What are the Health Benefits of Quitting Smoking?

It’s easy to get caught up on the negative side effects that come with recovering from nicotine addiction and forget about the health benefits. The moment you quit smoking, your brain and body begin to heal and the positive effects of this are well and truly worth remembering. So without further ado, let’s look at the health benefits of quitting smoking!

Mental and Neurological Health Benefits of Quitting Smoking.

As soon as you quit smoking, the brain’s wondrous ability to change (a feature known as neuroplasticity) kicks in and two things will occur.

First, the number of nicotine receptors responsible for causing the chemical cravings begin to decrease. This process is known as down-regulation. A significant amount of down regulation is achieved within the first few days of complete abstinence, with almost complete recovery taking between 6-12 weeks.

Secondly; all of those neural connections linking nicotine and cigarettes to specific behaviours, emotions, memories and environments, will gradually weaken and eventually metabolise. Significant recovery can take several months.

Once the brain heals:
  • You will not experience the intense cravings you feel as a smoker.
  • You will not be pre occupied with smoking or emotionally tied to cigarettes.
  • You will gain more pleasure from everyday experiences such as eating and socializing.
  • You will be less anxious and less susceptible to depression.
  • You will feel more confident and in control.
  • You will attain a higher state of self awareness and be in a far better position to achieve more in life.


 Physical Health Benefits of Quitting Smoking.

There are numerous benefits to your physical health once you quit smoking. The first of which, is staying alive longer and reducing the risk of a painful demise. Studies such as this British doctors study, have shown if you quit smoking before the age of 30, you can add around 10 years to your life. Even at the age of 50 you can add around 6 years to your life. It’s never too late to quit smoking!

Your quality of life will also improve due to a healthier state of being and the fact you will be more physically able to participate in life. Physical activity is extremely rewarding and beneficial to your life experience and vitality.

According to the following timeline available at Wikipedia, you can expect your health to return in the following manner;

  • Within 20 minutes of quitting, blood pressure and heart rate decrease.
  • Within 12 hours, carbon monoxide levels in the blood decrease to normal levels.
  • Within 48 hours, nerve endings and the sense of smell and taste both start recovering.
  • Within 3 months, circulation and lung function improve.
  • Within 9 months, there is a big decrease in cough and shortness of breath.
  • Within 1 year, the risk of coronary heart disease is cut in half.
  • Within 5 years, the risk of stroke falls to the same as a non-smoker, and the risks of many cancers (mouth, throat, esophagus, bladder, cervix) decrease significantly.
  • Within 10 years, the risk of dying from lung cancer is cut in half,and the risks of larynx and pancreas cancers decrease.
  • Within 15 years, the risk of coronary heart disease drops to the level of a non-smoker.



  1. I’m getting a lot from reading this website. Thank You. I’m on day 23 of being an ex smoker after a 30 year habit. Suffering from anxiety and poor sleep (which both multiply each other) but very very proud of my progress. It’s a small thing, but I’m saying I’ve decided to ”become an ex smoker” instead of ”quitting something”, as I feel like I’ve chosen to take something vs give something away. Maybe nonsense, but if it gives me a 1% better chance then I’m going for it 🙂 Wishing everyone else the very best of luck as they delete the pesky things from their brains. Good luck !! Phil

    • I like your thinking!

    • well done phil you must be on a month and a week by now like me :}
      Feeling much better for it = NO …but aware that its the right path to be on YES keep going WE can do it ,,marcus 20-30 a day for 35 years ….

    • missiejojo says:

      Good Job! I also will have a month of not smoking on 8/23/15 !
      That’s a Great why to adjust your thinking! I will try and remember that;-)

    • Susan R says:

      I’m on day 23 also. I’m so proud! This is a huge deal for me. I read everything on how to quit smoking for real this time. I feel better, smell better and don’t have to hide, douse myself with fragrance to mask the smell of cigarettes. I had to be ready. No one could pressure me. I started to not feel well and was convinced I would have a heart attack. I went to the doctor, had a melt down and said to myself, “Just do it”. Smoking is outdated and has been for a long time. What’s working for me is the patch, reading every blog out there, support from my 2 closest friends, lots of deep breathing and drinking lots of water. Congrats to anyone that’s made the decision to stop. Not easy in the least.

      • Hi Susan. I am on day 26, using the patch. I was a 20 year , pack a day smoker! I have never felt better. Hope you have had continued success…..

    • Michelle D'Amato says:

      Hi Phil I too have become an exsmoker 23 days on but 3 years later. I have smoked for 32 years and I suddenly made a decision that may 11th was my last day because my father was diagnosed with IPF and the thought of suffocating was overwhelming to me. I wanted to ask you how you were still doing? I am praying that you are still a ex smoker and is there anything that you have gone through that I may find helpful.


    • Really well done, I’m only on day 7 but feel much better within myself too…. Maybe psychological though lol… Keep up the good work.

    • Shell Norton tyrer says:

      I am a 48 year old women who has smoked since I was 9 years old I have smoked between 20 and 30 a day and I have now been an ex smoker for 5 weeks. I am feeling a whole lot better in myself and my Asthma isn’t as bad as it was

    • Thanks Phil, good on you

    • I was told one day, that you have to have the right frame of mind. Well, I watched something that kind of brainwashed me into thinking cigarettes are the nastiest thing to put in your body. And it’s called Allen Carr Quit Smoking. I watched it once. Let it soak in. Thinking about all I had learned in an hour. The next day, in the morning, I hesitated to light one up. I waited, and seemed to find excuses to NOT smoke. Like, I gotta fold this load of laundry first, oh and the dishes need to be done. I kinda thought that was weird. Then the moment came. I lit up. Oh lord it tasted aweful! Seriously, like I almost threw up. I gagged!!! I had to put it out and go brush my teeth, and gargle with listerine!! After that I haven’t picked 1 up since. Been 22 days. I feel amazing, but gained some weight to my already rotund body lol, my next goal is weight loss.

      • Hooray ! I quit with Allen Carr’s easy way as well . December 26th 2010 . It is September 15th 2018 and I have been an ex smoker for almost 8 years . I would never touch cigarettes again thanks to the book. I have sent it all over the USA to friends and they have all stopped too. I wish everyone on this thread peace and love. Buy the book and be careful how to treat your body during the healing process . Take care

  2. Hi Phil, grats on 23 days! You ought to be proud! 🙂

    I think you are right on, concerning the ex smoker vs quitter mentality. You really are gaining as opposed to giving up something, and as you heal from the addiction it becomes increasingly obvious! 😀


    • I handled my smoking the opposite way because of the smoker/non smoker mentality. I was a smoker for a long time and quit cold turkey which was really tough and gained weight. After a year, it was fine. I could even hang around smokers. Then came terrible work stress and a work friend who smoked. I knew better but got caught again for 7 years, sometimes heavy and sometimes light.
      I decided no one who knew me as a non smoker would know, or at least I would not smoke in order hide my secret. I made a few attempts when going away to visit a non smoker friend but failed until the last September when I spread it to 7 days. I decided to have aids this time; electronic cigarette, and nicotine mints. I still use the electronic cigarette but seldom and never really used the mints although they work.
      I think it is always cold turkey while using aids. I do not like these aids enough to keep them around…just and aid. It is much easier this time and I am not gaining weight.
      First time I quit there was only one way, no aids existed.

      • Hello are you talking about t he electric cigarettes yes I have one as well but I don’t use it what’s going on this is my third day and nobody knows I’m trying to quit and I’m afraid to tell anybody because they ruin it for me. I have a patch and then putting on Nicoderm but the one side effect I’m having a runny nose I’ve had it since we been smoking so I decided not to smoke because I don’t want to feel like this anymore so I was wondering if you had any side effects smoking because now that I quit I’m on antibiotics and it seems like it’s worse sore throat as well I’m coughing up all kinds of junk anyway good luck and I know we all need the support

        • Hi Tracy, It is now 54 days since I stopped smoking cold turkey. Before I quit, I had a constant stuffed nose, About a month after quitting, it’s like the flood gates opened. My nose constantly runs, but I know it’s my sinus releasing all the gunk from 30 years of smoking. I breathe so much better, I feel so much more energetic. I do have an increase in anxiety, but I know it’s the hormones in my brain rebalancing. This too shall pass. It’s cache, but if I can do it anyone can do it. I just feel so proud of myself. My husband, children, and grandbaby are so worth it.

        • Tracy
          How brave! Felt the need to say a prayer for you.i quit almost a month ago. First week vacillated between a war of a little man in my right shoulder and one on my left. One screaming at times…JUST SMOKE ONE, The other repeating No..no..you can do this, just breathe, we REALLY want this, get up
          and walk. Ever since I’ve felt sick, heartburn is the worst, nausea, dizziness. After 2 weeks if those symptoms they seem to be lightening up. In a way I’m glad to ride the sickness out. I keep thinking WOW…that’s the poison I had in my body and that I would never want to repeat this detox ever again. Keep up the fight because like you said…we had to be READY to do this.

  3. Kathryn Ellis says:

    Hi, was reading all your posts, trying to get back on track, I stopped smoking for 12 weeks then last week just went and had a cigarette, I hated myself, but reading your page has helped me, I have stopped again today, nurse gave me patches but trying to go cold turkey, what do you think? Ta Kathryn

    • Hi Kathryn. Glad you’re still at it! My last best fail, lasted 6 weeks. So it’s not unusual. At least now you know the disappointment and depression that comes with relapse. That will help you on the tough days!

      As for patch or cold turkey. Hmmmm… I touch on the pros and cons here.

      It really depends on your situation and what you ultimately feel most comfortable with. I eventually made a cold turkey quit work, I chose it because I just wanted the really difficult stage of chemical withdrawal over hard and fast, so to speak.

      Take your time to think it all through, and I suggest starting with the 5 best practices, if you haven’t already.

      Good luck!

  4. I’m on the eve of my first year quit anniversary. I can’t believe that after 44 years of nicotine addiction I have said goodye to what is a disgusting and dangerous habit. I had a stroke on 5/14/12 and ten in 12/12 I was diagnosed with an aggressive prostrate cancer. I refused to smoke and simply moved forward to recovery. For those of you in the process of quitting believe me when I say it gets better.

  5. Raja Liaqat says:

    Dear ,
    i have complete one week as ex-smoker. i just diagnosed T2 and and also HDL 0.80. although my diabetes level controled now by Metformin but still having sometime condition that something running out from legs and having sleeping condition with high headach. my blood pressure remained 100/70 which is on low side. any body guid me is this bcz of quiting nicotine?

    • I recommend asking your doctor about the affects nicotine has had on things such as insulin levels in the body. When you quit and start recovery, your body does go through some big changes, again it is best to keep in touch with the doctor. 🙂

  6. Dear,
    I am on day 7 and since two days got this cold,.Is it normal?

    • It’s not a cold, your body is starting to chunk up all that snot packed down in your lungs. Your nose will run, your eyes will run and you might get the runs. I’ve been quit 21/2 years. I used the e-cig that you put your nicotine in. I used top nicotine level for months, then I started moving down. When I got I using 6 nicotine along with zero I quit completely. Istarted on those Blues. But the vaps are best. Just don’t get those huge things. Settle for the small ones and then ween yourself off that. People say the vaps are fine but my cough never went completely away till I dropped that too.

      • I quit 113 days ago (about 2 weeks before my 56th bday.). I decided to become a non smoker just like I decided over 4 years ago that I was going to become a non alcohol drinker! So far, so good! I gained about 7 lbs but it might be becuz I started lifting weights together with a 3 mile power walk at least 3x per week!

  7. Dear,Thanks i learnt a lot from here.
    I am on day 7 and since two days, got this cold,.Is it normal?

  8. This is my 5th day since I stopped. Hurrah!!! I havent experienced any effects. I think its because I jog every morning for +- 7 to 10km. I have been jogging even when I was smoking. Never a heavy smoker though but have been with this addiction for 25 years. I do not wish to smoke again.

  9. 6 months into my cold turkey quit, this is really good reinforcement!
    Thanks for the site.

  10. I am on Chantix. I have been taking it now for 8 days. I put my cigarettes down yesterday at 5pm and haven’t picked one up nor will I. It has been 17 hours without a smoke and i am shocked at how minimal the cravings are. They tell you to smoke the first 7 days and i have come to the conclusion that during this 7 day period my brain was not receiving the nicotine. So in a sense my brain has been smoke free for 8 days and this would explain the ease of quitting this time. Is this an accurate assumption?

    • Hi Matthew,

      So far as I understand it, while you smoke, your brain will still receive some nicotine. However, Varenicline, (Chantix) blocks many of the nicotine receptors and this has two effects. The first being that it keeps the dopamine channels/connections in your brain open and active. This helps regulate the cravings. The second, is that it blocks a lot of the nicotine from binding to receptors, as Varenicline is already occupying them. I would speak to your chemist to get a more detailed explanation…

      Hope that helps in the mean time 🙂

  11. Hi all day 8 of status of ex smoker, I have been taking 5htp to help keep mood positive and naturo pharm quit craving homeopathic remedy. Both have helped but defenity more tired than usyal as I have stopped drinking coffee as well. No more money to fat cats u scavenge a living selling or making ciggies and no more unnecessary tax to govt. Wishing all best of health lets be smoje free country by 2020.

  12. it’s been just over 2 weeks since my last cigarette, and i already feel like i can breathe again. i quit cold turkey, and what really keeps me on this train is seeing all the crap that i’m spitting up, it’s quite unnerving really, as being only 22, i had been smoking since i was 17, which has been around 5 years. It isn’t near as long as others but i feel a great accomplishment hanging over my head and i am staying away from this very unhealthy habit. once and for all. This site is very reassuring as well, glad to have came acrossed it.

  13. After getting a scare from my X-ray I decided it is time to be free….. I have smoked for 32 years at least a pack a day. I quit 4 days so far, using low dose patch and hard candy. Please tell me it gets better…. I find my mood is nasty and I am exhausted!

  14. Hi All, I just quit smoking and drinking cold turkey after about 20 years. The hardest part was definetly the first couple of days. I had stopped smoking cigs in 2004 but continued with my marihuana habit. It made it a New Years resolution to stop and I am happy to say that I have not relapsed. I’m just curious has anyone quit alcohol as well at the same time? And did anybody experience any body pains in the back specifically? Good Luck to everyone who has decided to put this addiction behind them.

  15. I had to say to my self when a craving hits “I’m all right” “I’m ok without them” I think the mind goes in to panic mode when it doesn’t get the nicotine it’s use to. It’s hard to fight the craving because the brain subconsciously is screaming “the Sky is Falling!” reassure your brain that it alright everything is fine. Comfort your mind and it will calm down.

    • After being quit over a year I suddenly started having massive cravings again. It about undid me. Now I understand why people quit several years suddenly start up again. It went on for six weeks. It was relentless. It’s finally over and I’m ok again but just a heads up so you don’t freak out like I did at first.

  16. Re: Mark on 2/4/14… I am on day 4 on no smoking or drinking. Figured if I drink it will make it harder to not smoke so I decided to stop both. As s bar owner, this is also making it easier to not go to work! Oops! Anyway, I’m taking Chantix (2 weeks today), 4 days of non smoking, really minimal withdrawl, smelling smoke has actually helped the cravings pass. HOWEVER, the lower back pain is flipping NUTS!! The last 3 days I have woke feeling like I was hit by a truck! Tried 800mg Motrin before bed last night and this morning…slightly better, but not much. I too would appreciate any insight about this. Good luck on your quit!!

    • RE: back pain(kelly)
      I am into 5 weeks of non smoking and today was struggling until I looked on this website. Many thanks. My wife recently started Juicing and one thing that it does is detox the body. Toxins are released and this gave her really bad lower back pain for about 7 -10 days, then it passed and she feels great. I dont know if it is related with stopping smoking and the body healing as i havent experienced any back pain but thought this might be the reason.

  17. Hey I got a question I’m on day 6 now and I’m getting really mad at work easily I only get 7 hours of sleep a day Nd now that I quit smoking I get even less sleep and I’m working minimum of 13 hour shifts and I’ve just been getting really really depressed is that a side effect of quitting smoking and if so how long does it last ?

  18. I think you should add to the list: improved condition of skin, nails and hair; and fewer facial wrinkles (slower ageing).

  19. I started smoking when I was 15 at first was a laugh but at 46 now. I only quit cold turkey at first in feb this year..have had nothing but troubles since..like toilet..rash and more got a urge saturday to go buy some and I said NO…also bad earing..and noises…will this ever go away

  20. I just turned 70 yrs. old and I know that stopping smoking now probably won’t help me a lot at this point. I smoked for 45 yrs. and have been smoke free for 7 months. If I can anyone can! Very happy with me right now!

  21. Well quit on 8/2/14. I am getting really bad leg cramps and strange dreams. I am doing this thing cold turkey. I am 40 this year! I also did feel the sick as hill feelings for 24hrs. Over all coughing to the point of wanting to throw up sometimes. When I smoked, I never coughed and worked out about an hour daily. Just seeing and smelling wierd things. Only going on day 5!! WOW 🙂

    • Hello this is my 3rd day of not smoking cigarettes and I still have 2 in my house. I know it’s mind over matter but I’m giving it my all. I read most of the things that we’re on here and wanted to ask when you did smoke did you have any affect from smoking? Because I get a running nose now that I havent been smoking it’s gotten worse can any person tell me why this is happening to me and I’m on antibiotics as well thank you

  22. Hi want to wish all us new non smokers all the best.
    As for me it’s day 5 the 1st 3 days I did use an electronic cigarette, so yesterday and today I decided to throw that out cause it does have some nicotine, so am I starting withdrawals now? smoking 40 years 2 packs a day. no cough, leg cramps, sleep not good, can’t stop looking for something to eat, and all I think about is lighting up. hope this goes away soon

  23. I quit 6 months ago after smoking for 45 years. At 63, I’m surprised by how much better I’m breathing and how much less I’m coughing! There’s a lot less drama in the mornings, when I first brush my teeth, without the prolonged hacking and spewing. Girls no longer complain about the stench. I’m getting better sleep because I never wake up in the middle of the night to blow my nose(!) or cough. I seem to have a bit more stamina. Exercise helps with cravings, which do gradually diminish. My experience with cravings was the feeling that very soon I would have to have a cigarette because the craving would become uncontrollable/unbearable. But that moment never comes!

  24. Hello everyone. Its a little over a month for me. I started on the nicotine gum, and I stopped using it less and less over the weeks like it advertised but I didn’t think I could Lol. I’m down to one or two a day now, even though I’m supposed to be done with gum completely by now. But it’s better than going back to smoking! as far symptoms, I’ve been getting a bunch. Feeling like I lost a friend, to waking up in the middle of the night on a regular basis, to having cold symptoms. I have add though I haven’t hacked up much, should I be prepared for this ?

  25. Hi friends. This is my day 1. Wishing to quit my smoking habit from today for a healthier and happy life. Nothing is impossible. I can and I will do it. I was smoking for last 3 years and my age is 22. Always remember the quote ‘smoking kills’. Wish me a better life.
    Thanks & Regards

  26. i am on day 7 and wondering maybe i shouldn’t bother making this work- i mean i am going crazy and now i get a ct done and my lungs are messed up!!! I really hate to say this but whatever time i have left maybe i should enjoy what i like to do?? Sorry just really down and don’t even feel like me anymore – life as i once knew it is now changed forever!! thanks to anyone who is listening.

    • its never too late to quit, im saying this at 00:56 quiting myself. Stay strong its okay to feel down, im not the worlds best person with words but you inspire me and alot if people around the world

      • thanks marchell for the nice words and thoughts!! I am still with it 12 days now and i am not going back!! I am trying very hard to stay positive and enjoy everything life has to give me!! Thanks again and you stay strong bc you can do it!!!!!!!!!! talk to you soon marchell

  27. Finaly 23 day without smoking….i was not sure i can do it , but here i am 23 days with out smoking after 15 years…..Thanks God.
    What it makes me seek is,to stop smoking i spend a lot of money for farmacy.
    But the answer was to courage my self to be ex smoker.
    Be strong everybody !!!!! You can do it.

  28. What actually helped me greatly was to regard every craving that came along as “weakness leaving your body”.

    Aside that plunging yourself into sports (running, fitness) turned out to provide for a perfect alternative “addiction”. It also resulted in me loosing weight (instead of gaining) after I quited.

  29. Day 4 of giving up the smelly cigs.using a vapour cig for substitute going ok at moment still getting cravings but I will not give in.things tasting different and sense of smell is so much better no coughing up my guts in morning more energy and feel alive

  30. alec lindsay says:

    i stopped 28 oct after 45 years smoking 20 to 30 a day cold turkey threw out emergency just in case cigarettes yesterday am now a confirmed non smoker was is my first and only quit

  31. 15 Dec 14 stopped smoking I was on cigarettes quit them xmas 2010. Started smoking cigars. 6 months later….now I have gone for the final hurdle 7 days cold turkey…..I am irritable, heartburn and determined. Never going back but boy today has been tough!

  32. hi everyone happy new year – i was wondering i have not had a smoke since nov 8, 2014 but have gain 10 lbs or so and i am very upset about this. i have always being heavy and try so hard to watch my weight but not smoking i have turn to food and i hate it and hate the way i look! i go to the gym 5 days a week and still gain weight – i think it is a waste of time and maybe going back to smoking will help me to lose this horrible weight?? I just am so depress and wish i was thin i just hate myself right now!!!

    • Kathy, please don’t start back up. I follow a group on fb for weight loss and what helps me lose the weight is counting calories on my fitness pal. Please stay positive.

  33. Hi giys, I am so joyfull to read so many comments about quitting smoking! Even though I don’t know you, I am very, very pround of each one of you. And you can imagine how the people who LOVE you must be happy for you!
    I found this page while looking for information I could pass on to my 9 years old daughter 🙂
    I am a non-smoker since over 9 years now, I smoked for 20 years. I never smoked in these 9 years and this was actually the biggest accomplishment for me, because I always wanted to quit, but I never trusted myself, that I could.
    I wish all of you all the best and even though you may gain weight, don’t forget to look on the bright side. I wouldn’t change it for myself.

  34. Does cameron Kellett ever get on here anymore? I would like to know how long he’s been an ex-smoker. I’m on day 6 cold turkey after almost a pack a day for around 17 years. I’m only 36 and realized that after I got asthma I was done. I’ve heard that makes it worse on people when they are quitting? Does anyone know this info…. I’ve also been battling the flu…. so I’ve come out of the worst…I hope… coughing up brown and black. However I’m worried about few weeks down the road to. I’ve heard asthmatics have it worse. Anyone who has asthma on here and quit cold turkey.

    • Hi Jenn, I am still here, I often read and moderate the comments for spam etc. I comment more on the google plus page as opposed to here. I have been an ex smoker for over 3 years now 🙂 Not sure about asthmatics having a harder time with it than others. Well done on your getting through that first week btw. Stay strong!

    • My Dad quit when he was 61. Smoked since he was 9 and has always had asthma. He didn’t seem to have anymore than the usual withdrawal symptoms.

  35. Diane Jones says:

    Hello, I have just moved into week 7 after quitting cold turkey. I have not found it that hard, even after 60 years of smoking and around 18 to 20 a day.
    I stopped for two or three reasons, one I refuse to pay the price nowadays! WHOOO!
    The other my breathing was starting to get to me, cant walk the speed or distance I used to. Still I guess at 77 that’s to be expected.
    On top of that I have just had a rough 8 months of fighting breast cancer… I am now in the clear, Hip Hip.
    Some days I really miss my ciggie.
    I cant say in all honesty I have quit for ever never to return… but in all honesty I hope I continue to stay clean. Good to read all the comments.

  36. Hey,
    After 15 years of smoking I am now 4days smoke free thanks to Champix and will power. Sometimes I want a smoke really bad, usually in the morning and after supper, but I have been fighting the cravings with glasses of water. I decided to quit for a couple of reasons. First of all, as a single mother who is also a student, the $300 I used to spend a month on smokes is better spent elsewhere. Secondly, I dont want to lead a poor example for my son. He is only a year and a half old, so by quitting now he doesn’t need to know i ever smoked. And lastly, i want to live long enough to meet my grand babies. I have a lot of life left to live, i dont want to spend it riddled with health problems linked to smoking.

    Here’s to us, all of us! For having the strength to take control over the addiction to fight for a better quality of life! Way to go! Stay strong! Breath deep! Take it one craving at a time! And celebrate every moment you go smoke free! 🙂

  37. Been 57 hours since I last smoked. Good riddance now can finally breathe a little, having quit in the past…. I think the main thing to aknowledge is you’ll always be tempted for the rest of your life but never give in to even just one cigarette or even a few drags because it will surely lead you right back in. So best way Is reinforce and train yourself to hate cigarettes and anything associated with smoking and replace with a healthier lifestyle particularly the gym. Good luck everyone

  38. I am on day 23 smoke free. 🙂 I feel good but honestly i feel like I crave different things now. For example, right now i am craving doughnuts. I ate two jars of pickles in the last two weeks! I am not pregnant but feel like i need to replace the urge to smoke with something becuase if not, I cant do it. But I wanted to share that is article is so true! I enjoy my life more. I have more time becuase I am not setting aside time to hide and smoke cigs. I signed up for the gym and started eating healthier! aside from these doughnut I am about to buy! I have not had a cough, thank god! The last few times I tried to quit i had a cough. anyway, stay strong we all CAN DO IT!

  39. Been 5 days …chewing gum drinking more water …… chewing on Popsicle stick and toothpicks . ..having muscle cramps …I have strong urges but haven’t gave in…..glad I have somewhere to vent

  40. Hi 3 days in and the cravings just starting to subside. Have raided the cookie jar and eaten everything in sight but extra pounds are worth it to get get rid of this monkey on my back. Have found water with some lemon squeezed in seems to help and leaves a nice taste in the mouth. also herbal tea. Good luck to all. the benefits far outweigh the discomfort you going through now.

    • Hi I’m on day 7 from quitting cold turkey
      I am type 2 diabetic. My main reason to quit was that I had a persistent feeling that smoking had been the main cause for me losing energy and not feeling as healthy as other non diabetics . It’s been a week, having few symptoms after quitting, but for ten years have never felt the energy like the one I’m having today. Indeed, two days after quitting, and away from craving for a cigarette, i felt that I was getting back my energy, having clearer vision, no headaches, and ever ready to perform, think and act better than ever though sleeping for less than 5 hours.
      I know that one of the symptoms of being diabetic is the feeling of fatigue and tiredness and I truly believe that smoking would worsen such a condition even if diabetes is very well controlled.
      I could firmly say that for smokers who are also diabetic that quitting smoking would bring about a tremendous change in the quality of their lives as I’m experiencing it now. I know that I’m overgeneralizing a fact but we diabetics share more or less similar symptoms and smoking is just adding insult to the wound and worsening all symptoms related to diabetes

  41. I am also on day 5 of officially quitting smoking. I started to only smoke “socially” which really meant on the weekends about 2 weeks ago, however, I found that every week I would experience symptoms of withdrawal. It wasn’t even the cravings that were the worst part, it was the restless sleeps and stomach aches. My skin kept breaking out in weird places, and after 5 days of not smoking and then having about 6 over the weekend, my gums would be inflamed and bleed. The last two weeks have been a struggle, and I can see what nicotine is actually doing to my body! I can see the negative effects of nicotine that my body has been compensating for for 10 years now!! It is time to say goodbye forever to this habit, and give my body a fair chance to heal. Over the past two weeks I have developed coping strategies for cravings. The one that has helped me the most is to ask myself, “Do you really need to smoke? Do you really need to, or are you going to be ok without it?” and the answer is always no, no I don’t really need to, I am going to be better without it.

  42. Hello everyone! I’m not a smoker; just on here looking for info that may help my dad (an ex smoker). I got carried away reading everyone’s comments and just wanted to say I’m proud of yall for pursuing a healthier and overall better life. No matter how many or how few days you’ve been smoke free, congrats!! You’re all making great strides! Keep fighting even if you feel down. Of course there are shortlived downsides, but goinh through them will definitely be worth it in the long run. On a sidenote, it’s so nice to see how supportive everyone is here!!

  43. Dear,Thanks i learnt a lot from here.
    I am on day 22 by cold turkey, but my problem is when see some person smoking i feel that i need so how long it will take about that condition

  44. I’ve been a smoker for almost 15 years and finally made the decision to go without tobacco. Going cold turkey and at the end of day six! I have found it best (for my own sanity, and for craving resistance) to treat my quit as a really bad break up that I know is for the best for me. Doing this for myself and my future. I wish everyone the best of luck and stay strong! It won’t kill you to quit, but will to keep smoking!

  45. Nearly 6 weeks since I stopped. I read the book on the easy way to quit smoking. What a Godsend it was. After reading here, how people have still had urges, mood swings and the constant thoughts of just another smoke…. No urges and I have tried the patches, the tablets, cold turkey, replacement lollies and over-eating over the past 36 years. I just stopped and haven’t looked back. No dramas. It took the wife and family 2 weeks to notice that I had stopped. I took that as symbol of success that my mood/behavior hadn’t changed enough for them to notice earlier. I smoked 30 to 40 a day and even with the effects of my body healing the damage from smokes I feel great..

  46. Hello,

    Any one knows what happened to me?

    I used to smoke since 18 I am now 42 a pack a day; suddenly since 3 months ago I do not have any desire to smoke even 1!

    What is it?

  47. Hi all,
    I am on day 23 I never thought I could do it but so far so good. I smoked for 40 years and in the end it was about 50 roll your owns a day. That’s the same as approx 10 grams a day. I am on Champix and it seem to work. The first 2 weeks weren’t as bad as I thought it could have been. The cravings were there but not unbearable. I have done a lot of deep breathing the last 23 days and that seems to help a bit. I had a bit of a few rough days earlier this week and went to t he chemist for something to settle me down as I felt on edge all the time. He recommended some vitamin b complex and I must say it helped big time so I will carry on with that.
    I gave up for health reasons as I feel I have crawled through an eye of a needle as nothing is wrong with me and hope I have avoided it. I did have a cough every morning and out of breath fast, both those symptoms disappeared after day 2 so I am pretty pleased about that.
    Some other thing I have noticed in the last 23 days are, he stains on my teeth are disappearing, my smell is amazing haven’t smelled things properly since I was about 14, my skin feels and looks better, my house stunk for about 14 after I stopped smoking,my brown patch on my finger has disappeared oh and I saved my self $750.00. I live in New Zealand and 50 gram of Tabbaco is about 73 dollars a packets so that’s a major bonus with giving up. I wish every one the best of luck and hope I will write again in 6 months to say I am still smoke free.

  48. its helped me so much from reading all of what i have and im on my 5th day of quitting its hard but im sticking to it as im asthmatic i feel so much better since ive quit i can exercise and feel more fitter im so happy now ive quit

  49. annamarie says:

    I have been stopped for 26 day’s now, not used anything, I got diagnosed with womb cancer I was smoking quite a lot of cigarettes couple of days before my operation I developed a chest infection so my operation had to be cancelled that’s when I decided to give up, I should have had my operation on the 1st of October but they rang me an hour before I was due to go in and cancelled again due to no beds was very upset about it normally I would have gone and lit up but I didn’t I not very good with stress but if I can get through this without smoking I can get through anything plus I have a husband and son who smoke which to be honest it doesn’t bother me but they really do smell lol, I don’t really write anything like this but reading all these stories has made me want to share thank you anna xx

  50. I am 37 years old and have smoked roughly a pack a day since I was 19 (except I quit for two years in 2007-2008). I quit cold turkey 47 days ago. I am never looking back!! I really think the key is WANTING to quit. One year ago I started seriously working out after years of off-and-on workouts. I decided smoking didn’t make any sense with all the good changes I am doing for myself. Because I really wanted to quit, I did not feel my withdrawal symptoms were that bad. Totally manageable. The worst was over in one week. I rarely think of them at this point and and am even getting to the point of if I pass someone on the sidewalk smoking it doesn’t really make me want one anymore. I am THRILLED at my decision and also thrilled to save the money!!! I spent about $140 a month on cigarettes.

  51. Hi….Im a quitter….and a gainer of life. 38 years and never planning to give up. Without planning to, I gave up 25 days ago. Not as difficult as I thought but one has to really want to give up. Plan a BIG reward for yourself. Download an app on your phone that keeps track of your non smoking days and google healthy lungs vs smoking lungs…..it’s scary!!!

    Did I really smell as disgusting as those smokers that I walk past 🙁

  52. Lorelle Roberts says:

    Hi all now 22 days smoke free. Had a heart attack 3 weeks ago. 2 blockages in arteries cleared with 1 stent in place. Still recovering at home but no cigarettes for me. Biggest incentive not to smoke and a hard way to realise how bad they are. Scared of ciggies and thats a good thing. 56 years old got a lot of living to do minus the smokes.

  53. Hello all, I wasn’t expecting to write anything, but wanted to share a few things. I’ve had a long relationship with smoking. I started at age 14 and quit when I found out I was pregnant at 29 years. Was smoke free for 5 years when, after the birth of my second child, my husband started smoking again. I smoked for two years, developing strategies to quit and finally quit September 1st, 2015. Firstly, I began to take note of craving patterns. Some days I only wanted to smoke, regardless of stress and then a few days afterward, I didn’t want anything to do with smoking. Next, I began delaying cravings by finding something I enjoyed smelling, like a lipbalm, or a candle, or a citrus fruit and holding it under my nose when a craving would strike, breathing deeply. I waited for my low craving day, hit the cravings with the olfactory stimulus and slept…ALOT. I gave myself permission to sleep as much as I felt I needed, while keeping an orange on hand to smell. I honestly think having coping strategies in place and being prepared to deal with cravings proactively is the only way I made it to becoming an ex smoker. I wish you all much success and truly hope that there are more ex smokers in 2016. Happy New Year to you all.

    • That’s awesome Bette! ! At 15 days quit, after 37 years, I thought I was getting a little freakish about smelling and tasting everything hahaha but I’m glad to know I’m not the only one. And yea, let’s just make it a craving-reduction strategy as you say. I was so excited about being able to smell an orange as I peeled it that I began rubbing it all over me. Hilarious!!! and refreshing!!! Everyone always told me what a great cook I was, and only recently I’ve been able to actually taste my own food. Delicious!! It’s all pretty amazing, and makes me want to STAY QUIT!!!! Thanks for sharing and good luck everyone. We got this!!! 😉

  54. * wow you are all so inspiring & im so blessed to hear so many of you fighting off the deadly cancer stick as so I used to call it…. I am 23 years old & I started smoking when I was 15 years old… I decided to quit cold turkey and I am oficially an ex-smoker now marking today as day #8 🙂 I am so proud of myself & my new healthy lifestyle and I will NEVER look back again.. it hasnt been easy but if you REALLY truly want it you will succeed ! ♥♥♥ god bless all your souls

  55. Hi. I am ysmael from the Phiippines 63 yo and on my 60 days of no smoking. Though I experienced a lot of withdrawal symptoms I am determined not to smoke again.. A lot of us are smoking because a pack of cigarettes (20 sticks) cost only abt usd 0.50 to 1 usd. And you also can buy per stick at the small store.. I am doing the drive to my relatives and friends to quit smoking.. For me, its a complete No!no now to smoking. Good luck to my classmates here on this site..

  56. 1st full day of no nicotine..haven’t had a cigarette since may 6 2016. However I was vaping…then I went to the lozenges…both gave me migraines..so today is the first full day or no nicotine…wish me luck…because after 31 years ofor smoking I’m going to need it…

  57. Shell Norton tyrer says:

    I am 48 years old and and I have been smoking since I was 9 years old I smoked between 20 and 30 a day and more when I’m drinking alcohol I have now been an ex smoker for 5 weeks with the help of an E cig I feel a lot better in my self and my Asthma is a whole lot better to. I’m hoping to go the rest of my life without smoking I will keep you all updated with my progress.

  58. Karma Prem says:

    I feel so good when i read this. I quit smoking and alcohol from last two weeks and I had feel some uncomfort like anger,chest pain etc but after read this, i really feel good.
    Thanks alot

  59. I was on and off since freshman year of HS. Quit for a year and a half but got back into it 4 months ago and was easily a half pack or more a day. Quitting as soon as I finish my pack! With me being a hypochondriac, the health anxiety and all the crap that comes with smoking just isn’t worth it.

  60. Something I’ve never understood is why the famous “shepard’s crook” graphs showing smoking and lung cancer almost always show a steady 20 year time lag, while quitting smoking is supposed to cut the cancer risk in half in just 10 years.

    Can someone explain that?

    – MJM

  61. I know this is an old thread, but I needed to write this somewhere. I’m on day 4 of quitting smoking. Cold turkey. There are times I’m fine and, oddly, don’t even think about a cigarette. Other times I’m having a battle in my head to say NO…just 1 WILL hurt you. I’ve been a smoker for 20 years. Tried to quit many times through all the different options (chantex, the patch, gum, electronic cigarettes). Nothing worked. So I decided to just go cold turkey. I’ve never made it this far before so I’m proud of myself for this road that finally looks to be a success for me! Only when I hit 3+ months smoke free will I share the news with friends and family. Excited!!

  62. I am an ex smoker. I am 10 months now. Just need to know a few things.
    1. I started smelling and tasting cigarette smoke and I don’t like it.
    2. My nose is so stuffed up, I can’t taste good or smell anything. I thought all this would be gone. I don’t cough or anything.
    3. Should I see a doctor or is all this normal?
    4. I quit cold turkey and I am not going back.
    5. I haven’t gained weight, that’s great.
    6. I now have to sleep with a fan. Anyone else?
    7. Is it all in my head, like I want to go back, but I’m not going back…..EVER.
    PLEASE HELP me before I start going crazy.
    I think I’m doing great not smoking.

  63. Hi,

    You are doing great. Do not give up. I found” Allen Carr’s easy way to stop smoking” book Excellent. It shows how smokers are brainwashed and how they must re-train their thinking. I walk past smokers and I feel sorry for them. I do not feel the urge to smoke, in fact I have a big smirk on my face and I give myself a pat on the back. K

  64. the things I don’t miss after 40 yrs of smoking …
    1/ Feeling embarassed about smelling like an ashtray
    2/ Having the cigarette run my day eg. when and how can I have one as it’s not good to smoke anywhere anymore
    3/ Being worried about the pain in my chest or my shoulder blade being heart disease or cancer
    4/ Getting cancer and knowing I caused it by being stupid and everybody thinking that but not saying it
    5/ Having my husband look at me with disdain and disgust everytime I quit and then started again
    …..on day 42…. quit Jan. 1/ 2017 I am a smokaholic and will never smoke again

  65. Leslie Howell says:

    I’m quite confused as a great number of the side effects I’ve not experienced, yet some of the benefits (not coughing every time I laugh, not fighting cravings, sleep less but far better, noticeable increase in energy, allergy headaches less than half of previous incidence). I quit cold turkey 3 weeks ago, I’m enjoying the physical improvements so much that’s all I can think about and have no more than 3 cravings a day and that’s only because previously that’s what I’d be doing at a specific time of day…is there a giant shoe that’s going to fall on me around the corner…? I’m 55, and smoked since 14.

  66. diane hughes says:

    Hi.. I am turning 70 in a couple months. Have recently been diagnosed w/emphysema. Smoked a pack a day for 50 years. Is it really going to make any difference if I quit now?? I am intrigued by all the ‘quality of life’ posts. But really don’t think it will add any years. So, old people, help me out here please.

  67. Im33 days ex smoker having my good in bad days but haven’t coughed up any thing yet’ is this normal

  68. This is 105 Hrs of not Smoking. Feeling good and full of energy.

  69. I’m turning 70 this year, and I’ve been off ciggs for 9 mths. I sleep a lot and eat a lot. But, when I hit that 1 yr mark, I will begin worrying about losing the weight.
    Until then, at least I don’t stink. Now, when I sit next to someone who smokes, it just freaks me out how bad they stink!

  70. 7 months without ciggies.
    29 year habbit..
    I find its all about swapping bad habbits for healthier ones.
    I eat well now..I excercise everday.
    I do light weights and have just joined a fitness gym.
    I shake my head somedays wonderiing why I ever smoked to begin with..

  71. Natalia Grube says:

    I know it’s pathetic I’m on day 2. I would’ve been 7 but I smoked this past Wednesday. All your stories are amazing and give me motivation and hope. I have heart murmurs at 25 years old. I started smoking when I was 16. I just want to be healthy again. I want my health back. The cravings are the worst but if all of you amazing people can do it. So can I!

  72. I am 56 years old, I am not sure my exact date of starting, I believe in my teens for sure. I almost can’t remember when I didn’t do it! I’ve hated it for years but just could not stop!! I’ve tried everything over the years, laser treatment, patches, acupuncture, pills… Even at my 20 year reunion I thought enough i have smoked 20 years time to quit. The friend i told to quit with me at this time did, I did not! Now 22 days nicotine free. I’ve cold turkey it!!! I feel so empowered!! I want this so bad for me , my kids and my grand kids.. I want to live and be healthy.. I never want another sneaky gross cigerate!! I have to keep going!!!

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