Will I always have cravings for nicotine after I quit?

Dr. Jeanne Morrison, PhD
Family Practitioner

You won't always have intense cravings for nicotine after you quit smoking. The severity of your withdrawal symptoms depends on how long and often you smoked. Nicotine addiction is said to be as powerful as addictions to alcohol, cocaine and heroin. When you first quit, the craving for nicotine will feel strong for about three months. The longer you stay away from cigarettes, the fewer cravings you'll experience.

Avoid the triggers that make you want to smoke, such as drinking alcohol, while you are adjusting to life as a nonsmoker. Also, talk to your doctor about using medication and, possibly, nicotine replacement therapy in the first several months after you quit to help reduce your cravings.

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Important: This content reflects information from various individuals and organizations and may offer alternative or opposing points of view. It should not be used for medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. As always, you should consult with your healthcare provider about your specific health needs.