I copied this in the early days of my quit and thought it might be helpful to the newbies on the site. The document was noted as written by Nancy Smith.
Nicotine's chemical properties are addictive. If you take that nicotine away from your body, it will miss it and you will experience physical and mental withdrawal symptoms.
These symptoms surface after three-five days of quitting smoking and linger for approximately two weeks. We list out some of these symptoms to help you prepare for these side-effects to smoking cessation. Rest assured that these symptoms, while some are unpleasant, will only be transitory and once you're rid of them, will leave you feeling much better after quitting smoking.
Depression: You may feel low, sad and hopeless. Hence, it is important to surround yourself with people, preferably non smokers and friends who support your decision to quit smoking.
Anger: Emotional upheaval can make you angry. Others may not be aware of it, but you know what's happening to your body. The age-old remedy of counting to10 isn't such a bad idea. Stop, think, regain your calm and composure before losing your cool.
Boredom: You may have noticed that when you were bored, tired or depressed you tend to smoke. Now that you are on your way to a smoke free life replace these voids with hobbies or get involved with people around you. Pay more attention to your loved ones.
Loneliness: Withdrawal of smoking can make you feel lonely, impatient and irritable. If your friends are busy, take up a dance class or cooking class. It is important to expect these feelings of loneliness, so stay prepared.
Mood swing: Tempers will flare and tantrums will increase. These are not exactly PMS symptoms. Nicotine was once your evil friend but now you have to bear with the loss of the addiction. This will throw your emotional reactions to daily happenings into a tizzy. Most quitters will need help with these mood swings. Replace the smoking placebo with something else. Invest in some great music and strong coffee, maybe?
Nicotine obstructs the flow of oxygen and nutrients to various parts of the body. Now that you have quit smoking, your body has to hit the reverse button to detox.
Bowel discomfort: It's time to change your diet and fitness once you quit smoking. Quitting smoking can cause cramps nausea, flatulence and constipation, therefore it is important to increase roughage and exercise your body.
Nasal and throat problems: When you stop smoking, your nose and throat will try to clear the mucous that has accumulated over the years. You may experience coughing, dry throat and mouth. Fluids are the key to clearing this process.
Increase in appetite: Craving for cigarettes can be confused with hunger cravings. The best way to stay healthy is to consume fluids and low calorie snacks.
Headaches: Lack of nicotine can lead to headaches, the way out of it is with massages, plenty of water and rest. Gently massage your temple, drink water, take a hot shower and take a deep breath.
Lack of sleep: You may experience insomnia after you quit smoking. Take a hot shower before you hit the sack, do breathing exercises too and most importantly avoid caffeine close to bed-time
Restlessness/lack of concentration: You feel like there is energy bursting in you; transfer this energy into something constructive. In these situations smokes would calm your nerves, but now switch off that thought and cultivate a new habit. You may feel you can't concentrate too; try listening to music or take a break from your routine life.
Weight gain: Increase in craving can lead to weight gain, especially if you indulge in unhealthy food. But don't be dejected, you can cut it out with exercise and the right diet.
Sweating and shaky hands and feet: You will feel that your hands and feet tremble. It is a passing phase that will stop. If you experience these withdrawals you know your body is simply shedding an addiction and leading you to a much healthier life.
Skin trouble: While quitting smoking is associated with healthier skin, the period of withdrawal will cause some skin trouble. Some people with sensitive skin might break out into a fresh acne case or suffer from some ulcers in the inner-cheeks, tongue and mouth. The reason is simply that your body is letting go of the toxins and leveling up.
Instead of losing motivation after reading these withdrawal symptoms, the one thought any quitter must focus on is this: The fact that your body is changing so much when quitting, simply showcases how much it is continuously changed and affected while you still smoke. Avoid poor health and dangerous diseases - stay quit!