Quitting Smoking Gets Easier. Truly it Does!

Light at end of tunnel when quitting smoking.Quitting smoking and healing from addiction is a long term process. One that takes many, many months. Even though the chemical dependency itself only takes several weeks to breakdown, the more advanced, neurological damage caused by addiction takes a lot longer to recover from.

By neurological damage, I am referring to the immense number of neural pathways and connections that link smoking and the intake of nicotine to behavioural, emotional and environmental cues.

The question, “do the cravings EVER stop?” is often asked on many quit smoking forums and support pages.

It is not unusual to see medium term quitters metaphorically, “lose the plot,” at finding themselves still battling through a wall of cravings several months into their quit. The question, “do the cravings EVER stop?” is often asked on many quit smoking forums and support pages.

So, do they? If you have quit smoking and ever find yourself asking this very question, I suggest you pause and reflect over your own quit and how far you have come.

Has the experience progressively gotten better? Are your cravings as frequent, intense or long lasting as they were in the early weeks and months?

Have you noticed you have spent less time thinking about your quit this month than you did last month or the month before?

Unless you are EXTREMELY pessimistic by nature, I am confident you will find it has gotten better, and over time, significantly better. The plasticity of your brain ensures it.

In time, the most you will be left with is a shadow of a crave. A thought that usually disappears by the time you acknowledge it was there in the first place.

So, given this trend; can you not see the healing process working? Can you not trust and accept the healing process will continue to work until you are healed? Can you not trust, that one day, you WILL stop experiencing these walls of craving and be free to get on with the rest of your life in comfort?

Every crave is an opportunity for the brain to weaken and metabolise another connection. In time, the most you will be left with is a shadow of a crave, a thought that usually disappears by the time you acknowledge it was there in the first place.

Given even more time, the shadow itself will disappear. It WILL happen, it WILL get better, and it WILL take time. Trust in the process, have faith in your brain’s ability to heal and focus now on building a better, healthier, happier and more active life.



  1. annette smith says:

    i worked at exercising patience and enjoying the healing experience. i actually looked forward to experiencing the next side effects of my quit. Both the bad and the good. The bad as i knew i had to go thro this wall, and the sooner it came the quicker it would be in my past. It does take time to heal fully but the advantages of being a non-smoker are well worth the wait.

  2. It’s very inspiring to read that things will improve- we just have to be patient, humble, but most of all proud that we have started the healing process :)

  3. Hello,

    Well after the cold turkey method I decided on the 29th of August of 2013 to quit smoking, actualy what Anette writes its true, it was fun to go trough the process, to know what I was about to experience and was prepared to deal with it.
    Today I am still not smoking and the simple thought of smoking has vanished from my mind. Celebrating every crave moment I felt with ” I managed not to smoke !” was truly the big help personaly.
    I realy apreciate this website for helping me understand what was I about to feel during the process, so thank you one more time. I just hope my comment can give strenth to others like other comments gave to me before.
    Cheers from Portugal !

  4. I stopped smoking 6 months ago. The last couple of days I am having constant cravings. Is this normal 6 months in.

    • I suspect you’re feeling the Nornicotine being depleted. It usually happens around the 60 to 120 (or 80 – 100) day mark. Most people experience the same cravings as they did in the first two weeks of quitting. I think the trick is to expect this happening, and consciously avoid and plow through this hurdle so much time after actually quitting.

      I hope you’re still of smokes, even if this isn’t the most pleasant time in the process.

  5. I’m “smoke” free for 6 months now, but I am using the patch 3-4 times a week and using a vaporizer.

    I keep questioning if I’ve really quit. Wanting to look at the “glass half full”, I can confidentialy say yes, I’ve quit smoking cigarettes.

    Although I’m still feeding myself nicotine I’ve worked down to the lowest strength on the patch and worked down a strength on the nicotine in the vaporizer.

    Heck, if it takes another full year before I completely kick the nicotine I’ll be happy and consider that a victory!

    Was smoking 1 and a half packs a day for last 5 years and this is like my 5th attempt at quitting.

    While I’m sure each individual is different, I found using the patch really helped curb those spontaneous cravings where I would go grab a pack on previous attempts to quit. The vaporizer helps with the habit part. It’s been a winning combination for me.

    • That’s not quitting! It’s replacing one source of nicotine for another!

    • DJ may have just replaced one source of nicotine for another but a lot of people simply can not quit smoking cold turkey therefore NRT (nicotine replacement therapy) is the only way they can quit. At least DJ is now cigarette free, that deserves congratulating. Nicotine isn’t actually that bad for you’re body, it’s all the other poisons and chemicals that are in cigarettes/tobacco that kills. DJ may still be using nicotine but at least he/she is living a healthier lifestyle. Well done to you DJ, I wish you the best of luck in continuing to be cigarette free and one day being nicotine free.
      I myself smoked 30+ cigarettes per day for 14 years. I started when I was 15 (I am now 29). I was smoking tobacco roll ups with no filter. Over the years I had tried to quit cold turkey countless times (far too many to remember) but unfortunately I just couldn’t do it. My mood was the worst part, I wanted to kill anybody insight, even if the just smiled at me! My anger at everything was just unbearable, I was impossible to be around and I just couldn’t function. Needless to say in a matter of days, sometimes even hours, I was reaching for a smoke. 19 days ago I quit the cigarettes (roll ups). Granted I am using a vaporiser but at least that is healthier than smoking cigarettes! I will, of course, cut down gradually over time. Using NRT is the only way I am able to quit cigarettes, and I am sure I am not the only one. Even though I am using a vapouriser I still struggle with cravings, to be honest I feel like each day is getting harder and harder. I have days where I think “will this ever end!” I am sticking with it though! This time round I am not prepared to give up giving up! 😀

  6. I’m 11 days into quitting after many attempts. My biggest problem is dealing with stress as cigarettes were my best “friend” when stressful events came up. Physically, I feel better and stronger each day although thoughts of smoking still creep in from time to time. However, I will NOT grab a cigarette no matter how strong the urge! I am determined to kick this horrible habit once and for all!! Stay strong!

  7. Just wanted to say thanks. Your words are helping me get through. Three days in. Im pregnant with my 2nd child. I quit with my first, but i was farther along than I care to admit. Like a junkie i went back when she was only a few months old and have exposed my daughter to second hand smoke. It is very early in this pregnancy and i am done. Thanks again

  8. So, I have been cigarette free for 46 days and nicotine free for 40 days. The last 2 weeks, I am losing my mind. It doesn’t help that my boyfriend smokes “a few a day”…. on my last count a few is a half a pack. I KNOW that if I light up, I am not going to get the experience I think I want. It would make me sick, and I would need to continue to make myself sick for a day or so, before I would get that “feeling” I think I am looking for. I know they say it is supposed to get better but for me, it has been steadily getting worse for the past week or two and I don’t know what to do. :(

  9. Wow reading all your comments kind of freaked me out! I think I underestimated how hard it would be to quit smoking! It seems to be worse than drugs!

    I’m on my 6th day but I must say I wasn’t one of those heavy smokers. I only get cravings when having my morning coffee Cz it used to help me go to the bathroom or after a meal. And of course when I’m out drinking and partying, that’s a whole different story :)

    Only problem I’m facing so far is semi constipation. Not going to the bathroom as regularly as I used to and not very satisfactory.

    Anyway best of luck for u all and me too. Really hope to never go back to this poisonous habit and praying that my constipation will be solved soon without having to depend on any external laxative.

    • Hi Jen! Hoping you’re still not smoking. Just wanted to comment on the constipation. Something I have been doing as a way to add to my lifestyle change, is taking multi-vitamins. I have added Metamucil for constipation. All natural supplement. You could also try a tsp. of mineral oil/day. Neither have poor effects & both natural.
      I am on day 22 today. I came to this site because I am struggling with emotions still. I need to visit more often because it really does help knowing I’m not alone. :)

      • Marguerite says:

        Hi Bobbie, your post caught my eye because of what you said about your emotions. I too am struggling with my emotions but I’m only on day 7.You are six months in by now at least. If you read this, please let me know how long you were an emotional wreck, lol (my words, not yours).


        • I’m on day 9. I fell like I am getting no support from my family. I feel like setting down and crying. Will this ever get better. I’m wondering

          • I know I’m late with this post, but this is my second “quit”. The first “quit” lasted for 7 months and I’m 4 days into this “quit”. Family will only be patient for so long. Work days are stressful, but after work, I manage to throw myself into reading…something I really love. I separate myself from my mother and husband (definitely easier without kids) and immerse myself into my books until it’s time to sleep.

  10. Hi Cameron, I am writing to thank you for taking the time to build this website. At 2.30 PM on October the 9th 2013 I decided to end a 40 year addiction of 20 a day, the last serious attempt in 2009 lasted 6 months, the previous attempt was prior to the fall of the Berlin Wall. I wish I had had the information you have provided on my Berlin Wall attempt. With a whole lot of conviction and armed with your words I traded my cigarette addiction by upping my caffeine addiction coming close to 20 cups a day. My advice is try not giving up things you associate with smoking, every-time I got a craving I told myself I needed another cup of coffee – it only took 6 months to back off- though I don’t recommend this approach if alcohol or hamburgers are your trade off. At this point (around 20 months in) I get a ciggy twinge when I smell it or see someone smoking (even in photographs) and still occasionally wake in panic from a ciggy smoking nightmare though all of this passes within seconds. Persevere it truly does get easier.
    Thanks once again Cameron.

  11. Leslie Floyd says:

    I’ve smoked for 50 years and just five weeks ago had a major heart attack.
    99% blockage, I could hardly talk with 911 as I was home alone and had to try.
    It was like a freight train hit me — pow, immediately light headed, fell to the floor, vomited, cold clammy sweats, laying flat on the floor now, had to crawl to phone, 911 and then I turned over things calming down but the sweating and talked with God. The emt’s got me doing better, had surgery, 2 stents, and decided no more smoking. Quit cold turkey, I didn’t want to give up one habit for another habit. It’s been almost 6 weeks and I still crave a smoke twice a day. Don’t have a great deal of energy so I take naps and do what little I can. Between the heart resting and smokers flu – I hope to feel better soon. I love to be able to smell the air, the flowers, the dirt, all the smells I never knew were around me. Good luck to all !

  12. Louise Mahoney says:

    I have quit for 6 weeks so far. I really have not had cravings as I really do not want to smoke anymore. The anxiety and the nervousness are bothering me the most. One of the website’s I had read said this should diminish after 4 weeks. I found one today that said the nicotine receptors take 6 – 12 weeks, or 10 – 12 weeks for them to return. Has anyone been experiencing bad anxiety?

    • Louise,

      My doctor put me on Welbutrin before I quit to help with the anxiety and because the last time I tried to quit, I thought I would kill my dear husband. It is helping a lot. It is a very low dose and she said it would not be a problem getting off of it. She recommended that I stay on it a year after my quit date because around 6 months you tend to go through another (final) period of withdraw symptoms and that tends to do people in.

  13. Hi all,
    I’m on day 16 now. Yesturday I was at our final softball game and all the players were asking if I was ok. I was extremely grouchy, for about half hour. The more people kept asking what was wrong the more I wanted to burst into tears. That passed. I woke up this morning and the kitchen was messy, again I became superbeast, mad as hell. I saved a single smoke for a ” just incase emergency”. I had it in my lips just about to light it. I was on my phone when I stumbled upon this website. I never in a million years thought support of others stories would help, thank you all who posted it really did help. Again I’m going to do another day.

  14. I’m on day 5 of not smoking. At times I feel like “wow, this isn’t as hard as I thought it would be” and other times (like right now). I feel extremely helpless to my cravings. I purchased these “all natural ” supplements on line and I believe them to be helping some. Also, Lots and lots of sunflower seeds! My first cigarette with my coffee was always my favorite but now (ok, this is weird ) I drink my coffee in the shower. Whatever works, right? I know it will get better but when? I’ve smoked longer in my life than I haven’t so it’s become a part of me. I’ve never tried to quit before. And have never gone 5 days without smoking ever. I plan on this being the first and only time I quit because I don’t want to go through this again. Any words of encouragement or helpful hints are appreciated! Thanks!

    • Nice work Mollie, Do WHATEVER it takes. These words are interesting and helpful. I too have been a pain in the A$$ and my lovely wife has been on the wrong end. I have given up for 3 months twice now and this time I’m up to 5 weeks, so I know there’s a long way to go, but like everyone else reading these words, we have the strength to say ‘Enough’, I’m not going to do this anymore. It costs me ever increasing amounts of money, it costs me my health and I also smell of smoke. I have opened up a ‘Not Smokin’ account at the bank and watch my smoking money accumulate (It’s what works for me). Good luck everybody and remember, be kind to those around you during this withdrawal process’.

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