Leave The Pack Behind!

December 2004


I have a known issue with panic attacks, and I recently
tried to quit smoking, and the anxiety interfered. I was
getting bad nausea and felt very disoriented.

How do i differentiate
legitimate nicotine withdrawl or anxiety that’s creating
the symptoms. When is the hardest part during the
quit… first three days, the second week (chemically speaking)?

Sharon’s Response

Dear LTPB Visitor:

Congratulations on trying to quit! I hope we can help you
succeed. Some people are more sensitive to drugs than others
and nicotine is a drug. It would seem that you may be one
of those people. Whenever someone has withdrawal symptoms
that are different or stronger than the average, I suggest
that person
check into the campus clinic. Why? Because the doctor you
see there should be able to help you with the symptom that
in your way of quitting. It may be that for a short while
you need to have a medication to alleviate the symptom for
a few
days. If that is all it takes to get off cigarettes, then
for sure you should do it!

To answer your question about how
long you are dealing with the chemical aspect of withdrawal,
it does depend on a persons
metabolism and some other factors. Generally, it is believed
that after 3 days nicotine has cleared your system. That
doesn’t mean withdrawal symptoms disappear as quickly
though. For example,
cravings can continue to occur for a long time, although
they become easier and easier to deal with.

Successful quitting often depends on good management of the
withdrawal symptoms. It puts you in control and that is what
you need. So, go ahead and ask for assistance at your campus
clinic. Best of luck!


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