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Fatigue and feeling detached

8 posts, 0 answered
  1. roxzee
    roxzee avatar
    2 posts
    30 Nov 2017
    18 Jan 2018
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    I am 18 days into my cold turkey quit after smoking for 25 years. I am sooooooo tired all the time. I am having trouble with focus at work. I’m gaining tons of weight and just dont see that I will feel better ever. I have little to no time for myself as I have 2 young kids. I feel as though these past 2 weeks have been for nothing cuz I still feel like a sac of crap. I have not sensed any benefit to quitting yet. I feel like have a 24/7 cold. Does this fog ever lift?
  2. treepeo
    treepeo avatar
    803 posts
    29 Nov 2017
    18 Jan 2018
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    Hi Roxzee,

    I quit cold turkey, too, so I can relate to a bit of what you are feeling.  I found that for the first month of my quit, I could fall asleep at night, but would wake up 2 or 3 times a night.  So every day, I got more and more tired.  And that made me weak mentally, and I felt discouraged like you do.  But for me, things got better after the first month.  I started sleeping through the night again without waking up, and as I got more rested, I felt a whole lot better.

    I know it's hard right now, Roxzee, but hang in there.  You have come this far, hold on a little longer.  Things will change for the better.  You just have to be patient.  Think about it.  You smoked for 25 years.  You can't expect to make a major change such as this without experiencing some side effects.  Everything you are feeling is normal.  But you have to give your mind and body time to adjust to living without the chemicals they were constantly bombarded with.

    You have 18 days under your belt, Roxzee.  Way to go!  Honestly, you are doing great, and I hope you will keep it up.  You will start to notice some benefits soon once your body adjusts.  And then you are going to feel sooo much better.  Truly.  

    Keep in touch.  I'm rooting for you!
  3. roxzee
    roxzee avatar
    2 posts
    30 Nov 2017
    19 Jan 2018 in reply to treepeo
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    Thank you for your support. You words are definitely encouraging. Yesterday was a super hard day for no reason. Today my mood is better but concentration still sux. Quitting smoking is nothing like the ads on tv. LOL I definitely don’t feel like jogging or doing yoga on a mountaintop  right now. Maybe one day I will. We shall see. Thanks again
  4. brieffree
    brieffree avatar
    1331 posts
    28 Nov 2017
    19 Jan 2018 in reply to roxzee
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    Hello roszee

    Welcome to help line, here you will find a lot support to quit! I think you are doing Great! 18 day's Free is a complete Victory.

    What you feel is a healing process, No more Smoke into your lungs.

    Everyday Not Smoke is a Celebration, your 2 little boys young kids will thank you a lot! You have a lot to win whit out smoke!

  5. sarah, quit coach
    sarah, quit coach avatar
    140 posts
    28 Nov 2017
    19 Jan 2018
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    Hello Roxzee - thank you so much for sharing how you are feeling, and yay! congrats on all your hard work. You have all these smoke-free days to look back on - be very very proud.
    What you are explaining - the fatigue, difficulty concentrating - are very common withdrawl symptoms. They are no fun at all, but so common as your body works hard to get well. And as Treepeo shared: this WILL get better. Make time for yourself - this is your quit, and its gonna take time. And when your day comes to do yoga on the mountaintop, we will celebrate you. But we will celebrate you, and every small change you make in the meantime too.
    All the best,
  6. acn2003
    acn2003 avatar
    1 posts
    03 May 2019
    03 May
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    I quit cold turkey and felt the same way for over 40 days.. 

    Did some research on it, and found that this is caused due to a chemical called acetylcholine that functions as a neurotransmitter in the brain and body.  

    This organic chemical can both speed up and slow down nerve signals.  

    Normally, nonsmokers are kept awake and alert by the brain’s release of acetylcholine.  The chemical also helps stabilize mood and maintain focus, earning it the nickname “memory neurotransmitter.”  

    It so happens that nicotine can “mimic” acetylcholine by binding to its receptors in the brain.  

    Portions of smokers’ brains “perceive” that they are receiving acetylcholine (when they are actually receiving nicotine) and thus maintain alertness and concentration.  

    As a result, the brain virtually stops producing acetylcholine.

    So when you quit cold turkey, you feel lazy, lethargic, sleepy the whole time when you are awake!

    Good news is, there is nothing to worry, it is completely ok, and you will be back to normal in 30 days time… utmost 45 days… 

    More physical exercise (like jogging, walking) and reducing the amount of coffee (anything caffeine) will help to get over this faster… 
  7. efram, quit coach
    efram, quit coach avatar
    142 posts
    29 Nov 2017
    06 May in reply to acn2003
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    Hi acn2003,

    Welcome to, and thank you for the well-researched post.  

    So, the good news is that this lethargic feeling is both normal and temporary as the brain works at getting back to normal.

    I also like to consider how a person's brain will likely function better after they quit due to increased oxygen flow. Just like every other organ of the body, the brain works best when our circulation isn't impeded by the carbon monoxide from cigarettes.

  8. merline, quit coach
    merline, quit coach avatar
    86 posts
    12 Sep 2018
    03 Jun in reply to roxzee
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    Hello Roxzee,

    Thank you so much for sharing to us how you were feeling after quitting 18 days cold turkey and according to what you told us I understood that things were not easy for you.

    Are you feeling better now?

    Fatigue, difficulty concentrating - are very common withdrawal symptoms after quitting. Withdrawal usually starts a few hours after you quit and may peak in 2 or 3 days. You should begin to feel better after that. Some people get through it quickly, while for others it can take longer. It may feel bad, but it is seldom dangerous. Remember, most symptoms will go away in a while.

    1) Fatigue
    Quitting can cause fatigue because nicotine is a stimulant. 
    Fatigue will lessen over 2-4 weeks.
    Take frequent naps.
    For some people exercise helps.

    2) Difficulty concentrating or feeling spaced out
    Ease your workload for a while.
    Say to yourself "This will improve over time. I'll be OK."
    Take some extra caution in the things you do.  Most ex-smokers say that concentration returns after a few weeks.

    Don’t forget to make time for yourself because you work hard to stay smoke free and we will celebrate you, and every small change you make in your day.

    I'm looking forward to hearing about your success with it!

    You can do it!

8 posts, 0 answered