What to Expect When You Stop Smoking

May last a few days to a week...

  • Coughing: This is your body's way of cleaning your lungs
  • Tightness in chest: As fresh air fills your lungs, they may feel tighter.
  • Mouth Sores: Your mouth has withstood years of hot smoke. You may experience this as your body begins to heal.
  • Dizziness: Your body is taking in more oxygen and blood flow is returning to normal. This may lead to temporary lightheadedness.
  • Cravings: You may have a strong desire to smoke or eat during the first few days after you quit.

May last a little longer...

  • Change in sleep: Your may have more energy as your body adjusts to not smoking.
  • Feeling irritable: Your body will begin to sense the loss of nicotine. This causes inner changes and some tension.
  • Lack of concentration: As your body withdraws from nicotine, you may experience an inability to focus.
  • Weight gain: Some people will gain weight after quitting.  Once your smoking is under control, you can work on the extra pounds.


Note: The intensity of these symptoms will vary from person to person. The above facts are provided as general guidelines. Call the NYS Smokers' Quitline for additional information and support.



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