Quitting smoking can be the most important health decision a person can make. The average lifespan of a smoker is 17 years less than a non-smoker due to the multitude of diseases, cancers, and other adverse health effects that come with prolonged nicotine abuse. Quitting smoking can be difficult to accomplish for some people because of the psychological difficulties, and of course the physical difficulties as well.
When a person quits smoking the body has to adjust again to not having the nicotine and other poisons influencing their brains and bodies. The good news is that once free, in a very short time to body once again begins to regain balance and normal cardiovascular and nervous system functioning.
This article will look at some of the physical symptoms that can occur when a smoker decides to quit, and how Clinical Hypnosis and Hypnotherapy can help ease these withdrawal symptoms. To be sure, not all smokers experience these symptoms, and some smokers experience none of them.
What Are the Physical Symptoms of Nicotine Withdrawal?
When person quits smoking or taking in nicotine, the body immediately begins rebalancing from the previous constant detoxification from nicotine and the other poisons. The body’s adjustment is felt as withdrawal symptoms. It’s important to remember that withdrawals are sings of the body rebalancing and are therefore good for the body. Here are some of the physical withdrawal symptoms that can occur when a person’s body is readjusting to being free of the poisons from smoking:
- Dry Throat
- Cotton Mouth
- Heart Palpitations
- Muscle Cramps
- Digestive Problems
The more nicotine a person consumes, the more receptors in the brain are created to receive the extra dopamine that is released. Dopamine is the chemical released by the brain that makes you feel good. When the brain expects nicotine (and the accompanying dopamine) and then does not receive it, as in the case of people quitting smoking, these withdrawal symptoms start to appear. However, very soon the body’s own production of dopamine recovers and the person feels good naturally again.
A Brief Timeline of the Physical Symptoms Experienced When Quitting Smoking
Only 20 minutes after a last cigarette, a person’s heart rate will return to normal. This is because nicotine has a mild adrenaline effect on the brain, which affects the heart rate.
As heart rate and blood pressure return to a non-smoker’s level, sensation returns to extremities of the body such as toes and fingertips.
Restlessness and sleeplessness can present itself as early as the first night after quitting smoking. Fortunately harmful carbon monoxide levels in the body have already been decreased by half by this time.
After two days, people can expect the sensitivity of touch, smell, and taste all to return to normal levels, on par with that of non-smokers.
All nicotine is gone from the body and most withdrawals symptoms are alleviated.
The risk of having a heart attack has now been decreased to the same as a non-smoker.
1 Month to 10 months
The lungs have microscopic, hair-like organelles called cilia that remove mucus and other disease causing bacteria. The cilia that have been damaged by smoking cigarettes will start to rebuild themselves and clear out all of the chemical build up that smoking has caused.
1 Year to 15 Years
By maintaining a smoke-free life permanently, life expectancy increases by 17 years. Additionally, the chance of being diagnosed with smoking-related diseases or cancers decreases by 50% after the first five years. Amazingly, after 10 to 20 years, that risk is at the same level of a non-smoker.
Other Physical Symptom Triggers
When a person quits smoking, the brain can now produce sufficient acetylcholine – the neurotransmitter that nicotine simulates – and can now trigger new physical habits that were previously associated with smoking. These new habits are actions. These can include everyday habitual situations such as the following:
- Having a coffee
- The end of a meal
- Drinking alcohol/social events
- Stressful situations
Soon these regular life situations can be lived or enjoyed without the habit of poisoning oneself.
Clinical Hypnosis and Hypnotherapy
While the physical withdrawal symptoms can be a challenge for some people, the short- and long-term internal health and physical benefits far outweigh the inconvenience of a possible few days of discomfort. Quitting properly with Clinical Hypnosis and Hypnotherapy can help significantly minimize these symptoms, and make quitting smoking as easy as possible.
There are many ways of quitting smoking, including patches, gums, e-cigarettes, lozenges, and others. However, all of these methods use some of the same chemicals, carcinogens, and properties that are found in cigarettes, except in different doses and configurations, and some new poisons that are not in cigarettes. Joseph R. Giove is a licensed Clinical Hypnotist who has over 25 years of experience helping people quit smoking without the aid of harmful chemicals and carcinogens that are abundant in other quitting smoking methods. Joseph R. Giove Clinical Hypnosis is ready to help you quit smoking with ease and dignity.