Almost 3 weeks but still suffering

It is almost 3 weeks for me but i'm still feeling the mental side of it. since giving up smoking it has effected my sleep. i get tired and go to bed early but keep getting up throughout the night. Also since stopping i have noticed it has effected my libido. i'm not sure if this is due to stress of the insomnia or some other side effect, like depression, anxiety, etc from stopping. anyway it doesn't help when you're in a new relationship lol.. has anyone else had similar problems and if so, how long does it last for? i'm guessing it's from the insomnia as i haven't had a good nights sleep in almost 3 weeks.

11 Replies

  • PS.. i also i can't help thinking if i passive smoking effects your withdrawal? i might be walking behind someone and get a mouth full of someones second hand smoke which i find annoying or surrounded by smokers. i was wondering if receiving nicotine like this was enough to make you relapse?

  • Thanks.. Ye it's the sleep most of all which i guess is having a knock on effect with the rest. i didn't think it would last as this. i just feel drained all the time.

  • Hi Nickone, well done on your quit.

    Most of us suffer from sleep problems at the start of a quit so you are not alone there by any means. I had problems on quits when using patches. I found taking them off before I went to bed helped with that. Last time I tried to quit I was just using lozenges. personally I had the worst and longest sleep issues then tham I had before :eek:

    We are all different and will suffer to lesser or greater degrees. If you are useing patches try taking it off before you go to bed. Whichever way you are quitting just remember your body is going through such a change not being bombarded with all thoses chemicals etc. It is going to take a while for your body to adjust to just being 'normal'. Things will settle down.

    Change your bed time routine if you can, make it as relaxing and as peaceful as you can. Make a special time just for you (or for you and your new partner :D) so bed time is a good experience and not something to be dreaded as you are just worrying or thinking you won't sleep. Thats enough in itself to stop you sleeping :rolleyes:

    This will pass and at the end of the day worth riding through in your fight to be a healthy non smoker :D

    Gaynor x

  • Thanks Gaynor. I'm not using anything to stop apart from will power alone. I'm over the need to smoke and if i do have the slight feeling to smoke it's over in a couple of seconds.. i just find over the last few weeks i can't sleep. after a few hours sleep i start waking up. i guess this is normal as i've had nicotine since a i was teenager. i tried the nicorette microtabs before and although i stopped smoking i was still addicted to nicotine. this caused me to start smoking again. so this time i decided just to stop and deal with what ever it hits me with..

  • I've just been reading about dopamine levels when us smokers stop which effects are mental state most. it can take several months to over a year before our reward centres in our brains started working again. when we start smoking they start to shut down to balance the flow of dopamine. this becomes dependant on nicotine to function properly. dopamine is the core of your sex drive. hopefully my dopamine levels will return soon lol.. this is the first thing i notice after i got over the first confusing week of my withdrawal. my libido vanished from being strong to nothing. I have to say it's very worrying lol. Anyway I thought i would share this incase anyone else is effected by a drop in their dopamine levels.

  • I've just been reading about dopamine levels when us smokers stop which effects are mental state most. it can take several months to over a year before our reward centres in our brains started working again.

    Nick - you're in the right area mate, but I don't think it's as bad as you think it is.

    Nicotine takes over receptors in your brain that reward you (with dopamine) for things you REALLY need to do like eat and drink. You then "up-regulate" and produce more receptors to compensate. Which in turn are again taken over by a need for nicotine. When you stop smoking they are starved of nicotine and will accept ANY stimulant (caffine is one big one). That is why you get a proper buzz from a Coffee that would have perviously gone unoticed when you quit.

    Once you stop with the nicotine you will gradually "down regulate" and return to normal levels of receptors. What I've read suggests this can happen in as little as three weeks, not the months and months you think!

    Try this as a good starting place:

    I'm absolutely convinced that this is why week 3 is such a struggle - your brain is begining to return to "normal" (which feels abnormal after years of smoking - if you know what I mean!).

    Good luck and stick with it.

  • OK - sorry for double posting but found the bit I was looking for in that link!

    The amount of nicotine remaining in the bloodstream is cut by half every two hours. The new ex-user experiences peak withdrawal and becomes 100% nicotine-free within 72 hours of ending all use. Extraction complete, healing can now begin. While receptor sensitivities are quickly restored, down-regulation of the number of receptors to levels seen in non-smokers may take up to 21 days. But after two to three weeks the ex-user's dependency is no longer doing the talking.

  • Nickone

    I'm on day 13 and I've found the last few days tougher than the first.

    I've also struggled with disrupted sleep, no problem getting off but find myself wide awake at 4am.

    Slightly reassured by Munters comments becuase I entered my quit thinking that it would be tough for a few days and then get easier, and I found it exactly the reverse.

    Good luck

  • Hi - I'm on day 14 and have been doing a little bit better every day. That said, i woke up in the middle of the night and didn't go back to sleep for about 2 hours. Fortunately it was not a work night, but i can only put it down to a symptom of quitting. I have no problem getting to sleep but then i'm awake. the dreams are still very vivid and i know i should take the patch off but i am trying to breeze through the mornings without a crave. Maybe for the next batch i will switch to the 16 hrs.

    Anyway, we're about at the same stage and i sympathise with the sleep thing. Only thing i can suggest is to be kind to yourself. We are both doing something truly rewarding for our bodies and although it is difficult, it will be worth it in the end. I just bought myself a load of stuff out of the avon catalogue - maybe not your thing (!) but i figured, i've got to week 3 nearly, and saved some cash so why not spend it on myself :)

    good luck - i am sure it HAS to get easier!!

  • Good luck to you MrsCP, even if I don't share your interest in the Avon catalogue !

    I've read that it's important to reward yourself, sounds a bit 'dog' like but I did hear that treating yourself is a reminder and incentive for staying off the smokes.

    Although I would much prefer to be rewarded with a decent (undisturbed) nights sleep, I just treated myself to a Nandos bag of hot wings !

    All the best

  • 'Wonder what the body does at that time to make it such a common factor'

    haha Karri, the mind boggles.....

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