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What Are The Side Effects Of Quitting Smoking?

Aug 17, 2007
Another name for side effects of stopping smoking is withdrawal symptoms. And then there are side effects from the stop smoking aids depending on the individual and their addictions, which are used while trying to lesson the withdrawal symptoms. Fortunately, there are very few stop smoking side effects.

In fact, smokers who give up smoking become healthier while living longer as compared to those who fail to do so. They only have to battle a brief period when they give up smoking -- the period when the withdrawal symptoms are most prominent, a time when they feel anxious, irritable, confused and depressed. They may also suffer from a slower heartbeat, increased appetite, and weight gain. However, all these can be controlled through proper counseling and exercises.

The reason for the withdrawal is the body demanding for its supply of nicotine. When going cold turkey, this period can range from 72 hours to two weeks of intenseness and pain, with the amount depending on the smoker and their addiction. The nicotine replacement therapy is especially useful in reducing the side effects as it feeds this hunger for nicotine.

The patient can use nicotine gum, nicotine inhaler, or nicotine patches to release small quantities of nicotine in the bloodstream to lesson the urge to smoke. Because the body is given this drug, it lowers depression and improves well being. They can also use alternative therapies like Tai Chi, Qi Gong, or Yoga to relieve stress and make life without cigarettes more bearable. Another possibility is the use of laser therapy that releases endorphins in the blood stream, making an individual feels better.

The 60% smokers who are most prone to side effects are those who suffer from depression, who usually are requiring extensive counseling and support from family members and friends. Many of them are put on Zyban, an FDA-approved drug that helps to reduce the urge to smoke and is also beneficial for treating depression among those who quit.

Known by the name Bupropion, it desensitizes the brain's nicotine receptors, with seizures as its main side effects in less than one in 1,000. Other side effects, such as insomnia, dry mouth, and headaches are usually more common. Another side effect of quitting smoking is weight gown, usually putting on 5 to 8 pounds of weight, which should not be considered a dangerous side effect.

You should remember that smoking is much more injurious to health than gaining weight, which is controllable through exercise, dieting or Yoga. But you can't undo the damage caused by smoking to your health. Your first priority therefore must be to give up smoking as you will feel better, healthier and more energetic in the long run.
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