The side effects of quitting smoking are many in number, which most of us are not aware of. Many of us have read articles on what happens when you smoke. However, have you ever thought that stopping smoking can also show some negative effects on your mental and physical health? Read on to know more about this …
‘Smoking is injurious to Health’, it’s a statement that I have known since school. Almost all of us know it and yet we continue this habit on a regular basis. Do you know that when you smoke a single cigarette, you consume more than 4000 chemicals. These life-threatening chemicals enter our body and cause various cardiovascular diseases and respiratory complications.
In addition, a smoker also affects the people standing next to him/her. In fact a person standing next to a smoker is at a higher risk of getting affected. Millions of dollars are spent on advertisements to stop smoking. Yet the number of smokers is on the rise. If you smoke, you may have to face a lot of problems now or in the future, that’s certain. However, once a chain smoker stops smoking, he suffers from a lot of quitting smoking side effects.
Once you go clean, the first week is the most difficult to handle, because the impact of side effects of quitting smoking is the highest. Usually life gets easier in 8 to 12 weeks time. When you become a non-smoker from a heavy smoker, you have to deal with the withdrawal symptoms. The main ingredient in cigarettes is nicotine, which is a highly addictive drug, and withdrawals can be intense. You can suffer from uneasiness, anxiety, severe headaches, and sometimes even panic attacks.
The worst side effect is the craving for tobacco which is a chemical addiction. The body is so used to tobacco that the withdrawal is stressful and unpleasant. Once you decide to go sober, the first 2 weeks are the most critical. In this time, support from family and friends is a must. As you have just kicked your last stick, the side effects are going to be at their peak for 3 to 4 days. Smoking withdrawal symptoms generally take at least 6 months to completely fade out.
Physical Side Effects
Now that we have seen the psychological side effects of quitting smoking, let’s also have a look at physical ones.
- Impatience, restlessness and anger are some of the common physical side effects. After 72 hours without a single smoke, the withdrawal symptoms lose their effect and become mild. Anger is very common in the initial days. Make sure your anger doesn’t spoil your relations with the people close to you.
- You may find trouble sleeping or may get no sleep at all. Nicotine is a powerful stimulant which affects the brain cells, sleep quality, and sleep pattern and sometimes even dreams.
- You may not be able to concentrate entirely on a given situation. Crippled concentration is one of the few side effects which one commonly feels after kicking the habit. Nicotine releases high amounts of fatty sugars in our blood when consumed, as you have stopped smoking, sugar levels in the blood go down, and hence, concentration gets affected. To overcome this situation, spend time alone with yourself, read books, and exercise regularly which gives you a healthy immune system.
- Consume lots of water to flush out the various toxins from your lungs, throat, nasal, and mouth tissues caused by smoking. Once you have stopped, your normal sense of taste and smell start coming back.
- For a long time, we have eliminated activities that don’t go well with smoking. Try to be happy and cheerful, fix a proper exercise program, and try to go for long walks and camping trips, to have a positive and fresh outlook towards life.
- When you quit smoking, food serves as an alternative which has better taste. It is good to have a variety of foods in your diet, but make sure you don’t overeat. You may gain weight, and this could lead to other problems. So it is better to have a balanced diet for healthy living.
Depression is also one of the most common quitting smoking side effects. To boost your morale in these tough times, make sure you have a card which has all the reasons for you to quit smoking. I know all these side effects sound very terrible, but the good news is they only last for a few months. After that you can lead a life which is free from smoke and nicotine.
Disclaimer: This article is for informative purposes only and does not in any way attempt to replace the advice offered by an expert on the subject.