A Deep Dive Into The Side-Effects Of Quitting Tobacco and How To Do It Successfully


For men, smoking is a leading cause of erectile dysfunction.

For men, smoking is a leading cause of erectile dysfunction.

Dr Pritam Kataria, Consultant, Medical Oncology, Sir H.N. Reliance Foundation Hospital shares the side effects of quitting tobacco

The side effects of quitting smoking can be quite severe for some individuals, often leading to withdrawal symptoms due to smoking’s impact on every system in the body. These symptoms commonly include urges to smoke, restlessness, increased hunger, irritability, and negative mood changes. Less frequently, people may experience insomnia, mouth ulcers, and constipation. However, it’s crucial to remember that these side effects are only temporary.

Physical Symptoms

  1. Headaches and NauseaAs nicotine exits your body, headaches, nausea, and other physical symptoms are common.
  2. Tingling in Hands and FeetImproved circulation can cause a tingling sensation in your extremities.
  3. Coughing and Sore ThroatYour lungs start to clear out mucus and other debris, leading to a cough and sore throat.
  4. Increased Appetite and Weight GainSmoking withdrawal is often accompanied by a temporary increase in appetite and weight gain.
  5. Intense Cravings for NicotineCravings peak between the second and fourth weeks as your body adjusts to the absence of nicotine.
  6. Irritability, Frustration, and AngerAdjusting to life without nicotine can lead to irritability and anger.
  7. ConstipationNicotine impacts the small bowel and colon, and its absence can lead to constipation.
  8. Anxiety, Depression, and InsomniaQuitting smoking can exacerbate feelings of anxiety and depression, and insomnia is also common.
  9. Difficulty ConcentratingThe overall impact of withdrawal can make concentrating difficult initially.
  10. Dry MouthSmoking causes dry mouth, which can be worsened by the stress and anxiety of withdrawal.

    How to Successfully Quit Smoking

  11. Focus on Your MotivatorsReinforce your motivation to quit smoking, as it can be short-lived without reinforcement.

  12. Build ConfidenceConfidence is crucial in quitting smoking. Overcoming the fear of withdrawal symptoms is essential.
  13. Stress ManagementMany people smoke to manage stress. Finding alternative ways to handle stress and negative emotions is key.
  14. It’s Never Too Late to QuitQuitting smoking at any age can improve both the length and quality of your life.
  15. Learn from Past ExperiencesPrevious attempts to quit can provide valuable insights into what strategies work best for you.
  16. Use Medications if NeededSeveral FDA-approved medications can help you quit smoking. Consult a healthcare professional for guidance on using nicotine patches, gum, lozenges, inhalers, nasal sprays, varenicline (Chantix), or bupropion (Zyban)


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