Thursday, July 26, 2007

10 quit smoking symptoms explained

There are many different quit smoking symptoms that appear in smokers who are trying to quit. The range of symptoms is quite wide but luckily, most smokers will not suffer all of the symptoms, only one or two. Nevertheless, some of the symptoms can be quite uncomfortable and can motivate smokers to start up and abandon quitting.

In alphabetical order, the most common quit smoking symptoms are:

Quit smoking symptom #1: Anger: When you quit smoking, your brain chemistry isn't able to work normally because you haven't any nicotine in your system. As a result, smokers who have been off the smokes for a day or too can get a bit cranky. They tend to be pretty unpleasant company and are liable to fly off the handle pretty easily.

Quit smoking symptom #2: Bad Breath or halitosis: This is one of the more anti-social of quit smoking symptoms. Many people recommend chewing gum as this not only gives your mouth something to do but also covers up the bad odour. What most smokers don't realise is that they had bad breath anyway. It is only because they quit smoking that they actually came to notice it!

Quit smoking symptom #3: Constipation: It is not known specifically why, but many smokers complain of constipation when they quit smoking. The intestinal tract tends to slow down but it is normally only temporary. The only recommended remedies are to drink plenty of water and eat plenty of high fibre foods such as wholemeal and fruits.

Quit smoking symptom #4: Cough: When you quit smoking, the lungs finally get a moment to start cleaning themselves the way they are supposed to. This process doesn't work normally when smoking every hour or so. The body is simply expelling the mucus that has accumulated over the years. This wet cough should only last a week or two and it is your body naturally cleaning itself from the inside.

Quit smoking symptom #5: Cravings: When you quit smoking, you stop taking in a regular supply of nicotine. After only 3 days there is none left in your body. As such, because your brain is so used to nicotine it 'wonders' where it is and asks for more by giving you cravings to smoke. Your best course of action is to distract yourself for a while. The average craving only lasts a minute or two and they become fewer and farther between over time.

Quit smoking symptom #6: Dizziness: When you quit smoking, your body starts fixing the red blood cells that have been handicapped with carbon monoxide. After a couple of days, the 15% of a smoker's blood that was dysfunctional becomes proper working blood again. The dizziness is a side effect of the extra oxygen your blood is delivering to your brain!

Quit smoking symptom #7: Headaches: Your body has been used to nicotine within the system whilst you were a smoker. Now that the nicotine has subsided, your brain chemistry is trying to reset itself. Sometimes this manifests in headaches. To deal with this, your best bet is to avoid caffeinated drinks such as coffee or cola and drink plenty of water. Take some painkillers when required.

Quit smoking symptom #8: Hunger: Craving for cigarettes can be confused with hunger. You have been used to having a cigarette (or something) in your mouth about once every hour for the last few years. That is now gone. Try sucking a straw, eating low-calorie raw vegetables or chewing gum. Don't turn to chocolate or potato chips - you will get fat!

Quit smoking symptom #9: Insomnia: Because the nicotine your brain was used to is no longer there, the brain isn't working the way it is used to. As a result, it may keep you in a bit of a nervous panic that stops you being able to sleep. Have a hot bath and a hot drink and see if you can't nod off like normal.

Quit smoking symptom #10: Sore throat: Your body has been used to secreting plenty of mucus in your airways whilst you were a smoker to deal with the irritation of the smoke. When you quit, it stops producing this mucus and leaves you with a dry throat that becomes sore. Drink plenty of water to try and alleviate the symptoms. If they get really bad, try an over-the-counter anaesthetic spray.

All of these quit smoking symptoms will conspire against you. They will irritate and annoy you when you try to quit smoking. But remember, they are just symptoms and they will all pass in time. As irritating and annoying as they all are, none of them are as tedious as an early death from cigarettes!

Whatever you do when you are trying to quit smoking, my advice is to never stop trying to quit.

Pete Howells has written the EasyQuit System that will help any smoker quit tobacco. He also blogs quit smoking advice at Visit to find out more about his incredible process for quitting smoking that boasts 96% customer satisfaction.