Stories & experiences

South Eastern Sydney

Smoker for 40 years now quit for 2 months

Posted in Quit experiences 28 Nov 2019

So I have been a smoker for 40 years, I have given up in the past but now I want to quit for good. My quit date was 4th October 2019 and I have been going strong ever since. I went and had a conversation with my GP and she suggested trying NRT - I actually thought that this would not work, but purchased some patches to try and was pleasantly surprised. I thought that the medication would be better for me, but on the other hand I hate taking tablets so went with the patches. First I tried them for 2 weeks, it was not easy as I still had cravings, so I added some gum and lozenges into the mix for times when I thought I was going to break. So far so good, I am really happy with my progress and wish that I had done this years ago. I feel so good about the money I am saving and socialising is now a breeze as I don't have to sneak off to have that ciggy. I have awesome friends who are a great support, so that really helps. I was feeling really good but, these last few days I am finding it difficult to breath and I am coughing like I am a smoker. Has anyone else experienced this? I was wondering whether it was due to the smoky atmosphere at the moment with all the fires and back burning going on, but have never been affected like this in the past. I have really enjoyed reading other's stories as it helps to know that I am not the only one doing this. I will in another month cut back the patches to a lower dose and will wean myself over time off them. Thanks for reading my story.

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  • Happiness November 28, 2019 | 12:31
    Congratulations on finally taking the initiative that we all put off far too long. Once done we will wonder what all the fuss was about. A craving really is just a though whether for nicotine itself or feeling at a loss without a cigarette in hand. Breaking the habit is harder than breaking the addiction. This forum can help you to overcome any negative doubts or hurdles. You are not alone and without support here as well as real friend support system. You are lucky to have that and I am sure their belief in you helps your belief in yourself.

    Given that you have quit for about seven weeks, your lungs may be thanking you and spewing up residue that smoking left behind. I was concerned that I did not go through that phase, but thankfully my lungs feel so much stronger when i cough that getting a cold won't be a major concern. Our lungs will recover over time. If you are really concerned about health issues, always see your doctor.

    I am glad you felt comfortable to address another member (I left you a comment there) and I hope you will continue to participate in the future. It seems that you are off to a great start, so keep on thinking positive because you really can do this!

    Stay safe, and stay smoke-free.
  • Lia November 28, 2019 | 23:15
    Hi Bickie. Hang in there. The sooner you bite the bullet and just go cold turkey, the sooner you may succeed. Replacements just prolong the agony. The sooner you face what you are striving for the sooner you will get there. Just my opinion. NR often results in so called quitters rewarding themselves and then ending up back where they started. Let us know how you feel about such advice. I hope you will return to this site and post your thoughts. In the meantime, enjoy your "pay rise".
  • Happiness November 29, 2019 | 4:33
    When you said about weaning yourself down to a lower patch, please just wean yourself off of the other aids. Right now you are loading up on nicotine, so hence should not be craving for is the acceptance of this journey and where you are going that cause that empty at a loss feeling and cravings. You will have these feelings for awhile unless you have fully embraced this journey. No doubts, no worries, no feelings that you miss it or are missing out, but fully and completely and wholeheartedly looking forward to life without cigarettes.
    Cravings are cravings regardless of the cause, nicotine withdrawal or psychological. Slowly stop the gum and lozenges etc before lowering the patch dose. I do give you credit for staying away from the inhaler which is too close to hand and mouth triggers. Once you are feeling totally confident and accepting of this new you, stop taking the nicotine in all forms. Nicotine withdrawal is over in about 72 hours as our bodies clear ourselves of its poisons and control.
    Every quit is different, at worse, you take the aid again. You know you. You are in control now, you decide.
  • Happiness November 29, 2019 | 4:41
    I think it was Softly40 who advised someone to write down their plan, then follow it. This way their is less emotion put into implementing it. You really are doing well Bickie and I think that if you are not having any cravings then it is because you really want to quit. However the goal is to be nicotine free as well, and face it, at some point you have to make that transition as well.
  • Bickie, South Eastern Sydney November 29, 2019 | 8:51
    Thanks for your comments everyone. In regards to the gum and lozenges I only have one a day, if that, there just my back up for when it all gets too much for me, and believe me when I say I have a lot going on at the moment that is raising my stress levels. My doctor said I can go down on the patches sooner if I wish, and after reading some of the comments I will do this. I guess she was assessing that I was a heavy smoker for a long time and that my gently weaning me off the NRT I would be more likely to be successful. Now I am wondering if I should of gone the Champix route as I see what you all mean by still having the nicotine in my system I have not given that away. I cant change now as she is writing scripts so I can get it a bit cheaper. I will keep plodding on and hope that I can reduce and quit it all in the near future. Thanks for you support.
  • TryingTK November 30, 2019 | 5:36
    Great job. In my eyes, as someone who’s just trying to string a few days together right now, you are doing phenomenal😊

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