It’s normal to experience feelings of withdrawal when quitting smoking. Nicotine is a powerful substance, and as such, your body has become acclimated to its positive effects. Just like someone trying to quit caffeine by reducing their coffee intake, by quitting your smoking you’re likely to feel physiological effects. You may feel less alert and more lethargic throughout the day.
These effects can last days or even weeks. The good news, however, is that these side effects wear off over time as your body gets used to life without nicotine.
Many people just can’t handle how they feel after they quit and so they start smoking again just to feel better. Maybe this has even happened to you. Most people slip up in the first week after quitting. This is when feelings of withdrawal are strongest.
There are medicines that can help with feelings of withdrawal:
Nicotine nasal spray
Bupropion SR pills
Using these medicines can double your chances of quitting for good. Ask your doctor for advice. But remember: Medicine alone can’t do all the work. It can help with cravings and withdrawal, but quitting will still be hard at times.
Here is more information about the different medicines. Also see the Medication Guide.
Nicotine Gum, Patch, Inhaler, Spray, and Lozenge (NRT)
Nicotine gum, patches, inhalers, sprays, and lozenges are called nicotine replacement therapy (NRT). That’s because they take the place of nicotine from cigarettes. NRT can help with withdrawal and lessen your urge to smoke.
You need a prescription to buy the inhaler and nasal spray. But you can buy nicotine gum, nicotine patches, and nicotine lozenges on your own.