Good morning, I am cheating this morning and putting a post on , that I used last year. May find useful.

Nicotine withdrawal symptoms can lead quitters back to smoking

When smokers try to cut back or quit, the lack of nicotine leads to withdrawal symptoms. Withdrawal is both physical and mental. Physically, the body reacts to the absence of nicotine. Mentally, the smoker is faced with giving up a habit, which calls for a major change in behavior. Both the physical and mental factors must be addressed for the quitting process to work.

Those who have smoked regularly for a few weeks or longer will have withdrawal symptoms if they suddenly stop using tobacco or greatly reduce the amount they smoke. Symptoms usually start within a few hours of the last cigarette and peak about 2 to 3 days later when most of the nicotine and its by-products are out of the body.

Withdrawal symptoms can last for a few days to up to several weeks. They will get better every day that you stay smoke-free.

Withdrawal symptoms can include any of the following:

Dizziness (which may only last 1 to 2 days after quitting)


Feelings of frustration, impatience, and anger



Sleep disturbances, including having trouble falling asleep and staying asleep, and having bad dreams or even nightmares

Trouble concentrating

Restlessness or boredom



Increased appetite

Weight gain

Constipation and gas

Cough, dry mouth, sore throat, and nasal drip

Chest tightness

27 Replies

  • Good morning Jilly and everyone.

    Yukky, wet and windy one down south today. I know it's early but it looks like I might be in for my first really wet run this evening with the running group. Oooer!

    So glad I've got over all those symptoms listed above. Any remaining ones now are just age-related! ;-) :D :D

  • Good Morning JillyGirl, Andi and all looking in :D

    It's a blustery one here too but is quite warm in the office, we even have the window open :-/

    That's a great opening JillyGirl, I don't remember seeing it before though. I think it's really important and useful for folks to understand that if any of the above is happening to them, that it is all part of the recovery process. :-)

    Andi, I'm sure any age related things going on for you are getting confused within themselves as you tend to run round like a spring chicken! :D :D

    I'm just off into a meeting now but will be back on in a bit :-)

  • Afternoon :-)

    I have just been reading through last nights posts and noticed that Andi had asked about how you go about measuring lung capacity... Eye will be popping up a post about this pretty soon ;-)

    I hope you're all busy doing the things you enjoy doing, if not - I hope you are all busy doing the things that you don't like to doing so that you can enjoy some free time once it's done! :-/ :D

  • I've been stopped for nine months now. I still suffer on a daily basis from:

    The daily tapping on the shoulder of nicotine withdrawal which gets stronger if I ignore it.


    Feelings of frustration, impatience, and anger



    Trouble concentrating

    Restlessness or boredom

    Noticeably increased heart rate when using e-cig with 24mg liquid. Anything less than 24mg doesn't work.

    I'd say that for me NRT doesn't work. If anything I am now even more addicted to nicotine than I ever was when I smoked. I could get by on about 12 cigs a day, according to the bloke in the e-cig shop 24mg liquid is usually used by those who smoke 60 a day :o

    Not that anyone who has never smoked is ever likely to be reading this but my advice to young people still at school who haven't tried smoking but are thinking about it is DON'T DO IT. It is a serious addiction that will make your life a complete and utter misery one way or another one fine day. You may be 14 years old now, 50 odd may seem a life time away and you may think you don't really care what you'll be doing then but one day you'll wake up deciding that you don't want to smoke any more and that is when it bites you back with very big teeth. Think on kids.

  • Hi Sinfree I agree 100% Dont start. Kids today know better, where in my day it was the in thing to smoke. Wish I had known then.

  • Hi Sin, we're just going to have to try and find your "light bulb" moment for you. I think you've got to try and do something with your brain - don't know what. :o :( Maybe it'll just take time for it to just gently drift away without you realising it and I don't think that will happen before next year now. You managed it before for 3 years (wasn't it?) so maybe it's just a lot harder this time. I only knew that I could only do it once so that would be that. I think it got much easier after the first year for me and I didn't have all the family distractions that you have. You'll get there in the end - NOPE! Hugs, Andi xxx :)

  • Hya andi. I need the little receptor things cutting out of my brain I think. This is the longest I've ever stopped smoking, the other two times I only lasted 3 months. Maybe you're getting mixed up with my last quit attempt which was about 3 years ago. It lasted September to December if my memory serves me correct.

  • Hello Emjay or Eye, DavisJonathan on questions needs your expert help. :)

  • i Jilly, I think it's useful to periodically repost stuff because youv'e done loads of research and it's handy and informative if you've just given up. Sinfree, you poor thing you sound so fed up and struggling even though you have done 9 fantastic months. Maybe Emjay and Eye can help you.

    I would be really interested in finding out how to measure lung capacity???

  • Aww thanks Friezfriend, I think I'm same as you, lots of pressures and demands from family. Any tips on thinking positive? Not so much being positive about not smoking but just coping with what life throws at you and just getting on with it, I tend to let it all get me down too much.

  • I got a peak flow meter which measures my lung capacity. it goes up to 800 The nurse told me an average is 400 mine is just over 200 .considering I only have 1 lung. whether thats similar to capacity I dont know.

  • Hi Jillygirl,

    FEV1 is the maximal amount of air you can forcefully exhale in one second. It is then converted to a percentage of normal. For example, your FEV1 may be 80% of predicted based on your height, weight, and race. FEV1 is a marker for the degree of obstruction in the airways.

    Lung volume is the maximum amount of air the lungs can hold and that is made up of a number of different volumes, remember, you never totally exhale all the air, there is always some left. I will have a scout around and try and put on a graph which shows all the different volumes.

  • Hey Sin, you've certainly said it how it is! It would be great if we could have a little sneak preview of our future... Ooooh having said that, would it? Smoking is like playing Russian Roulette.

    With regards to your own circumstances and where you are now in terms of your own stop smoking journey, I think it might be worth taking a fresh look at everything. This includes your choice of therapies and how you use them. I also think it might be worth getting you started from the beginning of quitting, but from an NRT point of view rather than cigarettes. Maybe even planning a way forward, thinking about how to do it and even setting and eventual 'quit date' of around 8-12 weeks away. What do you think?

    I'm just leaving the office now but will check in a bit later :-)

  • Hi EmJay, yes I could really use some help :) Can't carry on like this, I've just had 3 lozenges, 1 after another interspersed with an e-cig. I would love to just be free of all of it now. I don't know what I could use though. Can't use chewing gum anymore because of my teeth. Oh, I went to the dentist, it was a Locum and he was really nice, didn't even do a scale :) Can't use patches as they cause quite a bad skin reaction as do plasters. A quit date of 8-12 weeks away seems too long though. Christmas isn't a problem. It will probably be one of the easiest Christmases for quite a long time. Am not going on any Christmas Do's because they're always a big disappointment and I already decided that last year when I was still smoking, so I can get through Christmas OK. Keep wondering if to go to the Doctors but at the end of the day what can they really do? Anti depressants? But am not really depressed, more frustrated than anything.

  • Good evening all & especially Sinfree

    Sinfree - you have been a great help to me and I am sure many many others on this site.

    Can I just make one very very simple suggestion "You are what you think you are".

    A few weeks ago I was down and I got myself out of it with your help & others but the most important thing I did was keep saying "I feel good" & I acted positive (even though I wasn't!!) and guess what:

    I became positive again.

    If necessary trick yourself into believing you are HAPPY & POSITIVE. Try it, send a post saying how GREAT you feel !!!!!!

    Best wishes



  • Thanks Jonathan. Umm I cleaned the bathroom this afternoon? Believe me that is some achievement in this last few weeks of being on demand like a tap. It's so difficult to get up in a morning and tell myself I'm happy when I'm just not. But why am I not happy, y'know I don't think I even know anymore, so you may have a point there. I tell myself everyday that life is just rubbish, maybe that's why it is.

  • Hi everyone. Aww, if there is one thing for certain this is the best site to come to when you're trying to quit smoking. Such lovely supportive people are always there with a shoulder to cry on. I think one of the reasons I never give anyone else any encouragement is because like Andi says I just haven't ever had that light bulb moment. I feel like I would just be encouraging people to make themselves as miserable as me :D

    Well I just wrote loads and loads on here but I've deleted it all now cos you don't want to know all my troubles. But reading it all, Andi hit the nail on the head when she mentioned family distractions. It's stress and frustration that causes me to look for a bit of solace in a nicotine fix. A bit like the alcoholic looking for answers in the bottom of a bottle. So I need ways to cope with stress, disappointment and annoyance without turning to nicotine because probably like everyone else on here, that's what I've always done. It doesn't really help anyway, in fact it probably just adds to the frustration because it doesn't solve anything.

  • Hi there Sinfree, Right Emjay or someone once said this. Go to the bathroom look in the mirror and spend 5 minutes pulling faces at yourself. each time, say i will not laugh. Bet you do though. everytime you pass a mirror or see your reflection try pulling a face and think to yourself i wont even smile. try it , it does work. :) I would do it but probably crack the mirror. :D


  • :) Ok Jilly, next time I go to get a lozenge I will nip upstairs first and try pulling some faces in the mirror and see if I can delay it for a while :)

  • Hi ya Sinfree :)

    Hmmm, its sounds like your on a bit of a downer tonight eh :o

    Ok firstly, you have quit smoking :) but you say you are still getting the nicotine from the NRT !! BUT and a big BUT, you arnt getting all those hirrid chemicals that fags have in them :)

    Secondly, you seam to get stressed about anything rite :o like Jonathan has said, erm, you have to look on the brighter side of life :) for instance, the weather !! you dont like rain and cold !! I dont think many people doo :o so you aint on your own there gal ! BUT, just think of it this way, without rain, where would we be ?? and it smells lovely and fresh :) just fill your lungs with the air :) when its cold, it gives you chance to get them lovely warm jumpers out :) and wrap up like a bug in a rug :o When you get home, you can snuggle up in front of the fire, with your feet up, just lurvleyyyy gal :)

    So you see, its not all bad is it :o just try to change the way you look at things, 1, by 1, try to look on the brighter side of things, the funnier side of things, the nicer side of things, the happier side of things eh :)

    You can do this Sinfree, just a bit at a time, thats all it takes, just a bit at a time :)

    Sinfree, I would liked to have read your deleted posts, if you can think of them, then PM them to me eh :)

    Sorry for going on eh :o

  • Mmmm, its not happening :( It's been raining for days. I have my warm jumpers on throughout most of the year. Mind you, it is warm tonight, no heating on, no fire on, just me and me jumpers :) Jilly did make me think of music with her youtube vid. (I don't like that song .......but......it made me think of Ian Drury - reasons to be cheerful so I looked on youtube, ....um don't like that song either. haha, never mind, found some Deep House instead and that's nice and relaxing.

  • Signing off now. Sinfree dont forget pull those faces and do as Pete says too. We are all with you. Tomorrow is a fresh new day lets make it a wonderful Wednesday, not a mid week crisis. Sweet dreams everyone stay strong and happy. Night night. xx :)

  • Nite nite Jillygirl, looks like a just missed ya gal :( Hey, a loved your opening :) :) just ace gal :) I hope you enjoyed your night out Jilly and had a good time :) speak soon, and take care, and I hope you have a strong and happy nights sleep too :) xxxx

  • Night Jilly, thanks, sleep well and sweet dreams.

  • Hi Pete, worth turning on ITV 4 now, a documentary about James Cracknell, now there's a man who NEVER gives up.

  • Am going now. Have overdosed again on nicotine, feel as sick as a chip now bleugh........:( night night.

You may also like...