking. I feel better but sometimes I have a feeling of anxiety and nervousness. Did anyone experience this?

By anon59536 — On Jan 09, 2010

I am so glad I stumbled on this forum. I've had all sorts of horrible nicotine withdrawal symptoms, both physical and psychological. Chest pains and palpitations landed me in the emergency room a few days ago, where they pronounced my heart perfectly fine.

The psychological symptoms are even more disturbing. When I wear a patch, I'm fine, but if I forget to put one on, it's like there's 10 different people talking in my ear all at once, and I can't focus on anything at all. I started thinking I was completely psychotic. If I hadn't found this forum, I wouldn't have realized that these were common symptoms of nicotine withdrawal--it seems like medical professionals only minimize the effects and treat you like a whiner if you ever mention them. (Probably because so few of them are former smokers who have lived through these symptoms themselves.)

By anon59280 — On Jan 07, 2010

Today is me and my husband's 6th day straight cold turkey without a cigarette!! So proud of us! Before we decided to quit smoking my husband did the math. Realizing that if we can keep going without being smokers we will have $5,600 EXTRA a year!! AWESOME! We think. So if you think of going back DON'T do it until you add how much you'll save over a year's time and maybe with a little luck you will NOT go back to smoking! GOOD LUCK EVERYONE!! :)

By anon59091 — On Jan 06, 2010

I am in week 10 of cold turkey no smoking. I am 57 and smoked a pack a day for a good 25 years. Fortunately I have not had any of the anxiety symptoms, perhaps because I am so elated to have quit when I felt like it would never happen.

I did (and still do) have the flu like symptoms, particularly the post nasal drip, which induces a cough also from the drainage. I have been using cough medicine and claritin and it helps. My sleep schedule has pretty much returned to normal.

The first six weeks I woke up at about four hours sleep, stayed up an hour or so then back to sleep. At two months, there was some bloating for a week or so. I had a couple of sinus infections within the first six weeks.

Friends who have quit tell me that after three months you start to lose the flu like symptoms, although they can come and go for a while. I hope that is true - I am so sick of the nasal drip from hell.

My sense of smell is so acute now that a lot of food just smells sickeningly strong. As a result it has helped me avoid a weight gain, since my appetite actually increased.

Hang in there, the end results, I believe, are well worth the quitters flu. All of these horrible symptoms just reinforce how bad the nicotine addiction really is for your body.

By anon59073 — On Jan 06, 2010

I've been almost smoke free since New Year's Eve. I caved once but i hated it so much I had to throw the thing out.

I feel so sore all over though. I can't bear work at the moment to the point where I have had to take time off. I'm scared as anything that I may have lung cancer, though many of you have the same pains as I do but don't have cancer.

Ohhhhh lord though. Its hard. I have a feeling I am going to be on here lots.

By anon58898 — On Jan 05, 2010

Brentley, I too have had the strong pains through the lungs and chest. I quit on nov 30. i've had three setbacks since then. Could you tell me since you are farther into this than me: do the chest pains get better?

By anon58871 — On Jan 05, 2010

My original posting is #236. Today is day number 52. Given up chewing tobacco-cold turkey. From 30-35 times a day to nil. Still several symptoms appears for a while-though they disappear very fast. Irritation and anxiety still persists- crossing the road seems to be a problem.

However on better side. I am saving lot of money daily and started feeling and looking better. Drinking lot of water+ lot of vitamin C+, green vegetables plus two to three hours exercise.

My current stamina can be matched from my 15-20 years younger age.

By anon58860 — On Jan 05, 2010

I have only smoked a little over a year and am in my fourth day of quitting. Although I can't describe the withdrawal symptoms as severely as the previous comments, I can concede that I'm going through very similar symptoms: initial nausea, anxiety, heart palpitations and intense fatigue.

However, the cravings haven't been as intense (since I've only smoked for a year or so). I'm glad that I'm not the only one who is going through this adjustment period.

To all those who are trying to quit - keep at it, stay positive and we can all make it out of this sense of entrapment to live a more healthy, free life! Best of luck to you all!

By anon58703 — On Jan 03, 2010

i was on the habit of chewing tobacco for almost 17 years through 10 to 12 hours a day, but now after a period of six months i am completely eliminated the habit, but still i feel the need of nicotine. My hands shiver and my legs shiver, but my mind does not.

By ninoruiz — On Jan 03, 2010

Greetings to all! I'm on my 51st day without taking any cigarettes. I've been a smoker for the last 15 years. Quitting is not easy. I've experienced almost all the symptoms of withdrawal sickness. I've felt like I was going to die with all the pains. Drinking ginger tea and boiled avocado and pandan leaves is a relief. Exercising is a great help too. Good luck to all!

By anon58479 — On Jan 02, 2010

I smoked for about 18 years. I quit twice before in the past, first time for one month with the patch and the second time cold turkey because I was in the hyperbaric chamber due to an injury that made me have to quit -- six months smoke free. I was drinking one night and that made me start up again.

Now I have not had a cigarette in three weeks. I started with the chantix and it really did not help me with any type of urges, the first week on it I noticed I was getting nothing from the cigarettes yet I still wanted to smoke.

I stopped taking the chantix a little over a week ago because I felt it really was not helping me. The first three days of being smoke free were hell, the next two weeks it was better but still really bad.

Week three: I feel much better with the urges but I have to admit I really miss smoking. I have four kids and now I have to start training for a physical these are my reasons for quitting.

It's really crazy to realize how smoking has affected my life. Now trying to deal with all those times I would smoke to now nothing, it truly feels like I'm missing something that made my days normal.

I know that quitting is the best for me, it just really sucks and I hope I never smoke again. My wife still is smoking, although new years just passed and she said she is going to quit too. I feel for everyone who is going through this hell. Why did I ever start to smoke to begin with? That's what I always say now: Why?

By anon58398 — On Jan 01, 2010

Today is the first day in many many years I have got up, got a coffee and not stuck a Nicorette Gum in my mouth. I swear I have been addicted to that longer than I was to cigarettes. I chew those things all day normally and have finally decided that today is the day to get rid of them.

I feel lousy, light headed and totally fatigued but determined to break this habit.

By anon58303 — On Dec 31, 2009

I'm currently on day 22. Having quit cold turkey, something that has helped me a ton is using a quitmeter, just research it and let it save on your computer as a cookie, put it in your favorites, look at it when you crave a smoke.

It tells you how long it has been since you smoked, how many cigarettes you haven't smoked, and how much money you haven't spent on smokes, it is amazing how fast they all add up, it is insane! Try it.

By anon58233 — On Dec 31, 2009

I decided to quit cigarettes a few days ago, and I bought nicorette gum. However, I know that quitting by chewing nicotine gum is not the answer. The approach I want to try is to get myself used to chewing something instead of holding a cigarette, because sometimes I don't even crave the cigarette; I just smoke it because I'm used to it.

Later I will try to replace it with regular gum or just stop or something like that. please tell me what you think.

#248 hang in there. You should feel happy that these are withdrawal symptoms and not real sickness symptoms. If you keep smoking they will be. Good luck

By anon56940 — On Dec 18, 2009

Day five. Two days ago, started having chest pain and pressure. Started freaking out about having a heart attack. Went to the hospital yesterday, had the usual round of tests, blood, ekg etc.

The doctor told me that there was nothing wrong with me. I asked if I was having a panic attack, of course he wouldn't confirm. I'm still convinced that there is pain in my chest. I'm afraid to go to sleep at night. Who am I? I've never been scared in my life. This is awful.

By anon56885 — On Dec 18, 2009

Stay strong, smoking stinks! It is expensive, smelly, and in this day and age getting more and more socially unacceptable. It doesn't even have one advantage, really, not one. Any advantage you can think of is just a justification for your addiction. Stay the course; you will be glad you did.

By anon56730 — On Dec 16, 2009

I am on day four of my quitting and I feel appalling. I smoked about a pack to a pack and half every day, for about two years, which I know isn't a hell of a long time but still...

I have had terrible diarrhea, horrible nausea, muscle pain and gas. I barely know myself anymore. I followed someone on the street just to smell their second hand smoke, and I tore my house apart today looking for cigarettes.

I have to avoid my friends who smoke, and I just don't know what to do anymore. I don't want to smoke: I got very sick recently and it developed into severe bronchitis which was a real wake-up for me, but this is just so hard. I'm think of getting nicorette gum, will that help?

By anon56677 — On Dec 16, 2009

I quit 2 months and about 10 days ago. After a month of misery, very similar to post no. 243, I had a few very good weeks. But then I spoke too soon. Some of it is physical with general fatigue or leg cramps, some of it is psychological with impatience and irritability.

I especially miss the ability to think quickly on my feet. I think many more people would be successful quitting if the medical profession "gave it it's due." It's not about craving at this point; it's about wanting to feel like a person again. I don't see tranquilizers or anti-depressants as the answer.

By anon56453 — On Dec 15, 2009

I finally quit smoking in May after smoking a pack a day for 18 years. I broke the psychological addiction first, by reducing my daily consumption by one cigarette at a time, until I was left with one, which I smoked just when I left work for the day. In May I replaced this cigarette with a single strong mint.

It was still hell. I had no cravings after day three, but I got the quitter's flu from hell about a week in. Hands shaking, head pounding, dizziness and a cough that hurt my lungs. This website was my salvation. Knowing that other people had it as bad and managed to stay strong really helped. Week three things got better.

It's December now and I'm still smoke-free. I won't say that the thought of having a smoke doesn't cross my mind now and then, because it does. The desire passes quickly though. Stay strong, guys. It's worth it!

By anon56349 — On Dec 14, 2009

I gave up 11 days ago. I feel absolutely awful.

I hadn't been well for a while before I gave up, with stomach and back pain, which was why I decided to stop, but since then it has been a nightmare.

First few days were OK but since day three or four I have been so sick. My stomach feels poisoned, I feel completely on edge almost all the time, have pains in my leg in my lower back, headaches and nausea. I had hoped to be better by now but at the moment each day is harder than the last.

The funny thing is I don't want a cigarette at all. I feel too sick now, but I can hardly stand this pain. hope i get some relief soon.

By anon56109 — On Dec 12, 2009

The first post is right. Smoking is all in the mind. How do I know this for a fact? because i was hypnotized and went from a pack a day to nothing, no withdrawal, no food cravings etc.

Now i know how real quitters flu is, don't get me wrong. I've quit in the past and suffered all the symptoms before, but the thing is i expected it to be hard and guess what? It was hard.

You may not like to hear it because what you're feeling is very real, and it might damage your ego because you've been wearing a patch for weeks or even months? why? rip it off right now, and stop feeding your brain a poison.

By anon55823 — On Dec 09, 2009

I quit smoking 16 days ago. At first I thought I had caught some illness because of the tight chest, difficulty breathing, anxiety, sore throat, hot cold flashes, irritability, sleeplessness, fear of going to sleep, etc.

I still have panic attacks, now almost once a day. I am on Buspar (generic equivalent Buspirone) and it doesn't seem to help. Through reading I understand that caffeine and salt are bad for panic attacks too, so I will try to eliminate them from my diet as well.

I am trying to find the source of my panic attacks, so I will check into a psychologist. I am thinking it could be related to PTSD, since I was a grunt in the Marine Corps, and served in Afghanistan and Iraq during three combat tours. I never placed blame there and certainly didn't want a crutch. Now, I just want to be back to my normal self, but it looks like I will have these panic attacks for life.

Deep breathing does not help, moreover it increases the panic. The only thing that really helps is hall's cough drops (the ones with menthol in them). The soothing feeling works wonders for my anxiety. Exercise and Yoga have been implemented into my daily routine as well, but have not provided much relief as of yet. I am so glad I found this site. Thank you.

By amypollick — On Dec 07, 2009

Anon55473: About your blood pressure. Go back to your doctor and tell him/her about your symptoms, if you haven't already. See if your doctor will put you on blood pressure medication, for the short term, say a couple or three months. That should be enough time for you to get through the nicotine/sugar/caffeine withdrawals, and then you can ramp down the dosage until you're off the meds.

I've personally taken Vasotec with few, if any, side effects, and it has worked very well for me. But your doctor can recommend the best medication for your situation. Good luck!

By anon55488 — On Dec 07, 2009

I cannot believe that I am in this position again. I quit smoking in May of this year. I went through all terrible symptoms that many people described on this forum. I had nausea, tingling in my hands and feet, diarrhea, dizziness, concentration problems, panic attacks, depression, fatigue. I swore to myself that I would never start back, but I did. I smoked for about a month and a half. 3-4 cigarettes a day. Did not like the smell of them, but they make me feel better. Than I started antidepressant and got sicker with smoking. Now I quit the antidepressant and smoking again. And I feel dizzy. I cannot believe that I will go through this hell again. I should know better. I thought that if I will start smoking again, I will loose the 15 pounds that I've gained since May when I quit smoking for the first time. Silly me! Today is my first day without nicotine again. I am prepared for the hell again. Just wish me luck. I noticed that my face started itching when I started smoking again. Maybe I am allergic to nicotine? It really sucks to quit again.

God help me.

By anon55482 — On Dec 07, 2009

To poster 235: Champix has been ridiculed for these very symptoms. Your body is still going through withdrawals but refusing to acknowledge where they're coming from. Quite simply, you're upset and the medicine is still circulating in you, making you forget why.

Champix' main side effect is a tendency to entertain suicidal thoughts and.or deep depression. I had two friends who experienced the same thing. After that stuff leaves your system in a few weeks the crazy emotional landslide should subside. But do not give in to these thoughts.

You must understand that these feelings are not your own, that they are an irrational manifestation brought on by an adverse reaction to the drug. I think there's even a class action lawsuit against them. Champix has been linked to at least a handful of suicides.

Keep us updated, try quitting the normal way and get a new doctor who doesn't disregard your struggling.

By anon55473 — On Dec 07, 2009

Greetings, another one here.

I'm 22, toned and muscular, exercise constantly and work in hard labor. I'm very physically fit. I've been smoking a pack a day since I was 16, but without seeing any physical effects imagine my surprise when I checked my blood pressure and it was at 175/90.

I quit smoking, drinking caffeine, consuming sugar and am really, really trying to cut back on salt. My blood sugar levels are way below concern, but my blood pressure is climbing. I'm assuming this has to do with the withdrawals.

I quit because my blood pressure was too high, I'm on day five, and my blood pressure is still either the same or worse, and I'm worried that quitting is actually going to kill me. I can take the cravings, I can take the nausea, the chest pain, the sleeplessness, the constipation, but I'm worried that the effect all this is having on my already insane blood pressure is going to make my heart just give up.

This is the most bizarre catch 22 I've ever experienced. Any advice?

By anon55337 — On Dec 07, 2009

Hi, I would like to share my feeling after quitting chewing tobacco after around 20 years.

I was using as high as 30-35 doses in a day. At times even maintaining the level was more problematic as I have to double the dose. Thank god it is my fourth week after quitting.

The feelings are very good, but still the cloudiness of mind prevails. It seems like I am still not on my own. Doing exercise up to three hours a day.

The most important change is that, now tiredness due to exercise is missing. How long would it take to clear the mind?

By anon55235 — On Dec 06, 2009

I'm really pleased i found this site. i have been off the cigs for four weeks now. I've been on the champix for three weeks but i've stopped taking them as i felt sick all the time. since i've stopped taking the champix this is a nightmare.

i feel so down, crying all the time, can't eat, don't want to drink. My taste has changed so much, i don't like fluids now.

i have never felt so low in my life. i have no interest in anything and can't sleep. i went to the doctor and she said it was not due to quitting but i think it is.

If i knew i would feel like this i would have never quit. i don't want to go back on the cigs but i just want to feel like my old self. has anyone else felt like this?

By anon54873 — On Dec 02, 2009

This is a great web site for people quitting. I'm on day seven of quiting the smokes. I've smoked a pack a day or more for 25 years and was just looking around for withdrawal symptoms and found this place after day three of quitting. I had horrible cold sweats then i passed out. when i woke up my family was looking at me getting ready to call 911.

i was so scared i went to the hospital and i got an ekg, chest x rays and a cat scan and a urine sample. After all was said and done the doctor said everything came back normal. then i asked him if it had anything to do with me quitting smoking and then he looked at me and said "Why didn't you tell me that?" i didn't even think of it -- don't know why.

Anyway, he recommended starting off with the patch and sent me home. Two days later i started the patch after seeing my doctor. hopefully this will work out well. i have hope that on the patch i can focus and are not fuzzy headed. Good luck to all.

By anon53905 — On Nov 25, 2009

I haven't smoked in two days. I'm finding it really hard but I'm determined not to start again. i feel sick. i have head aches and also am very snappy at people for no reason. The nurse at my local doctor's put me on the lozenges. the taste is unreal, but I'm hoping i will no longer have the craving to smoke.

By anon52466 — On Nov 14, 2009

well i quit six days ago after smoking two packs a day for 20 years. i went cold turkey. Within 12 hours i had extreme nausea and heartburn every day for three days. the symptoms then halved in intensity. i used alka seltzer and it helped, along with with ginger ale and crackers. I had headaches too for three days. Anyway, at about day five i feel normal actually better than normal because i always had cigarette hangovers in the morning and now i don't. Also, even smells made me sick during the first four days. it was rough but day is here and i feel good.

Two things prevented me from smoking: the sickness and the thought of me going through withdrawals again. Anyway the cravings aren't that bad --they come and go -- but if you could avoid them for three minutes they usually disappear.

By anon51689 — On Nov 08, 2009

Is there some point when the nicotine receptors in the brain stop begging for nicotine? At the five week point, I am finally starting to feel better physically. But I am now more irritable, unable to focus, all the typical stuff. I certainly can't go the rest of my life like this either.

By anon51292 — On Nov 04, 2009

This is to the post 212, thank you, you are an inspiration to me, and you are right. Every day will get better even as you suck back those hard candies or chew gum til your teeth ache, and believe me, I do both, sleep now involves ten hours a night, and I answer to no one, except myself, in my quest to quit smoking, and as usual, it involves rather nasty withdrawal. However, when I look at myself in the mirror, I see me at 90, not dead at 60. Good luck, all.

By anon51291 — On Nov 04, 2009

I smoked while I was happy, sad, angry, depressed, with coffee, after meals, before breakfast, during parties, during ice storms, thunderstorms, outside in the middle of winter at twenty below, after funerals, before christenings, and on my lunch breaks, which did not, after several years, involve lunch at all, and basically, smoked when I could, if I could, and revolved my life around it all to the point that at 3 a.m. I was waking up, having a loo break, and picking up a cigarette after. Talk about rewarding a dog to go out.

I firmly believe that after forty years of smoking, I came to the conclusion that I picked up that first one, and therefore, I refuse to pick up the last, and this is the way it is going to be. I will not smoke again. It has been eight weeks of particular hell, but worse, when I think that I lost 40 years of not knowing who I was without a cigarette to make things better. Maybe it is time to grow up.

God bless all of you out there, and stay strong.

By anon50416 — On Oct 28, 2009

I haven't had much withdrawal at all, I used hypnosis to quit after smoking 1 to 1.5 packs a day for 20 years.

I quit a couple times before, once for five months once for two months, and again for two months, each time using the patch but this time, using only hypnosis, it's much easier. I got a quit-smoking CD set. A guy named Trevor Scott, and I followed the program faithfully, and it was amazing to me to stop with no patches. I'm still amazed I did it. I'd recommend it, I know other people who used hypnosis to quit too. Some people go to a hypnotherapist (expensive!) and other people get CDs to listen to them as often as need be, on their own time. it's good, there are several sets on the market to choose from. The hypnosis fills your mind with the thoughts that you don't have withdrawal, etc, and it's amazing how it helps with the fear factor etc.

Good luck.

By anon50142 — On Oct 26, 2009

Have been smoking for about 20 cigarettes a day for around 25 years. Tried to quit several times, the longest was about eight months. I have tried Zyban, nicotine gum and patch.

About three years ago, I started to cut down on smoking and started the nicotine chewing gum. For New Year’s resolution (2009), I quit smoking. I was smoking about eight cigarettes a day plus nicotine chewing gum while only had nicotine chewing gum on the weekends.

About six weeks ago, I decided to quit the chewing gum so I used the 14mg nicotine patch for a week.

Now I am nicotine free for about five weeks. I think I feel all the withdrawal symptoms listed here. I feel a slight improvement in my condition but I still feel hard to focus and concentrate, and avoid having long conversations because words do not get pronounced. Leg muscles and all the joints hurt. Head still feels dizzy.

My condition gets worst in the evening. I try to rest and avoid talking much to anyone, including family and friends because I may lose my temper.

I can’t wait to feel normal. I think two more months to go. God willing!

By anon50107 — On Oct 26, 2009

Day six. I wasn't sure I wanted to keep this up. I was a smoker (4 cig/day) for almost 30 years. Other sites that talk about the immediate benefits of quitting are incredibly discouraging. I'm feeling worse each day, not better. Food tastes terrible, smells are unbearable, the shaking, anxiety, aches and pains, sweating, inability to concentrate or function on any level. Why am I doing this again? But, fortunately for me, I found this site, and I will continue today. I'll let you all know how I am tomorrow.

By anon50034 — On Oct 25, 2009

I am glad I have found this site. I am into week five of non smoking, was a pack and a half a day smoker for almost forty years. This is the third time I have quit, and this time, I do believe I am going to make it. The withdrawal symptoms have been bad this week, the urge is there in the back of my mind all the time, but funnily enough, when I now smell cigarette smoke on someone else, it smells bad, ha ha ha, so I guess I will survive this after all, and will just hang in there and remind myself that I am feeling better not lighting up. And I do feel better, I am feeling much more energetic, and will wonders ever cease, actually have times where I forget about smoking at all, so all I can say is, good luck to everyone out there, hang in for the long haul, and remember that we are all in the same boat, with the same purpose, to stop being addicted! Yahoo!

By anon49898 — On Oct 23, 2009

I'm not taking medication to help quit, but I can say say that after 18 days, I'm definitely sleeping a lot more than I used to. The other surprising thing is that most people seem to overeat when depressed (e.g. quitting smoking). I overeat when I'm happy, and would rather not eat when irritable or agitated. Therefore, I'm dropping weight pretty fast, which concerns me.

By anon49625 — On Oct 21, 2009

I have been a smoker for 10 years and quit three days ago on Champix. Since quitting I have been very fatigued. sleeping 13 hours a day. It seems all I can think about is sleep. Is this normal, and how long should it last?

By anon49255 — On Oct 19, 2009

Two weeks today, no nicotine. A friend once said, "Be prepared for 2 months of hell, then it's all over." After a few days of no more coughing and hacking, that's back again. This is a slow, miserable process.

By anon49065 — On Oct 17, 2009

I am so relieved to see that I am not the only one going through what I am going through. I quit eight days ago and I was so irritable and cranky and downright mean. Now I feel like I have the flu. Coughing, body aches, headaches, and some fever. Shortness of breath as usual, but not as bad as when I lit up (1-2 packs a day). I really am mad at myself for ever getting addicted to nicotine, so now I must face the consequences and hope this ends soon. Everyone: Keep up the good work! We can do it!

By anon48592 — On Oct 13, 2009

Thank god for this website. I really thought I was going crazy. On day three and having crazy withdrawals, but also have the flu to mix in with that. Weirdest thing I've had from this is the dreams in which I light one up and wake up almost panicking from regret of smoking, it seems so real. Also happened with pot when I quit.

By anon48228 — On Oct 10, 2009

Hey everyone! I've been a smoker for 8 years. I'm two days into my quit. This will be the third time I've tried to quit this year. I've been sleeping a lot, eating *lots* of ice-cream, and experiencing stabbing pains in my ribcage as well as racing-thoughts and heart palpitations. I think I can deal though. What I'm *truly* worried about it going back to work. I'm unemployed due to this recession nonsense. I've been a waitress since the age of 18 and truly hate the industry with a passion. I'm trying to look for work in a different field, but it's not looking good. I just don't know if I can deal with all those needy, drunk, rude creeps without a cigarette break! We'll see though. I pray I don't have to go back to that life!

By anon48136 — On Oct 09, 2009

I am a prior smoker. I just decided to go cold turkey.I smoked cigs for 13 years. I am now 40 years old. My first couple of weeks of stopping were not too bad, besides the urge to smoke. Then after a month and still to this day I am having terrible withdrawals from smoking. I have anxiety attacks and heart fluttering. Like others I have been to the emergency room on three different occasions, due to palpations and anxiety. It really is a scary feeling to feel like you are about to have a heart attack at any moment. Like those cancer sticks, I hope that this will pass too. But I have never been happier about my decision to quit. I never knew that the withdrawal would be so bad, and I'm currently doing this without help. Pray for me that I make it through this terrible time of withdrawal. I refuse to ever smoke another cigarette in my life! Much love and strength to all the quitters.

By anon48118 — On Oct 09, 2009

I am 55, started smoking in 1973, smoked weed too, but stopped that with no problem, no withdrawal. Nicotine is a legal drug. I found out that the people who created the additives in cigarettes don't smoke! Why are people making such a big deal about cannabis, which is not addictive but legalize nicotine which is more addictive than heroin. Are these people crazy? I plan to do what one of the posters said, and that is try American Spirit and/or the e-cig. I want to quit, I am tired of spending 2,000 a year on cigs.

By anon48092 — On Oct 09, 2009

Those who say it gets easier after three days must be the same folks who brought us the wonderful food pyramid! Do all of us now count grams of fat before deciding whether to clog up the grocery aisles? Lots of terrible advice, and from people who obviously never smoked a day in their lives. A crisp salad or a brisk walk must be the answer! Yeah, that must be it. It's day five, which started OK, but now I'd like to start a fight with any takers. Oh, you can add coughing up junk and sweats/chills to the ever changing symptom list.

By anon47965 — On Oct 08, 2009

What's with the sensitivity to light and blurred vision? It's like all of my senses are different after four days. I smell things in my house and car that I did not used to smell. Food does not smell or taste the same, and it's not necessarily better. Still dealing with general aches and pains, sporadic dizziness with a few palpitations, and breathing that's more difficult than before. Unlike many, I'd be happy to sleep more than usual and eat less than usual. Not the usual insomnia and overeating thing in my case. What an amazingly physically difficult experience!

By anon47958 — On Oct 08, 2009

Hey guys. Buckingham County Virginia again. Let me say and make myself perfectly clear. In quitting, withdrawal is different for everyone. There are no set symptoms. Still not smoking. And plan to keep on trucking. And the conquest continues. You can do it! Yay. Smiles

By cyndyragan — On Oct 07, 2009

Hey everyone 90 days now! I am constantly clearing my throat which makes it extremely raw and sore. I ask other people about their withdrawal and they seem to have not remembered it or breezed right through it! I now go to the gym, way more active with my kids and am not a slave to the nicodemon. I will keep you posted as to how long the throat will be sore. Keep up the good quit.

By anon47785 — On Oct 07, 2009

Hi Everyone! So exciting. It's Day 22. I am a 30 year smoker (except when pregnant) -- almost one pack a day. Someone said This will be as hard as you decide to make it. He was right. I am excited to kick this nasty habit that was making me ill. I had chest pains, headaches, coughing, shooting pains in my legs from poor blood circulation and was bloated from lack of oxygen. I feel great and all symptoms have gone away. I decided to quit because I don't want to spend the second half of my life dealing with cancer. No way! Cancer is a lottery but you can lessen your odds. I personally like the quit symptoms because it means my body is healing and ridding itself of years of garbage. I do power walks now and always walked when cravings were bad like the first week. The second week was easy but insomnia is a bummer but it will pass. Third week I was a b*tch. Oh well. 30 years of the truth comin' out! Good luck and keep it simple.

By anon47604 — On Oct 06, 2009

it's been four days and i've been experiencing chills, sweats, sore throat, nasty post nasal drip, and just generally hacking up of green stuff. i've been talking to friends who have quit who said they haven't experienced any of this. at least now when i see a cigarette i want to vomit instead of smoke one. at least it's good to know others are suffering through similar symptoms too!

By anon47458 — On Oct 05, 2009

Thanks to all who have described the physical symptoms. I now know I'm not alone. I can deal with being irritable, tired, and queasy, but the forceful heartbeat, dizziness when standing up quickly, chest tightness, and muscle aches are no joking matter. More or less, I got addicted to the patch and used it way too long (but still smoked at night, etc). I got tired of feeling winded when wanting to do things I used to enjoy (e.g. yard work), and developed a dry, hacking, chronic cough that everyone around me must have recognized for what it was. I told people it was allergies, but who was I fooling? Time will tell how much damage has been done, and how much is reversible. Thanks, all, and keep the faith!

By anon46890 — On Sep 29, 2009

After smoking for 20 years, I quit for a week now. I am really happy, I did so and feel the fresh air. All I did was clean a smoker's place in the campus. That's it, Next day I stopped smoking. The day was tough because I was heavy smoker( 10-12 cigs/day). I left office two hours early, went home and slept. I told all my family and friends and coworkers. It is now a week! Looks I am there almost! and confident that will make it. No pills, no patches, no gums, but just will power drove me out of stinky life. Keep trying, people! Dev

By anon46655 — On Sep 27, 2009

Buckingham County Virginia here. I started smoking in 1972. Loved seeing tobacco growing in the fields. The smell and best of all the taste. God I loved smoking. I am 55 years old and for health reasons knew I *had* to stop if I wanted to continue living. I remember the adds on TV back in the day in black and white. "Winston tastes good like a cigarette should." Fact is, they kill. Seen it first hand growing up. But I didn't care. I loved them that much. The symptoms of going through the withdrawals are like nothing I have ever experienced in my life. I had just made up my mind that that part of my life was over. The hallucinations and sweating were the worst for me. The first week I just slept. Each day though it gets better and better. Two months now. Since I stopped cold cold turkey. I think the thing that really helped me was I never smoked in my house. I think that once you finally make up your mind to do it, do it. Everything falls in place. But each individual is different. And life goes on. Good luck to you.

By anon46078 — On Sep 22, 2009

I smoked black and mild cigars for six months then four to five cigs daily for six months. I went to the ER with back pain and was diagnosed with a pulmonary embolism - a blood clot in my lung. I'm better now, not sure if it was smoking related but it doesn't matter. I got the experience of what it's like to face a possibly terminal lung problem and I'm done for good. I experienced typical withdrawals and cravings. It was annoying but what do you want? Good things take effort!

By cyndyragan — On Sep 17, 2009

Hi Everyone my original post was #166, my successful quit date is was in July so I am in my ninth week now. I can tell you I don't think much about smoking. I gained 27 pounds but hey I am tackling that one too. I have found for me the thing I most notice now is how easily I get sick. It seems I catch everything that crosses my path. I have currently had a sore throat for a week, after getting rid of the sore throat three weeks ago! I joined weight watchers, and I take vitamin c(500 mgs) along with a one a day vitamin every day. I love not smoking. You guys have accomplished the most important thing you can ever do for yourselves, your children and your families! Do not give up!

By anon45459 — On Sep 17, 2009

I have smoked for about nine years, starting with 3-5 a day and moving to 15 a day the past 6-7 years. I'm on day seven of quitting cold turkey and I haven't experienced any physical withdrawal, and only minor cravings. I think I may be avoiding the symptoms because I also smoke marijuana occasionally, and over the first six days I got high four nights before bed. Marijuana always helps me sleep, and reduces my anxiety, although I don't consider myself an inherently anxious person. On the third night, I suffered my only intense pang, and I *really* wanted a smoke. I called my friend and smoked a joint and completely forgot about the craving. I went home and slept soundly and awoke rested and a day closer to being free of tobacco. Perhaps it is futile to replace one vice with another, but pot is a much easier habit to break. I never have any trouble giving it up for long stretches, and it really has been helping me thus far. You don't need to become a pothead. For those who struggle with insomnia, nighttime anxiety or those who just suffer from a smoking fixation, supplementing a bit of pot before bedtime can be the difference between long panic-stricken, stress-filled nights and calm, well rested ones. Obviously, pot isn't for everyone. Those prone to paranoia may want to avoid this strategy as marijuana can induce paranoid thoughts, which may lead to worse psychological withdrawal symptoms. Also, those quitting primarily for respiratory health should avoid pot because it contains more tar than tobacco, although pot-smokers usually don't smoke 20-plus joints per day by themselves.

By anon45318 — On Sep 15, 2009

First of all, great posts to read and to know others are experiencing the same symptoms, a real good support. I've been smoke free two months, after 20 years of smoking. Like others on here, I've been to the doc several times for heart, chest, etc issues (thought I was dying) and had all the tests done (EKG, heart echo stress, etc) and all is fine. Even after two months, it seems that no real end is in sight. I still suffer random anxiety attacks, random chest tightness, headaches, tiredness, stomach issues, etc. Anybody out there smoke free for more than two months and know what symptoms should I expect? Thanks, this site really gives me support. :-)

By anon45302 — On Sep 15, 2009

I just came back from doctors office as i had heart palpitations going on for three days. My EKG was normal but my pressure was a bit high and then the second reading proved to be normal. Now i see there are others too, having the same symptoms. thanks for helping out. Cheers.

By anon45285 — On Sep 15, 2009

Hey everyone, I just quit smoking three days ago and I feel fantastic. Now normally, I don't buy into self help books, but I was so desperate that I tried Allen Carr's Easy Way to Quit Smoking, and it actually worked. I know that I haven't "given up" anything and am simply purging a poison from my body. You don't need nicotine to survive. You got along without it before you started smoking and you damn sure can afterwards. Good luck everybody and remember to enjoy this wonderful second chance you have achieved!

By anon45115 — On Sep 13, 2009

199-- To reassure you, I'm at the 3 1/2 month mark and I still get chest discomfort and a pounding pulse all the way down my arm. It's way milder than before. I had an ekg and thyroid tests done, but didn't get further exams (i.e. a heart sonogram or stress test) because I couldn't afford to. A lot of people get every test in the book done only to find out they're perfectly okay. I look at it this way, if there was something wrong with my heart, my health would have probably deteriorated over the past few months, not gotten better. Exercise helps work out the circulation stuff. Just give it some more time. Hope this helps ease the tension.

By anon45061 — On Sep 13, 2009

I've talked to two people recently - one quit smoking five years ago and just took it up again (to be fair, her mother died in a terrible accident) and a neighbor who told me she stopped smoking for 21 months and just had a cigarette last week. (Don't know if she started up again or just had one). Hearing these people really makes me feel like giving up. I won't, but boy oh boy, nicotine really does a number on people. I haven't smoked for five weeks, and I still have the urge to but so far haven't given in. The withdrawal symptoms apparently will take quite a while before they stop. I've been having stuffy sinuses (which is another symptom I guess) and some anxiety. I've started walking to work and back - a total of about an hour of walking a day. I was taking Chantix but quit after eight weeks but I still have the pills if I trip up. I am happy I quit but this is like a full time job, this not smoking stuff!

By anon44908 — On Sep 11, 2009

This is a great blog. I am in the third month. I am better than before. No other symptoms. I still have some anxiety in the morning and feel sensations in my chest sometimes. I met with my doctor and he said it will take time. Can anyone tell me if i really need to worry about these abnormal sensations in the left side of the chest?

By anon44842 — On Sep 10, 2009

I found this site because I have been trying to quit smoking ever since I started. In a nutshell, my first cig was when I was 14. I am 28 now. I have tried everything. My grandma died in the hospital next to someone who died from using the patch. I chewed the gum off and on. One day while driving I suffered a severe panic attack while chewing the gum. I now am on colozapan and just got off of Welbutrin which I feel made me angry. This has just been such a struggling battle for me. I think it is nighttime and weekends when I am at my worst. I try to stay busy but it's not enough. It is good to know I am not alone with this. The only advice I have is that you really can't just have one. It sucks.

By anon44704 — On Sep 09, 2009

Hi, I quit smoking in May and had just a few relapses since. I do not smoke anymore. I started having dry mouth and sinuses after I quit smoking, and it is still dry after almost four months. Anybody can relate? Dryness after quitting smoking?

By anon44426 — On Sep 08, 2009

I smoked for 12 years and have been clean for three months. I just want the pain to stop.

By anon44267 — On Sep 06, 2009

I'd like to thank everyone who has posted their withdrawal symptoms from nicotine.

I quit a 30 year cigarette habit eight months ago and substituted the cigarettes with chewing tobacco. I decided to quit chewing tobacco and I've been clean for two weeks.

After two weeks, I still have trouble sleeping and feel somewhat "out of it." My anxiety level is decreasing by the day, but I still get dizzy from time to time. Earlier in my withdrawal, I would wake up a couple times each night gasping for air. It's like I forgot to breath during my sleep. That symptom is also slowly dissipating. I didn't know that symptoms from nicotine withdrawal can last more than a few days. Due to reading this message board, I now know that the symptoms can last much longer and that I'm not going nuts. Thanks again.

By anon44208 — On Sep 05, 2009

To answer the sweating question - I didn't know this was a symptom of nicotine withdrawal but it is. I get really warm, sometimes at night, sometimes during the day. Never know when it's coming on, but this is minor compared to some of the other symptoms!

By anon44207 — On Sep 05, 2009

It will be a month on Labor Day that I've quit smoking. Hardest thing I've ever done. I guess the cravings are gone but the urge still lingers on. So far, I'm defeating those urges to smoke!

By anon44170 — On Sep 05, 2009

I'm on day 15 of becoming a non-smoker. I smoked at least a pack a day for 30 years and have tried other methods to quit in the past. I'm using Chantix this time and thought I would pass these ideas along. To combat the anxiety, my doctor prescribed .25 mm of Xanax and I take a small dosage of Lunesta to sleep at night. I'm not big on taking a lot of drugs, but these are helping me get through the tough times right now and I believe will continue to help me be successful. I plan to delete the Xanax as soon as possible, but like my husband, said when I was delaying taking it, "Why make yourself miserable if you don't have to and if your doctor prescribed it?" I can still feel the urges but I believe those are lessened because of the Chantix and Xanax and I still have the fatigue. I have realized that making myself get up and do any type of activity helps a lot. The only symptoms I have had are the cravings, fatigue, constipation, and irritability. I don't know if I escaped all the others because of the Chantix, but I'm grateful either way. As I said, I'm not big on taking a lot of drugs but if prescribed by a doctor and it helps you get through this extremely tough time, then why not? Just wanted to share. Good luck to all of you!

By anon43986 — On Sep 03, 2009

I am 63 and I have been a smoker since I was 17 years old. I have been clean for 3 weeks, and the only major problem I am having is this sweating. I wake up in the middle of the night soaked. I sleep in front of the fan. Now today seems better, and maybe the weather is a little cooler, but nobody else is sweating but me. Has anybody else had this problem?

By anon43754 — On Sep 01, 2009

Okay, here’s my quitting story. It starts out a little rough but ends up ultimately hopeful, so bear with me: About mid May I decided I was going to quit smoking so I could work out again (jogging/weights/whatever). I had leftover nicotine gum from the last time I quit, so I started chewing that at work during the day, so that when I went to go work out, I would have less of a hard time breathing. However, like a moron, I continued to smoke at night. I had no idea what mixing gum and cigs did, but I soon learned. My health progressively deteriorated over the next two weeks. I quit the gum but continued to smoke. My doctor told me that I probably spiked on the nicotine and then continued to do so every time I lit up. I started having palps, extreme shortness of breath, panic attacks, and hypertension without knowing what was happening. I never made the connection that it was the nicotine, that’s how out of it I was. The last cigarette I smoked actually induced a full on poisoning. I had a burning throat, had parasthesia, and could not form a clear thought. I thought I was losing my mind, or worse, dying. I quit in June, went to the doctor where he made this all clear to me, and prescribed me Wellbutrin. The worst was over, but the next two and a half months were hell. Going from such a high nicotine level to nothing caused every withdrawal symptom in the book. I felt like I couldn’t do anything. I was a shell of my former out-going, fun-loving self. I made another doctor’s appointment, this time with a neurologist, because I couldn’t believe that two months in, this could all still be withdrawal. He told me something helpful. He told me that smoking was covering up a latent anxiety disorder, and a lot of these symptoms were results of this anxiety. I had always used smoking as a coping mechanism, overdosing on it and the subsequent withdrawal released this panic monster that was always there. This doc has been doing work with withdrawal for 25 years, so I fully respect his opinion. I used to be the type that mocked people who complained about how hard quitting is. Saying it was simply a battle of will. I was so wrong. So those of you experiencing severe symptoms, it may be that quitting caused anxiety which is causing your symptoms. He prescribed me xanax, and I refused to fill out the prescription. I refuse to be a slave to any substance. I need to confront this thing head on. This site has been an inspiration to me and I felt I should give back. It helped me understand that there are others like me out there. But I feel there’s a lot of complaining here and not enough of these stories end happily. So here’s my hopeful part: I’m on week 13, I can actually run now, my attitude is bright (even better than when I was smoking), and I can see the light at the end of the tunnel. My hands still shake, my heart will pound without reason, and my nerves are still building back up, but I feel infinitely better than before. I’m getting my life and health back and it will be better than ever.

By anon43719 — On Sep 01, 2009

I lost my darling mum to lung cancer when I was 26, and my dad to stroke (also smoking related) two years ago. I really want to encourage all the people who are trying to give up smoking to do it for your children if not for yourself. Even your future children if you haven't got any yet. My great sadness was that my mum was not able to meet her five grandchildren, or see my brother get married. She was a lovely lady, but didn't really grasp the dangers of smoking that we are aware of nowadays. My mum and dad are not around to tell me about the past and share in my achievements and joys. I have no one to tell about my kids' successes and failures and I had no one to invite to their school performances, etc. All this sorrow for your kids and grand kids just for the 'pleasure' of a cigarette?

By tannersmom — On Aug 29, 2009

My name is Angie and I started smoking when I was 12 years old. I am 41 now. Smoking is all I and my lungs have ever known. Today is my sixth day of not smoking. I hate it. I loved to smoke.

But I am going to stick to it for my son, I promised him. I am tired all the time, grumpy, can't sleep at night. I tell people to just call me snapper now. LOL! I am usually a very active person. So being tired has been my worst withdrawal symptom. I have picked up walking 2 miles a day after supper. Hoping to keep the pounds off. Also hoping to start getting in better shape. My husband still smokes. It doesn't bother me at all. I knew if I was going to quit I had to be able to still be around smokers and be able to fight the urge. Every day I look for an excuse to start back up. But every day I replay in my mind what my son said to me. As I lay in bed one night my son came in and laid beside me, and as I looked down at him he was crying. I said "Son what happened?" and he said "Mommy I don't want you to die!" (makes me cry as I write this to you.) He said, "Mommy my heart feels like it is breaking". He started sobbing, I tried to calm him down and I couldn't. He just cried and cried. I told him I would always be here for him. As I lay there I made a promise to him and god. I will stop smoking. I want to see my son grow up. For you Tanner I will make it through this. For you god please every day I ask for the strength. this is the hardest thing I have ever done in my life! I am glad I found this site because I am going to need all your help and support too. I will be here as well for all of you. we can do this!

By anon43497 — On Aug 29, 2009

I quit smoking last Tuesday, almost four days now. I have quit two times before and both times were pretty easy. Unfortunately, this time has been a living hell. I have a sick feeling in my stomach, like when someone has died, and cry a lot, looking for support. I honestly don't want a cigarette -- Ijust want these horrible feelings to go away.

By anon43294 — On Aug 27, 2009

Thanks for this site. Here's my experience so far.

Two weeks in. I still wake up with occasional deep coughs. Sometimes there's even a fleck of blood (needle head sized, very small) in my mucus if I cough really really hard.

But every day I'm chronically detached/dizzy. That's never subsided. Except when I go swimming.

I get these awful chest pains that scare the hell out of me. But sometimes it's followed by big burps. I've read it could be gas pushing up into my chest, and just plain ol' heartburn.

And the constipation... Good god. Is that what giving birth feels like? Plus it's green. Nasty.

Anyhow, today started to get dizzy spells. It's really annoying. But I take wellbutrin which honestly has wiped out my cravings.

I'm just glad to know that I'm not the only one going through this. Thanks for the site. :)

By anon42407 — On Aug 20, 2009

I am now at almost 14 weeks quit. Anxiety is better but still rears it's ugly head every now and then. I'm still dizzy, but not so bad, and every now and then get the heart palps (chest flutters whatever the heck that is I'm feeling) but all in all am doing better. I am experiencing depression that I don't when I smoke but I'd rather live with that than spend all the money I was spending on cigarettes and ruining my health.

Everybody hang in there. It slowly gets better. I look forward to the week where I feel "normal" every day, but at least I am having some days where I don't feel like I'm going to die and I can breathe!

By anon42181 — On Aug 19, 2009

I just read 183's post about quitting Kodiak. I chewed Kodiak for 16 years an have been free from it for one year and one month. Cold turkey. No meds, nothing. I did one can per day, no stopping, so when I quit, I experienced morning stomach aches, insomnia, trouble staying asleep all night, daytime fatigue, depression, sudden frantic thoughts, sadness that feeling that you describe about wanting to cry for no real reason.

I think this is all part of the ballgame though with this stuff. One can of chew contains 144 mill. of nicotine or equal to 4 packs of cigarettes. In other words, you were basically doing four packs a day. This will take some time and you can't expect to feel perfect right away. That anxiety stuff I've been dealing with all along. Though I'm starting to have better days.

By anon41778 — On Aug 17, 2009

I quit Kodiak 3 weeks ago - since then I have been in the ER twice for anti anxiety drugs. I feel tired, I feel alone, I want to cry and I am getting tingly all over my body - face, arms, legs. I have had blood testing and it all comes out great! I just want to wake up and not feel this anymore. I have no symptoms at night when I sleep - but they start when I get to work. And I chewed all day at work - pop a dip in all day long. When will this feeling of tingly go away?

By anon41693 — On Aug 17, 2009

Well i quit cold turkey after smoking for 31 years. All it took was a heavy chest one night and a commercial showing a man about 55 wearing one of those oxygen things, too worn out to walk. That's when i realized i would work all my life, hoping to retire and end up like that: nailed to a chair wheezing, wishing i was dead. I also realized after about a week of no sleep, yelling at my wife, that there is nothing wrong with using the patch to ease the anxiety; it does work. Then i cut it in half and used a half patch for about three weeks, then nothing. You need to adjust it for you. Add a good measure of honest prayer and there you have it. You will trade crappy health for the need to manage stress, etc. in a real way, but you will never regret it. Nobody gets to avoid the withdrawal nightmare but hang in there. Consider it for what it is, a drug more addicitive than heroin, and when you beat it, you are a monster in the character department. It is a success as important than any other. Chilly.

By anon41174 — On Aug 13, 2009

Is anyone having problems with breathing after quitting? I'm trying to find information on the web about when breathing should get better after quitting smoking, but haven't found anything that gives a clear idea of when breathing gets better. I know some will have COPD, but even with that, breathing should get a little better when they quit smoking. Anyone have any info about this?

By marsha1 — On Aug 11, 2009

The last two posts grabbed my heart --actually, all the posts do. Nicotine is what it is: a drug. Period. It totally messes with the central nervous system, which is key to everything in the human body. My smoke was my best friend every day for 40 years. Do not feel guilty if you relapsed. Ego loves that. Hey, Lincoln said "it's been my experience that folks with no vices have very few virtues." So let's not beat ourselves up. The fact that any of you even write in here means you have heart. Earth born is an addicion to form, be it food, alcohol and drugs, relationships. Espousing freedom but dedicated to bondage. We are all trying to fill a hole we forgot so long ago, just behind the belly button. How else could one's button be pushed? I am just understanding: you are myself. Refuse separation. This entire matrix was designed very well. Once understood, reach through it. And, frankly, the only reason I quit smoking was the slavery mode I felt to 'it' and then the breath in meditation (hard to hold it in when you have none:). And, then again, this is all nonsense too. Clarify with Self what your Divine plan is (God's Will) and let it reveal itself to you. Do what you will, but *never* beat yourself up -- ever. You are God's experience, as you are Him. In Love, M

By anon40692 — On Aug 10, 2009

In the morning, two cigarettes on the way to work -- maybe three? Just enough to kill the feelings of dread and despair, caused by smoking.

Lunchtime, two, maybe three? After which the mind and body felt dead and dying.

Two on the way home, or three? Then another with coffee right when I get home -- feeling of death and hopelessness.

Ears clogged up, tendons drying up, extremeties tingling, pulsating pain in head, harbinger of a future stroke.

My children greeting me with open arms when I get home, "Daddy!" At age 33 too tired to give them piggy-back rides.

Picture my children standing around my casket, never to say the word "Daddy" again.

Day 4 cold turkey for me, this is very hard, but facing the certainties I was facing was harder.

By anon40591 — On Aug 09, 2009

I relapsed today. It is my 14 week of quitting. I was so depressed and decided to smoke a cigarette. I feel very guilty, but I had this dry mouth and dry nose for almost 3 months now,and I know that I never had this problem before. My nose and mouth are so dry that is making me miserable. I smoked this awful cigarette, and it seems like it give me more saliva in my mouth and my nose is not as dry. What is with that? I feel horrible that i relapsed, but I have a question to everybody: do you experience this dry mouth and nose or it is only me? Thank you if somebody will let me know. I will try to stay away from this worms in the future, I promise. I hope God will forgive me. I am so depressed about my relapse.

By anon40084 — On Aug 06, 2009

I gave up 4 weeks yesterday. up until monday i was using the patches but had started to feel a bit sick when i had them on so i have stopped wearing them and am OK!! The only problem is that i can't sleep. I wake up about 4 times in the night and then end up getting up really early! how long does this take to go away?

I'm lovely not being a smoker!! Well done everyone - keep up the good work.

By anon39394 — On Aug 01, 2009

i quit for nine months and didn't have a problem, but now 10 years later i'm trying to quit again and it is not so easy. i have no want to have a cig but my physical symptoms are very real. What you forget is that all people experience different withdrawals and different levels of them so just because you and others didn't have it bad means nothing, sir, so don't go saying that they're not real. please instead maybe encourage them. that's what this site is for

By anon39233 — On Jul 31, 2009

I am Vince, 31 years old from the Philippines. I'm on my 30th day of my nicotine free lifestyle. I consumed it for almost half of my halftime. On the first few days of my abrupt stopping on smoking, I have to be confined in a hospital because I was having the worst symptoms I ever had in my life. My heart was racing and pounding like I was having a heart attack, my hands and feet are sweating. It felt like my surroundings are spinning. It felt like am going to vomit. My nose was congested. My stomach was crumbling. The doctor has to do a battery of tests on me, EKG, complete blood chem, thyroid, lipid profile, ultrasounds on my heart and stomach, x-rays, all turn out to be normal. Then it sinked in, I was having a terrible nicotine withdrawal. It felt like I was going to die. I felt so horrible. I actually lost 15 to 20 pounds because of that. My appetite spiraled down and I had this panic attacks everyday.

Then things started to subside after a couple of weeks. My stomach feel a bit better now, palpitations are lesser. There is still nausea and headaches but they are starting to get lesser and lesser now. I do hope I get over these symptoms soon. I don't have the cravings anymore because I got scared of having those terrible symptoms again. I am definitely not going back to that lifestyle anymore. I want to feel better, I want to feel fit and healthy again.

By anon39102 — On Jul 30, 2009

Hello everyone, has anyone experienced peeling of the lips i currently on week #5 and it seems as though my lips are starting to peel a little. i have looked it up online which says that it is completely normal but has anyone else experienced this as of yet?

By anon38919 — On Jul 29, 2009

I am on day 10 of no smoking, and day 5 of no nicotine (started with the gum). This is my second attempt at quitting, the first I quit for 6 days in May. I am so ready to be done but my body feels awful. I have awful stomach pains, gas, headaches, irritiability, inability to concentrate, and lack of sleep. *Does it get better*? I have done okay with the craving so far. I really believe in the power of prayer and have asked for the desire/obsession to smoke to be removed. For the most part it has, the desire anyway. The obsession is still there but I am sure it will pass in time. I look forward to when my day doesn't feel so miserable! Good luck to you all! Congratulations and guess what....you smell better!

By Star2009 — On Jul 24, 2009

Help for anyone who has a cough, chest congestion and/or breathlessness:

A natural Native American remedy. The name is Osha Root. It can be bought as a tincture or capsule.

Medicinal Properties & Uses: Osha Root has been used for generations for most every ailment. The roots, seed and essential oil of this plant are a bitter, camphoraceous warming herb that stimulates the circulation, kidneys and uterus. The root, being the most potent part of Osha, is the most widely used. To soothe sore throats and irritation of the gums, the root may be chewed raw. Boiling the root into a tea helps loosen phlegm and is an effective treatment for viral colds and flu. Osha Root is arguably the best American herb for lung and throat infections. It stimulates the macrophages or resident white blood cells of the lungs, numbs sore throats, bronchio-dilates the lungs to assist in expectoration, warms the lungs and helps one to breathe more deeply. Osha can be used as a preventative for those prone to sore throats and lung congestion or who get secondary infections from allergies. As Osha Root brings more blood into the lungs, it assists in dilation of the lungs when constricted. Therefore, it is helpful for emphysema, pneumonia, allergies, smokers cough, and athletically induced asthma. Osha Root is also antirheumatic, antispasmodic, diaphoretic, digestive, febrifuge, and stomachic. It is used internally in the treatment of eruptive fevers, digestive complaints, toothache, painful menstruation and retained placenta. It has also been used to treat tuberculosis and headaches. An infusion of the roots is used externally to treat body aches. Powdered osha root can be used to make a soothing cough syrup. It is more effective than Echinacea and Goldenseal when one is already acute and congested. It increases oxygen utilization and uptake into the body, which aids in motion and air sickness.

Good luck to everyone!

By anon38136 — On Jul 23, 2009

Hi i am currently on week #4 and it seems as though the longer, the harder. At the beginning for the first 4 days I was fine, now it seems as though it is really hitting me. Reading everyone's posts have really been helpful because it lets me know that I am not in this alone. Hang in there everyone!!

By Star2009 — On Jul 23, 2009

Hi Everyone! I'm glad to see so many people still hanging in there. My first post here is #149. I'm still smoke free. Most of my withdrawal symptoms are gone, but I'm still craving cigarettes. The worst times are when I'm almost finished a really good meal, I think of lighting up, like I still smoke, then reality hits me and I get depressed. Honestly, when this happens, I can actually taste the cigarette. I think that since I smoked for so long and enjoyed it so much, I'll probably be craving it for a long time. Sometimes, I think I will be able to smoke again, only a few cigs a day, then reality hits and I'm sure I could never smoke even one cig. again.

Hang in there everyone! If I can do it, anyone can do it! My prayers are with all of you!

By anon37493 — On Jul 20, 2009

It's been 11 weeks since I posted Post # 130. That makes me 28 weeks quit. It gets easier all the time, just hang in there. Good luck people!

By anon37471 — On Jul 20, 2009

Hi I love this site! This is my fifth attempt since May 2009, ten days no smoking. Withdrawals? Headaches, stomch cramps, constipation, body aches, nose runny, neck constantly feels like I slept on it wrong, aggitated, starving, blah, blah, blah. I enjoy not being a slave to smoking, talking with a client and wishing they shut up so I can smoke, having to suck four ciggs down within five minutes of waking up just to get going. I am 38 years old been smokig a pack a day for 24 years, I am a mother to five reasonably young kids and lung cancer has now touched my circle of people, and I want to be done. I am still suffereing cramps, and aches but its the wanting to be part of that takes me out every time. I have tried chantix, patches, ecigg, really the patch helps me. I slap one on before bed and feel like the edge is off when I wake up. Keep up the good work everyone.

By anon37127 — On Jul 17, 2009

Just passed the 4 week "considered safe zone thing". Funny, huh? Every day, at some point, I miss my 40-year old, non-judgmental light-up companion. The upside is every morning when I awake, I say: "I am no longer a slave" and it's the last sentence I utter before going to sleep at night. It's the in-between time that's challenging. But, guess what? We can do it! You can do it and if I can do it, anyone can! Yet, should you slip back for an instant, the brain remembers instantly the satisfaction you felt..body is so amazing and a curse at the same time:). Worst case: if you slip; so what! That's OK too. It doesn't make you any better or worse, any stronger or weaker. You are still and forever a spiritual being and can never be anything less than that anyway. (I only quit smoking because I personally felt enslaved and my breathing felt shallow.) With Love, Marsha

By anon36933 — On Jul 15, 2009

Hi, everybody! I was the ER patient on my first smoke-free day. It is my 9th week now. I can tell that the symptoms got better. My dizziness diminished greatly, my fatigue is still there but not as bad, the tingling is still going on. The headaches are not as bad too. I still have metallic taste in my mouth and have trouble concentrating. I am very anxious and angry. I do not sleep very good. But in general I feel better. I can tell that I will experience these symptoms for a while, but I am not scared anymore, thanks to this site. When I get really anxious, I pray. It helps me. I also try to stay away from the strong smells like perfume because it irritates me. I think everything irritates me right now. I pray it will go away soon. I know it will.I am not going to smoke ever!!!

By anon36617 — On Jul 13, 2009

I'm in week 3 of quitting cold turkey and I'm a wreck. Anxiety/panic attacks, shooting pains in my chest and rib cage and and tingling in my fingers and the more I worry and zone in on my symptoms, the worse they get. But I'm in it for the long haul.

We all need to hang in there!

By anon36444 — On Jul 12, 2009

I recently am a non smoker, I got to say that it has been a struggle, the urges and the cravings, but I have a special someone that has been there for me. when I'm around him I don't even think about cigarettes. he has a way that makes me not want to smoke- maybe its him kissing me. I love the way he kisses me, and when I was smoking we didn't really kiss passionately. So if I could give any advice, try to find that special someone, it could be your child, spouse, family friend....doesn't matter -- just stay positive and keep positive people around you, and you will succeed if you really want to quit.... For the past 8 days I have been fine, but I woke up the 9th morning and felt extremely sick, nausea, sore throat, coughing, sneezing and really bad pains in my stomach...I researched and found that I am having nicotine withdrawls....I'm still not smoking and even the thought of it disgusts me especially if I am going to have to go through this again... No thanks...I'm going to stay smoke free...Thanks to my special someone....Jennifer

By anon36006 — On Jul 09, 2009

im on week 9 and the anxiety attacks have gotten worse. i need help. it was easier during the first 8 weeks. now, i feel like my world is spinning everyday, and i feel nervous a lot and i feel like im going to pass out. is this normal? i've had my thyroid checked, but found out it was normal. my blood tests were good, and so was my heartbeat. but the dizzy spells, the lightheadedness is crazy. yup, i also have 2-3 anxiety attacks per day.

By anon35660 — On Jul 06, 2009

I am so grateful that I found this site. 5 days in - thought I had the flu but no fever, which was confusing (horribly sore throat, sore joints, dizzy, coughing) Now, I know what I am experiencing is normal withdrawal. As nasty as all I read here sounds, at least I know what I will face. Knowledge is power. Thanks to everyone. I *will* make it because of this site.

By anon35599 — On Jul 06, 2009

Hello, everyone. I quit June 2nd, 2009. I find myself gasping for air like a fish, but at least I'm not hacking when I breathe deeply. I am also tired a lot of the time and do a lot of yawning. I have postnasal drip all the time, too. I guess my old body is just trying to fix itself up and get the cilia working again. Not smoking is pretty neat, though. I'm saving money and not paying somebody to ruin my health!!

By marsha1 — On Jun 30, 2009

Remember that no subconscious-triggered craving lasts longer than 3 minutes (if you have the urge to smoke..set the timer or watch the clock). I love that old movie promo that said "Do easy". That stuck. Everything passes; it must by nature; nothing is static. Idiots we are if we resist change; yet we are living proof of ignorance still trying to resist the nature of itself. God..ain't we somethin!!. In Love and pure appreciation of/for the human experience. xo

By anon34881 — On Jun 30, 2009

Dear Marsha,

Want a wonderful article. I quit cold turkey on June 6th, 2009 after 20 years of smoking. I still mope a lot although I have gotten over the physical cravings fairly easily this time compared to my previous quit efforts. I was struggling to define how it happened until I read your post. That's just it, desire has to work with will. If you do not desire to not smoke again, will can only do so much.

Over the past week, I have been having this strange sense of emptiness, which I keep thinking can only be filled by smoking. For three weeks I fought the physical symptoms and now they are few and far between, but the psychological urge keeps returning. I'm able to reason with myself and say its just a psychological feeling but I'm worried I will lose the fight. I guess I will constantly have to reaffirm my "Desire" to stop smoking and hopefully all these years of memories of living every moment of my life (Both the joy and sorrow) will eventually start fading away and I can see life as a regular non-smoking human being does. Lets see I will keep fighting.

By marsha1 — On Jun 30, 2009

I quit, cold turkey, 12 days ago, after 40 years of non-stop 'flying'. I happened on this discussion group just today while searching for a link between quitting smoking and lullaby land, i.e. I didn't know it was possible to be so constantly sleepy! After reading all the intelligent & empathetic comments & shared experiences, I wanted to offer this, if it helps anyone at all.

Will power can't stand alone. The emotion of Desire must join Will. My consciousness finally received the message that my body was a slave to nicotine and, just like that, I quit.

Was it that quick? No, of course not..it was a process of mind preparation which started about 4 weeks before I quit. And that began with "I'd like to wake in the morning and be a non-smoker." No knocking myself down, just a sincere statement held seeing myself tobacco free. No pressure, no guilt, no self-loathing. Just a calm vision held in mind. I hadn't set a particular day to quit, it just came in the middle of the day on June 17.

This is the most important thing I would like to share. It is about the power of the mind. Had I read about all the painful symptoms one might experience in cessation, my ego would have kicked in and said 'girl..no..I don't think so..keep on smokin'..you don't need pain..' And just by the act of reading a painful story, the subconscious holds that to be a truth. Do you see what I'm getting at here? When I quit on that day, my mind had not built up apprehension/anxiety, but rather had accepted that this could (& should) be easy. When something no longer serves, it ceases to be a slave. Period.

So the beauty is my mental body anticipated no pain..it just got very sleepy. Dopamine, naturally, trying to assist my physical body. Very weirdly wonderful. There is no laboratory in the world as sophisticated as the human body. All we need do is understand it, not fight it.

Can we understand that nicotine is a legal narcotic? Some blame, some shame..it's just what it is and has been allowed to continue because of its tremendous profit to pharma/gov't/health-care industries. The bottom line is always with the individual, thus 'as within, so without'. When we no longer choose slavery, it ceases to exist..on every level. We have to lose victim consciousness.

It will be interesting when we learn how many tobacco companies are bedding NRTs. Look. 93% of NRT users relapse to smoking nicotine within 6 mos. Understanding the mental process..just one puff of nicotine, after quitting, triggers all memories & conditioning associated w/smoking and starts the process of re-establishing our full chemical dependency on nicotine. Tobacco companies know this. Listen & let us understand: quitting smoking cannot begin until the heart stops pumping nicotine into the brain. Period. Other words...there is no 'weaning'. We really must understand this. For me, I had to reach the point where I refused slavery, consciously. We think we have 'free will'. No. What we have is 'mass consciousness'..dumbed down. And it's worked for thousands of eons of years, very successfully. With Love & understanding the only thing in prison is the mind. Freedom is a thought away...always.

By anon34325 — On Jun 20, 2009

Hello, again! I am the one who ended up at the ER after quitting smoking because I passed out. I am on week 6 today and I am still sick. The truth is I was also diagnosed with mononucleosis last week when I went to the doctor to check my health. I was so tired and dizzy that I barely could drive. So, she requested some blood tests for me, and they came out positive for mono. So, I think that all these troubles i was having with quitting smoking just tripled because of mono.

I just noticed that my panic attacks lessened by week six. I am still very tired and weak, but I do not know if it is nicotine withdrawal or mono. Good luck, everybody!

By anon34293 — On Jun 20, 2009

Tomorrow is my 5 week anniversary since I quit. The dizziness is almost gone just the occasional spell but it goes away quickly. Stomach problems are gone, but the anxiety is horrible. I have at least 2-3 anxiety attacks a day. I'll be sitting there feeling just fine & all of a sudden my heart feels like it's fluttering and I start panicking and feeling like I'm going to die. Total fight or flight feeling; if I move around and breathe it gets better. The slightest amount of stress and it feels like my heart's trying to escape. I'm also experiencing depression, had a melt down yesterday. What's weird is when this happens the last thing on my mind is wanting a cigarette. I've had some moments where I miss it so much but the cravings are nothing compared to the anxiety. I'm glad the dizziness is gone but I really hope I calm down soon, I don't know how much more of this I can take!

Hanging in there. It helps to read all of these comments and know I'm not alone. I don't have anyone I can talk to about all of this so it helps we have our little support group going on here. Thank you all and we can do it.

By anon34177 — On Jun 18, 2009

i'm on my 7th week after i quit smoking. things are getting better. the headaches have lessened, dizziness occasionally occurs, but the chest pains are still there and breathing difficulty. i think i still have the panic attacks, and depression. i am trying to go out and have fun everyday to overcome depression. i know i can do this, we all can. my throat feels weird too, like itchy.

any suggestions to treat my shortness of breath? doctors said i'm okay, and i think it's the panic attacks and nervousness.

By Star2009 — On Jun 17, 2009

I started smoking when I was 14. I am now 60 and most of that time, I smoked from one to 3 packs a day. Some days, when I was very stressed, I smoked 4 packs!

Today, I have been smoke free for about a month and a half, which is nothing short of a miracle for me, because I enjoyed every cigarette I ever smoked and I quit cold turkey. About 2 months ago, I caught a virus from a family member, which settled in my chest and caused me to get breathless when I exerted myself. Then, I was getting over the virus and came down with bronchitis. Again, my breathing became labored and the cough made my chest and throat felt like it was on fire. My doctor gave me an antibiotic and ventolin to help me breath. This is when I quit smoking, but instead of my breathing getting better, it got so bad, I feared I wouldn't be able to catch my breath and started having panic attacks. I couldn't sleep, because when I laid down in my bed, I felt like I was going to suffocate. Fortunately, it was actually the panic attacks that was making it harder for me to breath. I had no idea about how bad nicotine withdrawal could be.

I've been through it all...heart palps, panic attacks, feeling like I could kill for a smoke, dizziness, can't concentrate, moodiness, anger...etc. and expect it to go on for a lot longer. But, I am very grateful that I actually feel like I am going to make it despite all the suffering. I will never smoke again and I want everyone who is going through the withdrawal symptoms, to know...*you can do it*! Whenever you think you won't make it, think of me. I smoked multiple packs a day for over 40 years and I am going to make it...so can you!

For those who are having a problem with breathing, here's a tea that really helps tremendously:

1 teas. fennel seeds

1 teas. skullcap leaves

1 teas. fenugreek seeds

Boil all herbs in 1 cup of water for one min. let steep till cool, strain out the herbs and drink the liquid. Do this 3 times a day for at least 3 days. You can drink this mixture forever if you like and people who have a severe breathing problem should use it longer, but it should help you to breath better in 3 days.

Another natural remedy to help quit smoking is niacin, a B vitamin. It has to be the niacin that causes flushing. The flushing caused by niacin can be very upsetting to some people, so please use with caution. It dilates the blood vessels, which makes the blood circulate better. This causes a very noticeable redness with heat and itching all over the body.

The therapeutic dose is 1 - 100 mg table of niacin every 3 to 4 hours or when the craving for a cigarette is very bad. If you haven't used niacin before, I suggest starting off with 1/4 of the 100 mg tablet (25mg)or less and gradually build up to the 100mg.

Good luck to everyone!

By anon34103 — On Jun 17, 2009

I am on day 5 after smoking for on and off for 30 years. I am using the patch and I believe it just being there has helped. I cannot believe the fatigue I have experienced during the day. I can take a nap and sleep like a log, but then I cannot sleep at night but because of the vivid dreams I know I was asleep.

Been trying to keep up with my workouts, but I am so exhausted I am fighting to get through them. I so want to succeed this time, I really enjoyed reading these posts from the long term smokers and realize, the road I have in front of me is going to be tough but it is up to me to determine my future destiny. Glad I am not alone on the withdrawal symptoms I feel. Lets all hang in there, I know we can all do it.

By anon33852 — On Jun 12, 2009

Hi,everybody! I read this discussion and I am so thankful that I found it. I am on my 4th week of nicotine withdrawal symptoms, and it's been hell. On the 1st day when I quit smoking, I started feeling really dizzy at home and decided to go to ER. While I was driving myself there, I started passing out. So, I stopped at the restaurant, and asked them to call 911 because I was in such a bad shape. Everything was spinning around, and I could not walk. It scared me so bad. Paramedics checked my blood pressure and it was 80/60 which is very low.

At the hospital they did not find anything wrong with me and I had a friend drive me home because I still was so sick. Next 2 weeks was a nightmare! I slept non-stop for first week, I was dizzy and could not get out of bed. I was so weak that I could not lift my arm or leg. I did not drive for the first 2 weeks because I could not see good and my vision was so blurry. I couldn't concentrate at all. I also had terrible anxiety. It feels like you dying almost every minute. When I went to sleep at night, I left the lights on, and I thought that I am going to die in my sleep for about 3 weeks. I was very paranoid and depressed. I also had tingling all over my body from the head to my toes. My face went numb and my head went numb on week 4.

My gate is funny to me. I walk like I am scared to fall. I am still very tired all the time. I will be on my fifth week tomorrow, and it has been a hard time for me. I feel unreal.

Thank God that I found this discussion or I would go completely crazy. I still feel crazy and sick but I know it is not in my head. It is all nicotine withdrawal. I will get back with you later.

God bless everybody that is fighting so hard.

By anon33737 — On Jun 11, 2009

It's been almost 72 hours since I quit smoking. I smoked from 12 to 18 and stopped until a year ago. I'm 28 and have been smoking for a year... some days I chain smoke, other days only a few. For the last 72 hours I've slept the majority of it. Every time I fall asleep I'm shocked at how long I sleep. I also feel depressed, which isn't common for me. Is this normal?

By anon33514 — On Jun 07, 2009

Reading everyone's comments was a huge relief. I quit using smokeless tobacco about 4-5 weeks ago. I went to the doctor the previous week and we discussed my very high blood pressure and the fact that I need to make some lifestyle changes. I didn't discuss with him that I was a dip user. I quit using and immediately started having heart palpitations. I had an EKG done as well to find out my heart was beating normally. Even now I am having palpitations and today I felt like I was having a heart attack. Since I have been to the doctor for high blood pressure, I thought I was on the verge of a stroke or heart attack. It then dawned on me that these problems may be due to the fact that I quit tobacco cold turkey.

I searched the internet and found this article. I am so relieved to find out a lot of people experienced the same thing. I am still going to discuss this with my doctor to make sure I will be OK. If you are trying to quit, good luck to you and hang on with the rest of us. Thanks.

By fionaapple — On Jun 03, 2009

i'm on day 37 cold turkey. since i quit, i experienced terrible dizziness, for like a week. after that, dry mouth for days, feeling dehydrated, daily headaches and heavy feeling in my brain, tingling muscles all over my body and neck pain.

as of today, i still have the lightheadedness and the daily headaches. the dizziness lessened, though there were still occasional dizzy spells. i also had constipation and stomach pains.

the headache and neck pain is still terrible, but atleast other symptoms lessened. i also try to exercise everyday and i drink lots of water everyday. i wish to stay calm through this whole process. i know i can do it. good luck to all of us!

By anon33174 — On Jun 02, 2009

I had one cigarette yesterday and 2 the day before that. Am I quitting? I don't know! I certainly have a lot of the "flu" symptoms described, which are stopping me from smoking... maybe I just have picked up a bug. I have smoked 5 per day for about 20 years. I have never wanted to give up before now and don't have a good reason to now. I just keep not wanting a cigarette, so haven't had one. And suffer more. It gets to the point where I think, should I have one, to see if it is the flu, or if I will then feel better...then I think no - carry on. Don't know if I'll smoke one today, but can't promise not to. Sleeping lots and throat very sore and can hardly eat or drink.

By anon33060 — On May 31, 2009

I'm at week 2 now. Still feeling dizzy, chest tightness, occasional heart palpitations and anxiety. The stomach problems are getting better. I'm only nauseous occasionally now instead of all the time. I think I'm not craving cigarettes but I think the symptoms are freaking me out so much I don't notice it's because I'm craving a cigarette. The depression is starting but I've always gone through that off and on so it's nothing new for me. I'm trying to eat right & started exercising last week. I can at least get through a workout without wheezing and feeling like my heart is going to explode. I know I need to be patient but I can't help but feel disappointed that I'm not feeling much better yet.

I keep re-reading the comments from people who were into it longer than I've been & are going through the same problems, helps me to realize that I am not going to die, it's just withdrawals & I will make it.

Thank you all for your comments it really does help to know I'm not alone.

By anon32737 — On May 26, 2009

I quit 2 days ago after 16 years of smoking between five cigs a day and over a pack a day. I had quit before for about one month, two years ago, but drank alcohol and went right back to it. This time around I am not drinking alcohol at all, quit that a few weeks back.

I have felt some withdrawal symptoms, a heavy wave of panic last night while I was asleep, some cravings for a cigarette, constant triggers as well as sore throat, cough, runny nose. All in all it is something I felt I had to do and now is the time before I get any older, I am now 30 and have been smoking more than half my life. I was getting bad heartburn for years, yellow teeth, feeling of constant withdrawal because I would vary between smoking over a pack a day to going two or three days smoking less than five cigs a day.

By anon32638 — On May 25, 2009

For anybody who's serious about their health and wants to quit, get an e-cig.. puff on that thing for a good two weeks then stop.. quitting will be a breeze.. I'm 5 days cold turkey from nicotine and I feel great.

By anon32397 — On May 20, 2009

I am on day 4 of my second attempt at quitting smoking. Started at 16, quit at 25 that lasted for 2 years,then started again..idiot!! for the last 4 years. The first time I quit the emotional withdrawals were the worst, anger, uncontrollable crying outbursts, irritability, and depression. This time my temper is pretty even, I'm only slightly irritable but can control it quickly and no crying...yet...but the anxiety, heart palpitations, dizziness, cold symptoms, and tingling in my fingers & toes are the worst. I'm thinking it's because I'm now 31 not 25.

I decided to quit this time because I have been having dizziness, anxiety & palpitations for a while and thought maybe the nicotine was causing it. After reading about withdrawal symptoms and that most people smoke more when they relapse than they did before, I wonder if I was having those problems because I kept myself down to 4-5 cigarettes a day this time as opposed to the half a pack I smoked before I quit the first time.

I think maybe I've been in an almost constant state of withdrawal for the past year. And as you can tell from this narrative I'm having a very hard time focusing. I'll be trying to do something and find myself just staring unable to focus & continue a thought.

I have a good feeling this time that it will stick. Good luck to everyone and for anyone who's a 2nd timer (or more) like me.. don't feel bad that it didn't work the first time. Some of us just have to learn the hard way. Once you quit *Don't start again!* We can do it!

By anon32179 — On May 17, 2009

I quit cold turkey 6 days ago and feel great. I followed what most internet sites suggested. I drank plenty of cranberry juice, cold water, etc. Although my sleep sucked for the first four days that went away at the end of the 4th day. My physical withdrawal symptoms have now gone and I'm still fighting the triggers and probably will be for months.

It's amazing how quick your body starts fixing itself. I'm no longer wheezing in the morning or at night, the shortness of breath is going away after walking up a flight of steps. I feel cold turkey actually is going to work for me this time because in the past with patches, etc. I was still giving my body the nicotine but this time it only took a short 3-4 day detox to rid it completely.

By brentley — On May 14, 2009

This is a follow up on my post a few months back. It has now been 10 weeks since I quit cold turkey. I am not wanting a smoke. I do find that my nerves are still sensitive and my chest still hurts every day. I find my head has almost quit spinning completely. My heart seems better. I still find myself gasping for a second here and there for air. Maybe it's nerves IDK.

I am so glad I quit now. I didn't think I could hold on, but I am making it and things are getting better and better every week.

Please don't lose hope and understand this is not easy but very well worth the hell to go through to quit.

By anon32009 — On May 14, 2009

wow! I'm lucky, because even though I started smoking at 16, am now 29, and have stopped at 19, started again at 21, then stopped at 25, then started again at 29, but have recently stopped again (on 2nd week now) I'm lucky enough not to have any of the extreme symptoms some others do! One way of making it a lot easier is to use those patches! But at 19 when i quit the first time I did go cold turkey.

By anon31871 — On May 12, 2009

This discussion is very helpful. I quit cold turkey last week after 18 years of smoking because I was tired of feeling terrible. Next thing you know I can't sleep because I feel like I'm having some kind of heart attack. After a few days of hit and miss tightness in my chest and thoughts of dying in my sleep I finally get checked out (ECG, Chest X-Ray,...) only to be told that everything would indicate that I exercise regularly??? Thank god I found this discussion, I thought I was dying, good thing is that it kept me from wanting to smoke to the point that I don't even have any cravings... Now I just hope it ends soon.

By anon31862 — On May 12, 2009

I'm on day 37 of this nightmare. I had used Copenhagen for the last 20 years. These posts have really helped in knowing I'm not going crazy. A few of my episodes are similar to those posted. I have been taking Wellbutrin for quite some time also.

The first week I experienced a decrease in appetite, increasing anxiety, heart ready to blow, couldn't sleep and then totally worn out and shakes. I could also see and feel changes in vascularity/BP. That was just the first week. I started losing weight by week two. I was also feeling "tingling" in my extremities and upper chest. The anxiety had me thinking terrible thoughts. If you find yourself sitting at the edge of your bed at 1AM ready to cry or blow up, don't worry, it's unfortunately part of this withdrawal we must endure.

I had actually thought something was wrong with me. I had an EKG, thyroid, and blood work done. Guess what, I'm healthy. That told me it was the nicotine.

I have since dropped my Wellbutrin to a lower dose. It was too much with the anxiety. I still have dizziness. My appetite is very slowly returning. I still feel my heart race at times. I have also quit working out since I stopped. I used to do cardio and lift every day. I am hoping to return to that soon. It still takes a while for me to fall asleep.

It is depressing to be in day 37 and still have these symptoms. I know that it is for the best though. I will never put that worm dirt in my mouth again for the simple fact that I don't *ever* want to repeat what I went through and still experience. I pray that it will continue to ease.

I will send another post when my symptoms have cleared. I have seen everything from days, weeks to months. It looks like I'm on the long term plan. Best wishes and/or prayers to all who have made this decision. It's an ugly experience but an even uglier disease.

By clv009 — On May 06, 2009

I just quit today. I wrote my reasons why list and am ready to commit to the quit. I think quitting smoking is harder than anything else out there, alcohol, heroine, crack. Even in AA they let you smoke because they don't want you to go crazy.

One thing that is helping so far is Australian Tea Sticks, big help. I know I have quit before, but this time feels different.

Good luck

By anon31253 — On May 02, 2009

I stopped cold turkey on the first day of the year. That makes me 17 weeks quit. It was really bad the first 12-13 weeks, everything from palpitations to tingling extremities and unbelievable fatigue. Had to get a check-up just to make sure my cardio system was all right! After the first 13 weeks-easy as pie. Just hang in there. Good luck to us all.

By anon31148 — On Apr 30, 2009

Today is day 3 of my nicotine recovery. Yesterday, I started to feel the shakes, it was unbearable. I couldn't even sleep. As a result, I am fatigued beyond belief. I keep asking if it's worth it. And I know it is. But how long do I suffer? The irony in all of this is that I chose to suffer when I lit up that cig for the first time. Our consequences are the result of our actions. I'm trying to stay strong. Noticed no weight gain as of yet. My mood is OK, it's just the shakes, and muscle spasms that are driving me nuts. I hope I can make it through another night.

By anon30460 — On Apr 19, 2009

The first three days were bad for me. I cried and felt as though I hated the whole world. The more I look back on it I don't know whether it was physical withdrawal symptoms or all in my head. Either way, it sucked. I was majorly depressed and experienced *a lot* of anxiety.

I'm day 21 into it as of tomorrow and everyday now it just gets easier. If you can get through the first 3 days I think you're good to go. It's all mental from there or atleast felt so in my experience.

I run 2 miles a day 5 days a week. This helps a lot.

By anon29780 — On Apr 08, 2009

Today I am going to try and quit cold turkey. I did it about 8 years ago when I found out I was pregnant, and I just remember having the worst migraine headache of my life. Well I am prepared for that again.

I want to do this for my children and my health. I have seen way too many people die of cancer. I don't want to be another statistic. I was also diagnosed with Fibromyalgia and have been doing physical therapy so maybe the exercise will help me to get by. I am also an avid coffee drinker and always have to have a cigarette with my coffee, however, I don't think I will be able to quit nicotine and caffeine at the same time. So I figure I will do this one at a time. LOL.

I am so glad that I found this site, your stories are all very inspirational and it makes me feel more confident that I can do this. *thank you all!!!*

By anon29696 — On Apr 07, 2009

I stopped smoking almost a month ago. 25 days to be exact. I stopped using patches. I am still on 14 mg patches.

My hat goes off to the ones who have quit cold turkey. I honestly could not have done it without help. I found a support group and just went with it. A couple of days without the patch during the first two weeks and I was miserable. I had this rage inside me that I never knew existed. I was like a bear. So, I know there is no way that I could have done it cold turkey.

So to all of you that have. Job well done. You should pat yourself on the back because you have went through a lot.

Yesterday, I did not put a patch on because of the itching, but I am so scared of smoking again that today I put my patch back on. Granted I did not have those anger feelings when I left it off. I still want to finish out my quit program. I no longer want to put a cigarette in my mouth but still crave nicotine. I am beating this addiction one day at a time. I have not had much will power in the past but have gained some with this quit and it has been worth it. I have used everything known to man to help with the cravings. Straws, sticks, gum, candy, chocolate, gum, you name it. But it is working for me. Good Luck to all you quitters, it is worth it.

By shamrock — On Mar 30, 2009

Brently, I think a big help for you would be to see a nutritionist and get on a workout program. The only way I got over my symptoms is with a lot of vitamins, working out and eating well.

By brentley — On Mar 28, 2009

I smoked for 8 years at a pack a day and so I quit and it's been 3 weeks since I have lit up. Here are some symptoms that I have been going through. My head hurts in many kinds of ways from headache to dizziness. My chest was very tight feeling. Many sharp pains run through my chest heart and sides of ribs. I have fear of almost everything. I wake up from naps with this cold hurt in my lungs and it stays with me throughout the day, but is strongest when waking up. I do not wish to smoke a cig, though, the smell of a smoker is so nasty now. But I have the worst feeling come over my body and want to get back to feeling normal.

If anyone can relate to these strong symptoms please respond to me. It will help me and you out to share the side effects of quitting.

By ruddogxl — On Mar 22, 2009

Withdrawal from anything is dependent on the individual. I have heard some people say use the patch, easy to quit. Well if it was easy for you, count your blessings.

I am now at day 22 of no longer using nicotine products. I smoked camel filters and used a can of copenhagen snuff a day. I have smoked, chewed, and been on the patch. I could have used nicotine in an IV.

For me quitting nicotine is the hardest thing. I just quit using Norco pain medication which is vicodin and acetaminophen. No big deal, I just stopped. Well if you read online about Norco Pain medication withdrawal, it can be like trying to get off heroin.

My point is that withdrawal is an individual thing and for some tobacco addiction can be the hardest of all things to quit.

By anon28624 — On Mar 19, 2009

Hi. I smoked a pack a day (at least) for 7 years. The first time I tried to quit, I did it cold turkey. Then went back to smoking and have tried the patch and the gum, but did not work. I have been debating going on Chantix for aboiut 6 months, but was concerned about one of the side effects I read as becoming more depressed. Since I already suffer from depression, this was a big decision to make. So I have been on Chantix now for 2 weeks today. I quit smoking on the 7th day.

*Now for the side effects.* Let me start off by saying that I do not want to stop taking Chantix as it is working; I'm not smoking nor do I want to or have any cravings whatsoever.

I first became very irritated and had more anxiety than usual, probably days 1-3 (of not smoking) at the worst where I would just go psycho mad on whoever happened to be around. Then I got sick; meaning I still don't even know if it is the flu or a nicotine withdrawal, but it feels like I have the flu. I have had to call into work for the past 3 days because I cannot move my body hurts so bad. I have had a headache, nausea, vomiting, constant chills, sweats, fever, aches and pains all over, can't sleep, can't eat, can't drink anything. Those symptoms have been going on for the past 4 days and I really need this to end. I don't want to go back to a cigarette or feel that I need one, I just want these withdrawals to go away. I cannot find a reliable timetable on when this stuff should go away.

I am so jealous of the people on here who have said that they have no side effects, because I have them all. I can guarantee after this horrific withdrawal experience, you couldn't pay me to smoke another cigarette. Good luck to everyone. You can do it!

By anon28411 — On Mar 16, 2009

I use the patch, it's easy. I'm 3 months clean. Start on 21mgs, do it for 6 weeks, then switch to 14 for 3 weeks (they say 2), and then to 7mg for 3 weeks (they say 2). It's hard when you go down a level, but less hard than cold turkey. You feel fidgety and anxious, but by that time you've not smoked for 6 weeks and it's not a real habit anymore. The patch is it, man.

By anon28359 — On Mar 15, 2009

Smoked a pack a day for 28 years, never tried to quit. Well it's been a week now and no cigs. The cravings are non-existent, but the withdrawals are killer. I didn't even know you got withdrawals from quitting. Go figure. Had cold like symptoms and took lots of nyquil. Yesterday, I was thinking great, I quit smoking, now I'll have a heartache, it felt like it. This site is great answered lots of my questions about the physical aspects and I know I'm not alone.

By anon28306 — On Mar 14, 2009

I am on day 14 of quitting cigarettes (I was smoking 20-25/day). OK, I did it in quite a major way: I also quit coffee, tea and all caffeinated drinks, as well as chocolate. Oh yes, I also stopped alcohol at the same time. How am I doing this? I started exercising from day 1. Now, Day 14, I jogged 45 minutes this morning. The worst days psychologically were days 10-13. On Day 13, I almost gave-up, but I stayed strong. I'm lucky because I'm taking time off work at the moment, so I have plenty of time for exercise and rest. The other very important thing to do is to eat extremely healthy, and drink a lot of water. Good luck! I'm still hanging in there!

By anon28275 — On Mar 13, 2009

I have read every single post on this site. Some of them are rather discouraging, while the majority of them have been extremely helpful. Just to know that you are not alone is a great feeling in & of itself.

I'm almost to my 48 hour mark without a cigarette. Cold Turkey. I was a pack a day smoker for 19 years. I didn't sleep at all last night, and that is the worst symptom I've had so far. I am having horrible cravings, extreme dizziness, irritability, my mouth and gums are absolutely killing me, and I generally just want to choke someone. Haha.

I do feel better now that I have stumbled across this forum. For those of us that are going through this, I wish nothing but the best. Peace and strength.

By anon27937 — On Mar 08, 2009

After 40 years of smoking, I am thrilled by the new electronic cigarette and e-juice. After dozens of attempts to quit in the past, I am switching to e-cigs and will work to reduce my nicotine input. They are awesome and I love some of the flavors.

By anon27756 — On Mar 05, 2009

2 weeks ago I used to smoke 20-30 cigs a day, I've stopped completely. grant it, it was difficult, but it wasn't too hard. but society and the public media has blown this topic extremely out of proportion making this less of a obstacle and more of something you'll never get over.

it is do-able you just have to put forth the effort and want to do it.

By anon27598 — On Mar 02, 2009

I'm 37 and smoked for 26 years. A little Allen Carr and some cold turkey took care of it. Read Allen Carr's "The Easy Way to Quit Smoking".

By shamrock — On Feb 25, 2009

I found that switching to all natural cigarettes, like American Spirits, prior to quitting helps the symptoms because you don't have to quit smoking and withdraw from the chemical additives, you withdraw from the additives, then quit and its much easier. Also don't do the drugs, they just mess you up.

By anon27098 — On Feb 23, 2009

I quit 2 weeks ago with Chantix. Been having nicotine withdrawal symptoms but the whole thing has been ridiculously easy. I seriously don't understand why people kill themselves with "cold turkey." Seems like they are choosing the horse and cart, and I am making use of modern technology and taking a car. Makes it a lot easier. Good luck cold turkeys but I give you all about a week before you cave. We've all done it so don't give up. :)

By anon27038 — On Feb 23, 2009

Well it has been 5 days and I have had only 4 cigs. Withdrawal symptoms in my particular case are absolutely horrible!

I naturally have anxiety and the withdrawal symptoms have given me panic attacks. However, the fact that i am having these attacks is enough for me to finally just *say no more* to these cigs. I can't keep them going on...

By anon26753 — On Feb 18, 2009

It has been 8 weeks for me. I quit cold turkey and the withdrawal was brutal. My question is---it seems like when you conquer one physical withdrawal symptom another one is right there to take it's place-----like right now I have a horrible metal taste in my mouth and frequent acid indigestion----will this to stop ???? When do the withdrawal symptoms stop altogether ?????

I won't go back because my good days seem to be slowly but surely out weighing the bad ones.

If someone could let me know if what I am feeling is part of the process it would sure relieve some unnecessary stress. Thanks and good luck to everyone.

By anon26720 — On Feb 18, 2009

I am a professional quitter. What I have learned is every time I relapse, I smoke *more*, and every time I re-quit, I am better at it, but the withdrawal is worse.

Good news for me on "this quit", my brain is co-operating. It's like magic...poof! I now understand how people quit...which usually makes me mad because I try so hard to quit. It's a brain related problem (for me) maybe all of us..who knows?

Good luck...next year we will all be at weight watchers, smellin' fine. lol

By anon26006 — On Feb 06, 2009

So i am 19 years old and i chose to quit smoking. Today is day 30 and i still feel like i am going crazy and should be checked into a psych home lol. I have every symptom you could possibly have for nicotine withdraw. The part i hate the most is how my heart feels, like its pounding hard, i have no concentration, and i forget what i'm doing and get really dizzy and almost pass out. I'm sure this is all in my mind like the doctors and everyone has told me, but this is really ridiculous.

I never knew quitting smoking was going to be this hard. I have the worst anxiety. I can't stand loud noises and a lot of movement drives me insane!

I just want all these symptoms to go away and I want my old happy self back! I really just need to be strong and I will get through this. I just can't wait till all these withdraws are gone. I will never go back to smoking again! Good luck and stay strong everyone!

By anon25757 — On Feb 03, 2009

Today is my 34th as a non-smoker. I used nicotine gum for the first 24 days, which helped break the psychological association between nicotine and smoking. This stage of quitting was actually pretty easy compared to stage 2, going cold turkey from the nicotine gum. It's now day 10 without nicotine for me. First 3 days were the worst - had close to zero energy or motivation, but still managed to feel irritated and ravenously hungry. The tiredness peaked on day 2, but is still a bit of a problem. Main withdrawal symptoms now are extreme difficulty concentrating, irritability, hungry all the time, and restlessness. I have started to notice some good things though: at times I feel genuinely relaxed for the first time in years, my skin and hair look a lot better, I can breathe easier, and have more energy. Have also taken up exercise - something that is a lot easier to stick at now I am not wheezing after the first few minutes. I am pretty much allowing myself to indulge in all the chocolate bars, coffee, junk food, and other "rewards" for the first 4 weeks nicotine free. I will be confident I have shaken this addiction by then, though will always be aware of potential for relapse - have quit twice before for long periods and gone back to the things. Stopping smoking is a major achievement - there isn't a drug out there that is more addictive.

By anon25699 — On Feb 02, 2009

I'm 37 years old. I've been smoking since I was 15. Quit once for 4 years and started when my first baby was so colicky. I've been a week without smoking. I'm going to make it stick this time. My husband and I are both quitting. I almost passed out at work the other day. I was so dizzy, didn't know that was a withdrawal symptom until coming on here. So thanks whoever posted that. I'm still fighting the dizziness off and on. I used nicorette the first three days but don't want to get hooked on that so I stopped. I've been nicotine free for 4 days now. I'm doing OK. Yes, I'd love a cigarette...but that's just a feeling I'm going to have to learn to overcome! Good luck, be strong, be healthy!

By anon25370 — On Jan 28, 2009

Hey guys, hang in there. Im 24, started smoking at 18 (really dumb!). I peaked at 22 years old at 3 whole packs a day. I got tired of not being able to breathe and made a commitment to quit, no matter how slowly and no matter how long. I started cutting down and today im smoking 7 cigs a day regularly. Every time I cut down I had these withdrawal symptoms which were bad for the first few days and totally subsided after 2 weeks. Im quitting soon, cold turkey and if it takes me until im 90 years old, I will give this crap up! Im going to roll over smokes like a soviet tank! I am scared as hell, but somehow, knowing what to expect from having done this before helps a lot.

By anon25194 — On Jan 25, 2009

The effects of withdrawal are very real beyond 48 hours. It is a medical fact that nicotine takes anywhere from 60-90 days to really get out of your system, and even then, I personally think it lingers beyond that in some form or another.

By ctosborne — On Jan 23, 2009

Call me crazy or what, and yesterday was hell day 5, so I decided to drink 2 bottles of wine, no I didn't smoke and yes I really wanted to, but i gotta say all those other symptoms went away short term of course until about 530 am which is almost now and i can't sleep. power to day 6

getting drunk doesn't solve all the problems but it sure helped for a period of time, if your going to have a headache make it a great headache.

By ctosborne — On Jan 22, 2009

day 5 agggghhhhhhh. thought i was really going crazy until i read this page, thank God for internet right now. 20 years 10 cigs or more a day, combined with a lot of fun and over usage.

I don't crave to smoke now but, God help me with this anxiety, nervousness chest pains, and so on......what does one do?

By anon24984 — On Jan 21, 2009

To #18108 I say AMEN! I too have turned to prayer to give me the strength I need to quit. "Faith is not believing that God can...Its knowing that He will." I pray for strength for us all. Amen.

By vicjo — On Jan 19, 2009

I just wanted to add another comment. I have been having tightness in my chest for about 2 weeks. Since i started to cut back. That by far has been the scariest withdrawal. I didn't not know that was a part of withdrawal. Reading the different comments has helped calm me down. I am not as nervous knowing that others are suffering from the same problems. This is the first evening for about 2 weeks that my chest doesn't feel so tight. Thanks for all of you who have shared your experiences.

By vicjo — On Jan 19, 2009

I have smoked for about fifteen years. 1 to 1.5 packs a day. I love to smoke. I need to quit. I have cut back to about 6 cigs. a day. I'm going to the doctor to see about quitting. I have had withdrawal just from cutting back. I'm scared about what it is going to be like when i quit all the way. I may try chantix. I think that's what it is called. I'm quitting for my kids and my health. I want to be smoke free. I hate liking it so much. I always feel guilty when i light up. I want to quit and not crave any cigs. I pray for us all smokeless souls in a smoke addicted body.

By anon24444 — On Jan 12, 2009

Someone mentioned about having pains in their finger joints. Actually I am on around week 4 or 5....I haven't been counting because I just don't want to think about quitting smoking. Any I didn't think it was related but I had pains in my fingers for about 7 to 10 days and Ive just realized that they are gone now. It started at around week 2 I guess. So maybe it is related. Judging by all of the other symptoms I am experiencing, I wouldnt be surprised. My one big question to everyone is.......Is there any time limit to when the physical symptoms stop? Actually I can deal with the emotional and psychological symptoms with yoga and a good boyfreind to talk to.....but the heart palpitations, the eternal hungriness, the headaches, the fatigue, the insomnia, the gas and constipation....When will it stop?? If Anyone has an idea, I would love to know. And well done to everyone, I never even thought that there would be symptoms like this. I did absolutely no research until I found this forum after 4 or 5 weeks, and I didn't even know that these were withdrawal symptoms. I was actually really worried that I was really sick and was afraid to go to the doctor in case he told me I had some life threatening disease! So thank you for sharing, at least now I know that I am normal

By anon24439 — On Jan 12, 2009

i have been smoking for 18 years, but only in the past 7 years everyday. I quit cold turkey a about a month ago purely because I had a bad chest and sinus infection and just couldn't smoke. So I decided to just not smoke again.

Good news is I have only had about 2 cravings in a month and I haven't given into temptation because now the smell of cigarettes turns me off. However I have become a complete recluse. I am usually a very sociable person. I don't particularly feel depressed, but I don't want to be around people. I have also quit alcohol, as I don't see the point in drinking if I can't smoke. I feel like I have become very boring, and I have gained quite a lot of weight very quickly.

Every second day I feel energized and every other day i feel exhausted. I almost fainted a few times and I have a cough. I have had a lot of sinus pain (my infection has seemed to have cleared though). Ive had headaches all day somedays. I have terrible gas.

Since today I have gone on a healthy diet too, in an effort to lose some weight. On the days that I have energy I have been walking briskly and I have noticed a difference when I climb stairs.

The worst and most worrying part for me though is that i have heart palpitations...all the time. Is this normal? Does anyone know? I find it hard to get to sleep too. Sometimes it is 4am, but i tend to sleep late in the morning (luckily I work evenings)

If anyone can relate to these symptoms I would be grateful. I was wondering how long it will last. This is actually my first time to ever quit smoking in 18 years! And right now I really feel like I will never smoke again...God willing

By anon24319 — On Jan 10, 2009

I am finishing up day six after deciding to make my New Years resolution to quit smoking. Decided to try cold turkey to see what would happen. The nausea at night, the weird dreams, feeling exhausted one minute and feeling completely energized the next. It's definitely not easy. But after only six days, I smell the disgusting stink of smokers and food is starting to taste better. It's hard to resist the cravings and I get them at work and in the car often. I'm trying to keep my head up and not give into the temptation. Non-smokers don't like kissing smokers...that kind of sucks too!!! Good luck to everyone and to me!

By anon24294 — On Jan 10, 2009

I'm on day 2 of attempt #3.

The first time I went cold turkey, and the withdrawals made me murderous.

Then I went through withdrawals every weekend for about a year and a half, only smoking at work.

Attempt #2 used the patch and allowed me to quit for 1 - 1.5 years.

So far the withdrawals have been very mild. I had some pretty bad cravings last night, but it really wasn't as awful as I remember it. I'm not half as tired as I thought I would be, and I'm not irritable at all. I don't know if I'm just used to the withdrawals now or what, but I feel great all things considered.

By anon23599 — On Dec 29, 2008

Use a e cig Its done wonders for me.

By anon23404 — On Dec 23, 2008

I quit chew 5 1/2 months ago cold turkey. Before that I had chewed for 16 years, one can a day. Today, I am still overcoming things. I still experience fatigue, noisy stomach gas, nausea, depression, and panic attacks. All this started right when I quit so I know its nicotine related. So for those of you that read some things about how you won't have nicotine withdrawals after a few weeks, realize that it's people that wrote those that never did nicotine.

No medication for me. People wonder why I don't use any, well because it makes me worse and I can't tell if I'm improving or if its just medication doing the job.

By anon23231 — On Dec 19, 2008

I am chewing tobacco from last 14 years. I feel that main problem is not the tobacco, but its physiological problem. I felt that by chewing tobacco, I will show my friends that I am something special from you guys.

Isn't this too childish? Ya it is but only before few days, I came to know that its childish act. Now having sever carving problems but hope I will get rid of them soon. God bless us all :)

By nibaini — On Dec 16, 2008

Well I was on day 2 till about twenty minutes ago, I caught myself though and only took 3 drags Which is bad but at least i caught myself. So we will see how it goes now. I have been trying to quit the last few months but I live with a smoker who smokes in the house!! any suggestions? this makes it so difficult I sealed off the bedroom and have a fan by the window and I did pretty good about keeping the smoke smell out but I can't hibernate in the room all the time, so help would be great.

By nicvic — On Dec 16, 2008

Hi, im on my second day of going cold turkey im experiencing cravings but heres a tip for people out there that are finding it hard. Drink plenty of green tea. This would be about the tenth time of me quitting but the first time of me drinking green tea and its not so bad it helps clean out the system. Which will help get rid of the nicotine in the system faster. For people who are finding it hard to sleep some chamomile tea might help it has me. It has sleeping agents in it. we can all do this.

By anon22894 — On Dec 12, 2008

Im now suffering from anxiety and my neck is killing me.. I also having palpitations and shortness of breath.. The worst is I feel so tired all day and very sleepy and being depressed with no particular reason.. Today is my 4th day of no cigar life.. It's very hard.. I thought there are no side effects in quitting I began going to the doctor to check my heart and anxiety condition.. Now I'm quite relieved from my anxiety.. But I still need to make sure that I'm not having cardiac problems nor Hypothyroidsm.. God bless us all.. And may we have a good and happy lifestyle after enduring this challenge..

By anon22699 — On Dec 08, 2008

I have been smoking for the past year now, on and off mostly. Began just 1 or 2 with some friends while walking to the nearest store. Now im around 5-7 a day which aint that bad considering some stories i have heard, Im very athletic and just want to quit before i get deeper. throughout this year i have quit a few times which i refer to as a "cycle", month in a month out i try. I believe when you quit cigarettes try smoking 1 or 2 of those little cigars, I know the experience is nothing like a cigarette but it helps a lot with the psychological effect of not smoking as well as provides you with a little bit of nicotine so you don't kill your self. after a week of this you will personally just quit using the cigars.

By tillykat — On Dec 04, 2008

I quit smoking cold turkey 7 wks ago,it was my 4th attempt. The only problems i have at the moment is being short of breath and chest tightness. I smoked for 20 years and was a heavy smoker something like 40 a day. I got so fed up with my chest probs that i have had a few e.c.g done and 2 chest x-rays,my anxiety levels were through the roof.

I am hoping the chest tightness will go soon, but it is a price to pay for smoking.

By anon22359 — On Dec 02, 2008

hi im 29 I've ben smoking for 15 years 1.5 packs a day and im on day 15 and nothings getting better for me my cravings are pretty much gone, but i shake all day dizziness, upset stomach, and my neck, back and jaw kill me when i wake up in the morning. I just never knew there would be as many symptoms that come with quitting smoking.

By anon21892 — On Nov 24, 2008

This is my 11th hour from last cig I had and I been smoking for 6 and half years and I cannot sleep at all ....I hate this my withdrawals are that bad though get the chills once in a while and I hope this all works out.

By anon21772 — On Nov 21, 2008

went in for heart valve surgery Oct. 15. Last cigarette Oct.5. Everything went smooth. Never even thought about smoking. Now six weeks later, With surgery behind me,starting to think about lighting up.I'm 62 years .old. Started smoking at 28 years old.Smoked for 10years. Quit for ten years.Smoked from 48Years old, to 62yrs old. I have six week no smoking behind me. Afraid i'm am going to blow this gift. Urge getting stronger every day.

By anon21597 — On Nov 18, 2008

I'm on day 10 of quitting after smoking 1 pack/day for 15 years. I'm using Chantix. It has really helped curb the withdrawal symptoms I got when I tried cold turkey. Be warned, the medicine will give you some wild dreams and can give you an upset tummy if you don't eat before you take it. Right now I'm experiencing 'smokers flu'... congested, tight chest, runny nose, etc.. Something else I've noticed that I never did before... smokers smell BAD! Made me realize that for 15 years, people were talking about how bad I smelled! :)

By anon21190 — On Nov 11, 2008

Being a smoker on and off for about 30 years, I am very pleased to announce that I did not just stop smoking...I have QUIT smoking. :) (Stopping implies the ability to restart...no way!!) This was the MOST difficult time I have had, and I have always quit cold turkey. Not sure if it is due to my habit being larger (1.5 pack a day) or me being older, or whatever...but the nicotine withdrawals are real and frightening and enough to make some go straight back to smoking. However, I just persevered and said to myself, "I never want to go through those sort of withdrawal symptoms ever again in my life!"

I am "only" on my 78th hour of being smoke free...and I know I still have a ways to go...but I can attest to this...I am not craving the cigarette at all (and I REALLY loved smoking!), but I am relearning to live and do things as a non smoker...those commercials are no joke!

I have experienced dry mouth, sore gums, sore throat, weird dreams, insomnia, restless sleep, fatigue, heightened tastes and smell, foul taste in mouth, and even some circulation issues which I think may be more from lack of sleep?! Anyway....Good luck to all!

By anon21181 — On Nov 11, 2008

so i got sick with bronchitis-so the doctor told me i need to stop for at least until i got better

oh my god- it's been the truest 4 days of hell

the first half day was OK and then everything-everything was irritating. it hasn't stopped-i feel so empty i keep eating chocolates worse than that as i was telling someone earlier--

it truly feels like i lost my best friend...that's what my cravings feel like--its really the saddest thing about it how empty it makes you feel like i had some great times with this "friend" and the only thing in the world that will make me feel better is if i "talk" to "him" again--horrible i really don't ever want to go through this withdrawal bs again.

i was in my psych class and the teacher told us about how she quit- and that was like 20 years ago and since smoking is like trained conditioning on your brains reward systems-- youll get craving throughout your lifetime its what they call a "spontaneous recovery"(reemergence of a conditioned response which has been previously extinguished) sucks for everyone and ME!! yaya

By anon21081 — On Nov 10, 2008

Hi, I quit smoking 13 weeks back. I was under impression that all the physical difficulties associated with nicotine withdrawal will be maximum 12 weeks. During this period i went through serious stomach problems like indigestion, constipation etc. Now the constipation problem is not going. sometimes i feel i aggravated my health by quitting smoking. can any one tell for how much time the withdrawal symptoms persist.

By anon20956 — On Nov 08, 2008

Hi everybody!!! Great to see the online support group. I'm on Day FOUR smoke free after 6 years of smoking a pack a day. This is my second attempt, both of which were cold turkey (first one lasted 54 glorious days).

Yes, the withdrawal symptoms then and now are a b****. But this time, they are more bearable, I believe, because I REALLY want to stop. See the first time I stopped was because I bought a brand new car (the first ever brand new car I buy) and I didn't want to smoke in it and stink it up like I did my rented car and older cars/parents cars. So technically I didn't want to quit.

Then I didn't want to quit because it was a part of my identity, like literally, I was the girl who chain smoked. That was who I was, and everybody from friends, to coworkers, to family to acquaintances knew they couldn't even joke about my smoking because I was so sensitive.

That all started to change about two weeks ago. I was sick, like really, really sick, fever, cough, sore throat, lost voice and not only did I insist on going on a road trip with friends, I also insisted on smoking. Two weeks later, the cough wasn't giving up and it got thicker. Worst of all was choking on my own cough and not being able to breath between coughs. That was VERY SCARY, add to that a few comments from close friends saying that I cough like a 60 year old, and I put my last cig out for good.

Must agree that the second day was by far the worst ever, don't know how i'll feel in the next few weeks, because I do know that is the real test.

Good luck to all of us, we know that all this is for our own good:)

By anon20199 — On Oct 27, 2008

Quitting smoking is helacious - quitting dipping is hell on earth. I have done both and as hard and painful as quitting smoking was, quitting dipping is 10 times as horrible.

By anon19872 — On Oct 21, 2008

This thread has been so helpful to me. 2 weeks now without a cigarette, after years and years of 30-40 a day. I have been through everything - tight chest, palpitations, cravings, sleepless nights, etc. etc. But I just know that I don't want to get on that treadmill again. And most of all, I know that I don't want to give any more of my money to those damn tobacco companies. To think that for years I would sooner buy cigarettes than food! I feel ashamed. I will ride this out. And I will do it with the rest of you. Please, please, don't give up. Lean on me....so long as I can lean on you. Deal?????

By anon19495 — On Oct 13, 2008

It's been nearly 12 hours and I'm finding it really hard to focus when reading.. For some reason my eyes tend to skip a few words or a sentence. I can tell you this.. I will have a smoke before the end of the day.

By anon19488 — On Oct 13, 2008

Pack a day for 23 years now. Been trying and failing to quit for years now. I've mostly tried the patch with limited success. This time around, I decided to do the unthinkable... cold turkey. A very strange thing is happening. It's been 48 hours so far and I haven't felt a single craving. Not one. It's actually kind of freaking me out. Don't get me wrong... I'm not complaining here, it's just completely unheard of. I'm trying to think of recent biological factors that may be playing a part. I wore a patch for a single day before deciding I didn't want to endure 2 months of slow agony. I'm taking Lexapro for depression and just raised my dose from 10 to 20mg two weeks ago. I tapered off my drinking two two drinks a day a before deciding to quit smoking (I was going a bit overboard and both are closely linked to my sense of identity). I do experience a physical "rush" from time to time, but if I keep my mood positive, I can actually enjoy the feeling. Here's to hoping I can continue to ride this one out. Whatever is happening; I wish you all such luck in your endeavors.

By anon18905 — On Oct 01, 2008

Okay here we go!!!! It's been 2 hours. I'm going to do this once and for all. Done. Over. No more. And I thank you all for motivating me to do so. From my heart to all. Stay wise, be fit, don't smoke.

By anon18795 — On Sep 29, 2008

I am on week 12 of quitting chewing tobacco cold turkey. Things have been difficult on and off up until last week when I caught a cold. Its been 6 days in a row now that I've had insomnia, depressed, anxiety and sick to stomach. I kept thinking that 12 weeks should be far enough out not to have these symptoms but apparently not. My Dr. said its not uncommon to experience anxiety this far down the road. All i can say is Get your SLEEP! If you can manage to sleep properly, you'll get through smoking or smokeless tobacco withdrawal.

By anon18498 — On Sep 24, 2008

For 18411 --- What's up with the teeth and gums aching? I have that too! Any idea what causes that? It would seem that teeth and gums should be healing. It's driving me nuts!

By anon18446 — On Sep 23, 2008

I haven't smoked now for 9 weeks. I am 43, smoked since I was 14 years old. I chew a lot of nicorettes and normal gum but it helps. My daughter who is 12 got caught smoking at school... my reason to stop!!! I miss them terribly but will stick with it as an example to my daughter and for better health myself.

By anon18411 — On Sep 22, 2008

Am I losing my mind? kind of feels that way its been 2 months since last cig, and about 7 weeks since i quit the 4mg lozenge. I smoked 1 1/2+ packs a day when I quit over the past 20 years. haven't really made any serious attempts at quitting in the past,can see why! Between a new found respect for people who detox from drug addictions, anxiety, racing heart, wanting to eat for no reason, smelling things you don't remember smelling before, teeth and gums aching waking up and looking at the alarm clock to realize its been a few minutes since you last looked and haven't slept, tired, fatigue and kind of spacey feeling. I'm sure I'm forgetting some but funny thing is still experiencing some of this 2 months later. All I can say is this is a strange feeling that I can't wait to go away, But will. Good Luck All!

By anon18108 — On Sep 15, 2008

Most of you probably don't want to hear this but I feel the need to share it. I smoked 1-2 packs a day for 30 years. Was diagnosed with emphysema a month ago --- I am 47. I had tried to quit more times than I can count over the years and couldn't do it. I tried everything. Patches, lozenges, zyban, celexa, nasal spray, herbs, hypnosis, acupuncture and gum. Nothing worked. I truly didn't think I could quit and was prepared to die the way I watched my dad die --- with emphysema. Then I prayed. I am not the best Christian in the world --- never have been --- but I asked God for help because I knew I couldn't quit on my own. And it worked. It has been two weeks. It's almost scary. I have had no unbearable symptoms of withdrawal at all. It truly feels like a miracle. The only thing I feel is exhausted. Completely exhausted and a little "out of sorts". No coughing, no headaches, no irritability, nothing. For what it's worth, I wanted to share this. I just keep praying and asking for strength. I was ready and I needed this miracle. I know how horrible withdrawal can be. I have experienced it many times. This time, it's different. This post is my way of thanking God.

By anon17878 — On Sep 09, 2008

to anon 267; that is total bull. You must not have smoked much for very long. I smoked off and on for about 25 years. I have been smoke free for about 7 days. I have had a cough, headaches, insomnia, joint pain, dizziness and irritability. I don't really crave a cigarette now but hate the side effects. I forgot to mention the gas and acid reflux. Right now I am starving.

By anon17414 — On Aug 28, 2008

I've kicked everything in the book. Nic is the hardest one, I can tell you that for a fact. Day 3, 5th attempt over the last 10 years. I've quit for a year plus before. I know people who started again after quitting for 14 years! You will always be a fiend, it just just easier over time. Haha...

By anon16833 — On Aug 16, 2008

im on day 7 of no smoking and I've started to feel worried, shortness of breath, insomnia and hunger. i was really worried at first before talking to a professional and looking it up online. i am able to say even with the discomfort now knowing that they are regular symptoms of quitting i am much more relaxed and ready for them. Good luck to everyone!

By anon16802 — On Aug 15, 2008

after 22 years of 2 packs a day, i decided to quit cold turkey. no patches, champix, chantix and gums. no nothing. today is day 5. no smoker's flu, but terrible dizziness and occasional light headedness kicked in from day 2. i also feel heart palpitations every now and then. i'm not sure if it's another withdrawal symptom. the cravings were and still rampant but so far i can still control it. how? by thinking that my blood is now nicotine free and by no means, i will let another mg of nicotine to enter my bloodstream. i keep myself busy when the urge comes.

after reading all the posts, i am convinced that more discomfort will come my way. i pray for all of us. Good luck to us all.

By anon16297 — On Aug 02, 2008

I am on day 8 of my quit. The withdrawal symptoms were horrible. The only symptom that I still seem to have is the shortness of breath. I just feel like I cannot get a full breath of air. Is this normal??

By anon16184 — On Jul 30, 2008

About a year ago I started smoking, then moved to chewing (Chewing an equivalent to 2 packs of cigarettes a day), although I still smoked a couple cigarettes a day with my friends. about a month or two ago I noticed a small pain in the lower right hand side of my left lung. It disappeared, and I continued on with my life. A couple weeks ago It came back. I was a little worried about lung cancer, but I continued smoking and chewing that week and weekend, planning to quit the next week... Well its day three of quitting with 4mg Lozenges, and I am feeling Dizziness, I feel hot, tired, can't really concentrate, and I go through periods of Irritability. good luck to you though, and has any body had those lung pains before?

By anon15930 — On Jul 25, 2008

Hello, I'm on my fourth day after only six months of smoking, but for some reason it seems like the coughing hit me the hardest. Is it because I smoked heavy menthol cigs? Well thankfully Im quiting now and never want to smoke a cig ever again after this damn coughing.

By anon15567 — On Jul 15, 2008

misery definitely loves company..... nine months into my abstinence and i haven't yet kicked the chocolate a day habit..its working out cheaper mind you.. tightness of the chest is going away slowly..had 3 rounds of antibiotics about 4 months ago.. with the heavy chest i went for a tuberculosis scan to make sure im NOT suffering from t.b, no coughing mind you. I have not picked up weight either. There is the odd second that i do crave the pull but usually it goes away with the next thought. As for the crabbiness/irritability, i have always been irritated by certain things so that has just continued.

By anon15355 — On Jul 09, 2008

It's been about a week for me. A few days ago I started having terrible flu like symptoms and chest pains. Also had a bad sore throat. Coincidentally I had a pulled muscle in my shoulder. I seriously started to think I had waited too late to quit after eight years. I thought it was cancer and the pain in my shoulder and arm was pancoasts syndrome. I'm doubting that to be the case now as the pain has stopped. I looked up lung cancer and got paranoid because apparently the symptoms of withdrawal are similar. I still have the chest pains and tingling all over my body. A question for others...does your chest pain consist of a slight burning/pinching sensation at the top of the chest?

By anon14802 — On Jun 24, 2008

8 days in, smoked for 10 years, horrible quitters flu, chills, shakes, coughing up blood-tinged mucus & having difficulty swallowing. Can't sleep well either. It'll get better, it has to.

By anon14574 — On Jun 19, 2008

Stephen again. I really suggest people go for runs, walks, pushups, sittups, pullups or some kind of physical activity. It really helps. Also the weight gain isn't a concern, actually its a motivator. I could use an extra 5 to 10 pounds.

By anon14573 — On Jun 19, 2008

Hey all my name is Stephen. Been about a pack a day smoker for around 6 years. Switched to mainly chew a year ago... but I still smoked a little. Then at the end of my final college semester (last may) I went off the wall and was smoking and chewing a lot. Now I haven't had a smoke in 3 days and a chew in 2. I'm using the gum 2mg from time to time.

This is pretty hard, but honestly its not as bad as I thought it would be. Finally, a few years ago I quit an opiate habit of 2 years. That was total hell. I've been clean off of opiates since then, but maybe that's why I feel this isn't as bad? Who knows.

By anon14484 — On Jun 17, 2008

I have really enjoyed reading all the comments, it was very supportive. I'm on day four of quitting chewing/dipping. I had used for almost 30 years, and had been doing it 24/7. I even used at night during sleep. The thought of quitting was too scary for most of these years. I didn't even consider it...I decided that I did not want to be a slave to anything ever again. I quit cold turkey and am still having huge cravings, and terrible fatigue, I could easily take a ten minute nap every two hours. I was starting to think I must have cancer or something, so I was relieved to see that the fatigue was a common symptom. I agree with the poster before me, I also have panic disorder and could see those symptoms in a lot of other posters, so look up panic attacks on the web and you will see how those very real physical symptoms are created and controlled in your head. Best wishes to all, Decide who you are a user/slave or free.

By anon14293 — On Jun 13, 2008

After reading some of these posts, I just though I could add my own $.02. The last time I tried quitting was about 10 months ago. I used Zyban, and after a 10 days tried to gold cold turkey. Zyban is a mild anti depressant, and is supposed to replace the dopamine fix that nicotine gives you. I also have been diagnosed with anxiety disorder … something I had under control until I tried to quit, big mistake.

When I tried to quit on cold turkey with the Zyban, my panic attacks came so often that I began smoking again after only 4 days. After reading some of the comments above, a lot of the symptoms tingly extremities, tight chest, feeling that you are going to “lose it” are all eerily familiar to panic disorder. If you are having these feelings due to withdrawal, it might be a panic attack, so don’t worry it's all in your head. Techniques that I learned to cope with my anxiety will work for you as well.

I was able to get my panic attacks under control using the following techniques.

1. 60 minutes of cardio, 4 times a week.

2. Yoga for 30 minuets a day

3. Breathing exercises that I performed several times a day.

4. Xanax when I needed it.

The next time I tried to quit, 6 months ago. I used the patch. The patch is great because it gives you the nicotine that your body is used to, but allows many of the other withdrawal symptoms to work their way out of your system before you take away the nicotine. For example, the post smoker cough, its your lungs clearing out all that garbage that has been festering in it for years but your smoking killed all the cilia that would have normally induced your coughing reflex to get it out. The dizziness is your blood O2 levels coming back up to normal and flooding your O2 starved brain, making you feel dizzy. These ancillary withdrawal symptoms are so much easier to deal with when you are not trying to face the biggie, no nicotine.

For me, combining the patch with my stress management techniques, flowed by xanax when needed has allowed me to be smoke free for 6 months. I don’t know how typical my experience is, but take it for what its worth.

Good luck and God bless.

By anon13742 — On Jun 03, 2008

Allen Carr's book is pretty powerful. It makes you realize that the feeling you have as a smoker when you're not smoking is very similar to the one you feel when you initially quit. Once I really understood that it really affected my ability to enjoy a smoke. I knew that the temporary feeling of relief it gave was simply a prelude to another longer bout of wanting. That cycle can be quite addictive (even without the physical aspect) but ultimately a stress in and of itself.

I've been lucky in that I got really sick a couple of weeks ago and simply couldn't smoke and so managed to get through the first couple of days not even feeling physical withdrawal symptoms since I had a fever of 102 and had more important things to worry about.

Now that it's a couple of weeks later I must admit I underestimated the longer term detox process that would be taking effect. I've coughed up some nasty stuff and in general have felt some serious fatigue. I'm not experiencing any traditional cravings probably because I see having a cigarette as adding to my problems; not resolving them. Despite my smoking, I worked out religiously and now haven't gone to the gym since I stopped smoking. I'm hoping that once the fatigue finally lifts I shall be able to take my physical regime to the next level.

Probably everyone's experience with nicotine and its withdrawal effects is different. As one another note, I'm surprised more people haven't discussed herbal cigarettes. If you go six months without a smoke and really feel like you need a smoke, why not just have a herbal cigarette? You'll completely avoid the worry of putting nicotine in your body and by the time you've finished the smoke the real nicotine craving (or psychological wish for one) will probably have subsided without the worry of feeling that nicotine drain from your body.

Good luck to one all!

By anon13731 — On Jun 03, 2008

this is my third smoke free day, and the nausea, irritability and fatigue is definitely kicking in.

I have a splitting headache, and i know this is only the beginning. I even thought of just having one smoke for relief but i stopped myself. Goes to show how far willpower goes.

And i'd like to add, i'm doing it without any help (i.e nicorette)

By anon12865 — On May 14, 2008

misery loves company -- thank you for all these posts, i'm on my second day cold turkey after 25 years on and off. I thought it would be a piece of cake because I *only* smoked 10 a day, I cut down to 5 before cold turkey and wow, i feel it. DIZZY! last night I couldn't sleep because my mind was racing, I woke up at 1:30 am thinking it was morning already. my head feels heavy, my cheeks tingling. Last night i got cramps in my feet. during dinner, i felt like i was going to just explode so I took the dog and we walked as fast as I could go until the feeling passed, I thought i was going to be good for the remainder of the night. this morning im dizzy with a headache, foggy brained, can't eat which is different from day one cause i pigged out on seeds and nuts and i even made a homemade cake last night to keep busy. I didn't smoke, tho' -- and you know what the biggest reason was? I made myself a little one month starchart like we had in 2nd grade and I bought some colored foil stars before I quit. I want to fill up my one month chart. Last night I talked myself into wanting a star more than a cigarette. it's pretty! I am so glad to read all the suffering and know i can get through it too. thank you!!

By anon12576 — On May 09, 2008

I smoked anything between 14 to 20 cigarettes a day for the last 8 years. Since I suffered from ADD, smoking really helped me with my concentration during work. On the downside, I was very prone to mouth ulcers and over the last year I has quite a few of them.Every time an ulcer showed up,I could think of was oral cancer.That's when I seriously decided to quit. it has been 3 weeks now since I quit cold turkey.I had every single withdrawal symptom in the book - smokers flu, headaches, irritability, lack of concentration, chest pain, hunger and the one which drove me up the wall was insomnia.It took me more than 10 days to get a continuous 4 hour stretch of sleep.The cravings have reduced drastically but every time I see someone smoking I have to clench my teeth to resist myself.Someone rightly said, there is nothing like an ex-smoker,only a smoker who refuses to smoke.

By anon12513 — On May 08, 2008

I just found out I am pregnant so quit cold turkey . . not sure if it is hormones or nicotine withdrawal but I am having heart palpitations and just want to smoke to see if they will go away. I can't sleep and seem to get really anxious when I lay down. Please give me some tips . . . I haven't seen anyone on here talk about palpitations . .

By annerg66 — On Apr 29, 2008

I am on day 35 of not smoking. This is 3rd attempt in the last 12 months, side effects are horrendous!!! Any suggestions to put me at ease!! I am suffering dizziness, extreme fatigue and chest pains. Sleep patterns are up the creek, enlighten me pls, I would like to start to feel normal again!!!