How long does it take to Stop Craving Smoking?
Not only is quitting smoking beneficial to your body but it also has far-reaching effects on other parts of your life. From a social perspective, you will be able to interact better with your family and loved ones. You will also be able to save more and use your finances wisely as you will no longer be under the control of nicotine.
Read; How to Quit Smoking
The journey however is not without its own set of challenges. Once you have quit smoking, quitters experience restlessness, spouts of anger and anxiety, and an increase in appetite. And while some last only for a few weeks, smoking cravings have been known to last for months. Bringing us to the subject matter of the article, how long does it take to stop craving smoking?
Voom Labs offers its professional take on the matter.
How long do nicotine cravings last?
It will first be prudent to explain why you are experiencing cravings, to begin with. Cigarettes and other related products contain nicotine responsible for addiction. When inhaled, nicotine gets transported to the brain via the blood. It triggers the release of brain chemicals, dopamine included, that are responsible for pleasure sensations.
When you decide to quit smoking, you are cutting off the brain’s supply of nicotine to which it had become used. Naturally, it will take a while for your body to adjust. When your brain realizes that the supply of nicotine is low, it sends out signals that it needs more. This is what causes the cravings. Cravings will be hardest for those who have smoked for longer.
When you cut off the supply of your body to nicotine, it takes several days for your body to expel the nicotine in your body. That’s when the cravings kick in the hardest. If you are looking to quit smoking, expect intense cravings that will last between ten to twenty minutes. Cravings occur intermittently and only for a short period.
Your brain chemistry will take several months to adjust to the new status quo i.e. reduced nicotine levels. As you approach the first month, expect your cravings to lessen in frequency and intensity.
From the sixth-month mark onwards, smokers start experiencing a sense of normalcy in their lives. They can now breathe easy and the social and behavioral effects of nicotine are almost non-existent.
Read also; Can your lungs Heal from Smoking?
However, the team at Voom Lab issues out a warning: Be on the lookout for seasonal triggers! Some of your triggers could be seasonal. You could be in months in the quitting program only to experience a strong and sudden urge to smoke. At such times, don’t think that you are backsliding. It might be that an image or smell has awakened those old associations in your mind.
It is best to always have a craving management plan ready for any such occasion. Continue reading to find out how.
Managing your cravings
It would be criminal to talk about cravings without offering advice or tips whenever you feel the urge. These tips can form the elements of a full-proof plan whenever a smoke craving is triggered.
Here is a list of strategies compiled by the team at Voom Labs:
You are not alone in your fight against smoking. During this difficult time, it is important and necessary to lean on the support of others. We are not ignorant of the fact that some don’t have anybody close to whom they can trust and rely on. Make use of a quitline expert. Their communication channels are open 24/7.
On the occasion that the cravings get worse or are triggered more often than not, consider the services of a reputable and registered counselor. Their advice could be critical in identifying the root cause of the triggers/ cravings.
2. Be active
This cannot be emphasized enough. Cravings are temporary urges but are quite strong. When the craving hits, switch your routine immediately. You can decide to start cleaning the dishes or listening to a new pop track. The point is to distract your body from the overwhelming urge to get a smoke.
To feel more relaxed, take continuous deep and slow breaths. Repeated deep inhalations and exhalations will serve to quiet the dissonance in your body.
3. Consider Nicotine Replacement Therapy
Due to years of continued smoking or other related factors, a craving might hit you quite hard. If you feel as though the craving is too difficult to deal with, consider the use of nicotine replacement therapy (NRT). You can use a combination of short-acting products such as vape pens, lozenges and gums and long-acting NRT products such as the nicotine patch.
4. Never relent
Don’t be quick to give in to the urge to puff some smoke. Remember your goal or motivation that started you on this path. Always have different craving management plans in place. In the occurrence that one doesn’t work, change it up until you find one that works for you.
For chronic smokers reading this article, it may be difficult for them to quit the habit after several months. The cravings will still hit you hard and you will start to question if you are making any progress. Because you are getting cravings, it means you are making considerable progress.
When the cravings hit you hard, consider the use of e-cigarettes or vapes. Vapes are kinder to your body and mind as they use lower nicotine levels. They are increasingly being used as a smoking cessation tool.
For the best vape products and devices at an affordable price, rely on the leading vape company in the market, Voom Labs. Our vape products are the finest in the industry and have undergone years of testing and research. Visit our online store today.
Read also; What are the 5 Stages to Quit Smoking?