You’re on day two of being cigarette-free. You may have had few symptoms of withdrawal yesterday, but now that the nicotine is exiting your system, you’re starting to experience more intense symptoms. Yesterday, you were able to get through the day with little trouble other than missing having a cigarette between your fingers. Because you’ve set a New Year’s resolution to quit smoking, you need to rely on others to help you through this harder second day.
Because the nicotine in your cigarettes has been slower leaving your body, you didn’t feel many physical symptoms on your first cigarette-free day. You may have thought that quitting wouldn’t be so hard after all and you went to bed feeling relatively good.
You may have had some trouble staying asleep during the first night after you smoked your final cigarette. According to the Lung Association of Saskatchewan, the drug nicotine has an effect on your brain wave functions. Your sleep patterns may begin to change and you could experience vivid dreams when you do sleep.
The psychological symptoms you may feel on this second day include mood swings and outbursts of anger. Admit to feeling angry, but try not to lose your temper. If you do, you’ll begin to feel increased cravings for a cigarette. Instead, express yourself regarding the situation that is inciting your anger. While you’re having these feelings, breathe deeply or go for a walk if you can.
You may begin to feel depressed or have feelings of despair. This is normal. Find someone to talk with who can help you see that you’re doing something good for your health.
You may begin to experience dizziness. Additional oxygen is now getting to your brain, which is making you feel dizzy. Try to go for a walk with someone, get outside and experience the fresh air and begin to change your positions slowly until this effect goes away. When you first quit smoking, you may begin to experience fatigue. The nicotine in cigarettes stimulated your brain and body. Begin exercising moderately on the morning after quitting smoking, drink plenty of water and don’t push yourself.
You may experience a sore throat and cold-like symptoms. Your body is physically purging itself of the poisons in cigarettes. Drink plenty of water and suck throat lozenges to help relieve the worst of your symptoms.
Your body is reacting to quitting smoking because it is getting rid of everything cigarettes pumped into it. For some people, the symptoms and reactions are intense and for others, they are more mild. Your body, brain and psyche are also withdrawing from the drug-like effects of nicotine.
If your symptoms are more intense, don’t give up. Find someone who will help support you through the toughest moments after you’ve quit smoking. Warn family, coworkers and friends that you’re quitting smoking so they know to expect you to be irritable and tense. You feel this way because, psychologically, you’ve come to depend on cigarettes as a crutch.
On this second day of being cigarette-free, keep in mind why you decided to quit smoking. If you chose New Year’s day to quit, making it your resolution, don’t give up. Make a list of the reasons you decided to quit and keep that list with you. Pull it out and read it when your resolve to quit is weak.