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Quitting Smoking - Know Everything About It!

Written and reviewed by
MBBS, Diploma in Tuberculosis and Chest Diseases (DTCD), AFIH
Pulmonologist, Navi Mumbai  •  35years experience
Quitting Smoking - Know Everything About It!

Ready to Quit? Then Expect this!

Withdrawal Symptoms: Be aware that the withdrawal symptoms may begin as soon as four hours after the last cigarette, generally peak in intensity at three to five days, and disappear after two weeks. Withdrawal

Symptoms can be

Physical like Headache, tingling in the hands and feet, sweating, gastro-intestinal (cramps, nausea) and/or Mental like tension, craving, anxiety to withdrawal, feelings of dependency, temper tantrums, irritability, intense needs, , insomnia, mental confusion, strong emotional and mental responses like feelings of being an infant.

Plan to Quit:

Before you plan to quit, ask a few questions to yourself like,

  • Do I really want to stop smoking?
  • What is holding me back?
  • What are the Real problems/excuses?
  • Do I accept that there is no miracle cure?

– Be clear about your reason & readiness to stop.
– Draw up an action plan.
– Set a date and stick to it.
– Plan what you will do instead of smoking.
– Give up completely.
– Don’t allow even a quick puff.
– Make quitting number one priority.
– Particularly in the first crucial week.
– Plan it with your friends, agree to support each other and make a pact not to let each other down.
– Make sure all cigs are destroyed.
– Get rid of all smoking reminders.
– Stay away from people who smoke.
– Keep busy.
– Pamper yourself.
– Decide what you are going to do with the saved money and put it aside.
– Try to avoid danger areas.
– Find activities that focus the hands and mind but are not taxing or fattening: computer games, solitaire, sewing, crossword puzzles, etc.
– Set quitting goals on a day to day basis and reward yourself when they are met.
– Think repeatedly about the advantages of quitting.
– Do deep breathing exercises.

Intense Cravings:

When the cravings become uncontrollable, try these 5 D’s
– Delay
– Deep breathing
– Decide
– Drink water
– Do something else

Pharmacological Agents:

Your physician can prescribe you one of the following treatment options to help you quit.

  • Nicotine replacement in the form of Nicotine patches, gums.
  • Medication like Bupropione hydrochloride (Zyban) and Verenicline,(Champix)


In case you have a concern or query you can always consult a specialist & get answers to your questions!
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