What To Expect When You Quit Dipping

What To Expect When You Quit DippingSo you want to quit. And you would like to know what it’s like. We’re not going to pull any punches around here, it’s tough. That’s why we’re all here.

Days 1 through 3 – Pure hell. You will walk in the fog. Nothing will seem real. Your brain is wondering where the hell its fix is and it is going to punish you until you come up with it. 72 hours, that’s all you need to get the nicotine out of your system. This is where you start to deal with the physical withdrawal associated with quitting dip. Drink lots of water. Read, post, read and post. Don’t take your anger out on your loved ones. We always tell everyone………Make this quit about YOU. If you quit for your wife, girlfriend, boyfriend, kids, mommy or daddy, you will resent them during this period. Quit for yourself and come in here to rant. Yell at us. Bitch at us. We can take it. We’ve been there.

Days 4 through 20 – Here comes the mind games. The nicotine is out of your system now. You will still have some physical things to deal with.

  • Cravings
  • Irritability
  • Insomnia
  • Fatigue
  • Inability to Concentrate
  • Headache
  • Sore throat
  • Constipation, gas, stomach pain
  • Dry mouth
  • Sore tongue and/or gums

Yep, you have this to look forward to. Your brain is rewiring itself. It isn’t used to being in an oxygen rich environment. Your body is responding in kind. Everything is a mind game now. All the cravings you have are actually due to triggers. Triggers are events where you are in a situtation you would normally dip in. Mowing the grass, playing poker online, playing golf, working on the car………you get the picture. Keep drinking water, use seeds, the fake stuff, whatever you need to keep the dip out of your mouth. Remember, oral fixation is part of our habit, something you will eventually need to break. For now though, use all the tools you have.

Days 20 – 50 – You’re winning. Life isn’t great, but you probably had a couple of nights where you actually got some sleep. You might notice you’re going to bed earlier than you normally do. Not staying up to get in that last dip. You may notice some sores in your mouth. You’re thinking, “great, I quit dipping and now I have cancer.” You almost certainly don’t. Your mouth is healing itself. Tiny ulcers you’ve had for a long time are healing. We recommend you visit your dentist around the 30 day mark. Don’t be a pansy, just do it. He or she will be very supportive and they can explain the sores much better than we can. Don’t let your guard down. Don’t go out drinking with the fellas or the girls. We also recommend that you don’t drink for at least the first 50 days. Drinking is a huge trigger event and it weakens your resolve.

Days 50 – 70 – Cruise control. Life is really good. You still think about it, but this is good stuff here. Some people may suffer anxiety attacks during or a little before this stage. Some doctors say we dipped to relieve anxiety anyway. Some people can push right through this, others need a little help. Talk to your doctor before you quit or immediately after you quit. They will know what to do. Some give Wellbutrin or Lexapro. Lots of people in the support community take or have taken these medicines and can help you with the affects. Don’t wait till you get to this stage of the game to talk to a doctor. You’ll cruise through this stage much easier if you know how to take care of the anxiety or at least know it’s coming.

Days 70 – 90 – Late term craves, the doldrums, the blahs, the blues. Some people end up feeling like they are right back at day 1. The fog, the haze, the craves. It can be a tough time. You need to let people in your group know this is happening. Time to circle the wagons to get through it. It usually only lasts a few days. Fight through this and make sure your order your HOF Knife or Coin. Here are a couple of articles about this time period which we refer to as “The Funk”

Days 90 – HOF – Houston, resume the countdown. Enjoy the hell out of these last 10 days. You will be celebrating with your group as you all enter the HOF. It is a great feeling and an accomplishment you should not take lightly. Do something special for yourself and your family. They put up with your sorry ass for the last 90 days and they deserve something too.

100+ Days – Stay vigilant. Use the tools you have, to continue beating back any cravings or urges. You will still experience dip dreams and longings, but you are fully qualified to beat them down. Continue to post roll with your group. Get into the newer groups and help somebody out. Pass it along. Live the dream.

Looking for info after 100 days? Check out What To Expect – 100 Days and Beyond

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2,339 Comments

  1. Going on day three here and the cravings have been the easy part for me I have to say. Other then that my anxiety has been at an all time high thinking of health issues and getting mad at myself for letting this kick me for 6 years.

    A can of grizz every three days was my routine so I wasn’t as heavy as some on here. I will never let it control me again and I know it can only get better from here. I know anxiety usually gets a high at the 50 – 60 days but here I am at day 3 and I’m going crazy distracting me from work as well as just getting me down. Any ideas to help with this or has anyone felt like this before?

    I quit with you all today.

    • Normal Steve, this is what healing from nicotine feels like. It’s pure hell those first 3 days….the nicotine should all be out, or close to it. Next l, the mind games, again, totally normal.
      My best advice, pound the water, stay busy, through exercise, chores or a project. Go talk to a Doctor is you’re overly concerned. Listen to your body, it’s thanking you!
      Spend time here. There are alot of others joining you on the journey. There is also a wealth of knowledge from other Quitters and also on other threads/pages.
      I got myself some fake chew in the beginning, I pounded a can a day of that, just like I would the junk. Gum, Seeds….anything that prevents you from using the junk, do it.
      This all will pass, so long you refrain from using nicotine….i promise.
      Hang in there and Good Luck
      -JP
      2 years, 42 days free from that shit

    • I fell off the wagon today, and I had a pinch. I quit cold turkey last Saturday night. It’s been hell all weak. Using the fake mint stuff. But today, I fell for a bit. I desperately do want to quit but I sure did /do enjoy it. Just need to charge forward tho. Been dipping for years. Really want to get healthy and not freak out cuz of sores in my mouth. Smh

      • What happened? Why did you make a decision to go back to the thing you’re trying so hard to escape from? You were nearly a week quit. The nicotine was 100% out of your system. Now you’ve got to start over and go through those first couple of brutal days again. Learn from the fall… move forward and don’t look back. Take tobacco off the table as an option. You CAN do it.

  2. Keep your head up. Ive dipped for over 30+ years and Im 40. I tried quitting here and there. I thought the nicotine gum and fake chew would help. No I relapsed time after time.

    So i decided Im going all in cold turkey and Im 5 days in and to say i have had cravings but not as bad as i thought i would. Im done with tobacco–I will never dip again. Tired of the bad breathe and addiction that crap had over my life for a long long time.

    Get yourself hard candy, gum, keep yourself busy. You can kick that crap.

  3. I was a 2 can a day Skoal dipper. 37 days in and while I will say I do have cravings every now and then that is about it. Hasn’t made me feel bad or not sleep or be irritable. I took advantage of a 2 week vacation to Europe to quit, made it very easy as they don’t sell the stuff over there. Was having so much fun I didn’t even think about it until I got back home. Smooth sailing since.

    • the vacation advantage is nice…. I used the Flu advantage. When I was sick in May 2016 with the flu, I used that to help. 7 day head start… 85 days in and holding strong. Do I have the urge, yeah, but I am not weak and I won’t give in to use that cancer causing, gum rotting garbage ever again. I chew gum now and bite the shit out of my lips and tongue by accident. I feel my mouth has been thru a war. I just want to be free and live to see my girls grow up happy, healthy and successful. Stay strong… Live long….. do not ever give up…

  4. I’m reading the what to expect page
    and i’m definitely familiar with the first 30-45 days of withdrawal..tried multiple times…i’m currently 4 or 5 days into this one but am using patches
    does that mean I am essentially not starting any of these withdrawal stages based on the fact that there’s still nicotine in my system technically from the patch?

  5. Made it 3 days went back to it im going to man up and try again this site makes me think i can do this 3 days seems to be as far as i can get

  6. On day 3. Chewed a can and a half a day for 16 years. Like some of you, I thought I might not see my daughter grow up, so I realized it was time. I’ve been using Smokey Mountain herbal snuff, and I think it has helped replace the ritual.

    Now I’m having the irregular heart beats and mind glitches, so I guess that means the bad stuff is leaving.

    Ashamed I let something like this control my for so long.

    • Karl… day 6 for me…agree on the smokey mtn….and also have some bloating and irregular heart beats from time to time….i started feeling like it was bearable on day 4 ..tomorrow should be much better for ya

    • Don’t feel bad brother. I’m in the same boat

  7. I quit 9 days ago now. Can’t say i have it rough as some of you fellers out there. I chewed 2 tins of Kodiak wintergreen for about 18 years. I’m 38. All i have been dealing with is my mind trying to trick me into giving up. I went through a period of time where I would get pissed off real easy but that’s going away slowly. I still have a shorter fuse than when I was chewing. The urges are not as bad as they were in the first 4 days. It’s worse in the afternoons now. Fuck it, I’m not going back.

  8. Ok, so I decided to do it. Couldn’t look at my kids anymore without wondering how much longer would I get to see them grow up. 21 years of a can and a half a day. I am DYING right now. Last dip was yesterday morning. Anybody have a ringing and dullness in their ear? Entire jaw numb with soreness? Can’t sleep, but tired as hell. If this is day one then holy shit. It’s not until now that I realize how much of a coward I have been for letting something take absolute control over my life.

    • Jaw numbness and soreness. CHECK. Thought my jaw was going to damn near crawl off my face when I quit. Hang in there brother. Believe it or not, you’re right on track.

    • If you were dipping a can and a half a day for that long then you are in for a wild ride. I was a can a week and am just over a month and its been the worst days of my life. I have had anxiety, palpatations, stress, chest pain, sweating, fatigue, faint, memory loss but these are all normal. You have to fight through it. All those years of poison in your body isn’t good but your body is amazing and has to heal itself and it starts with your brain all the way down to your toes my man. I have done more research on this over the past month then a normal human would. I have been to emergency rooms thinking I was dying. I wasn’t I was perfectly healthy and so are you just stay strong. I found whenever I felt like losing my shit I would take a 30 min hot shower and lay down in it and it would relax me.

    • Hang tough buddy. I quit for the same reasons. I looked at my daughter and wandered if I would make it to her graduation. I was a can a day dipper and August 8th was one year clean of nicotine. I did it so I know anyone can. It’s tough as shit…..I would carry a picture of my daughter with me and when I wanted a dip I would pull it out and look at her. It’s a hell of a motivation.

    • If you can, run or exercise, take niacin, drink green tea like it’s going out of style and then run some more. Make your body so physically tired, it’s too tired to miss dip. Worked for me every time and knew friends that pushed through the first through days the same way. The endorphins will help, but mainly exhaust yourself.

    • I quit yesterday, and I’m experiencing the exact same thing.

    • I’ve had anxiety and no good sleep for 5 days. It sucks. I had a pouch today for about 2 hrs and realize I can do this. I don’t need this crap

  9. Tin a day for the last ten years. Day 4 off the Cope. I wish there was a place I could bash in the heads of baby seals. This is my life now.

  10. I can remember thinking that after 37 years of chewing Red Man . That I had 0(zero) chance of ever quitting . In fact I knew I was never gonna guit. I had tried , and it never lasted more then six hours. I mean everything else in the world was gonna happen, but me quitting Tobacco. I mean I loved it. I couldn’t quit, so I didn’t even think about it. Year after year, day after day
    Chew chew chew chew never thinking I ever had a chance in the world. To quit
    But then Tony Gwynn the Baseball player died.and I started to get worried . You know me being a former Pro player, and all that.
    It really started to hit me. The fact that I’m losing teeth one at a time. And I keep chewing and I can’t stop. I mean I literally can’t stop. But then my chance came, I know it was Heaven Sent . But I’ll take it.
    Two years ago this September , I came down with bronchitis . And my throat got so sore, I could not chew for 4 days and that’s when I stumbled on Killthecan.
    And thank God I did. This website got me thru the 6-8
    Months it takes to get the Beast out of you System . It was a struggle , but I wanted to do it for all the people that wrote in and got me thru it. It ain’t easy in fact the things you go thru. Make you realize that you can do it not only for yourself but for the people that come after you. My friends it I quit.
    Let me repeat that if I quit.
    One more time , if I quit. Anybody can quit .
    This may sound Corny , but I’m so happy for it that if you Chew or Smoke I’m gonna get down on my knees and Beg you to quit
    That’s how grateful I am to this website
    Please do it not for me but for you and everyone else. Each one teach one

  11. Hi I am currently on day 35 cold turkey. I dipped about a can to a can and a half a week. Copenhagen Mint. Let me tell you this is the hardest thing I have ever done in my life. I have been on the severe side of symptoms. I have had chest tightness/pain. Anxiety and hot flashes like I’m going to faint, irratibilty, depression. Everything you can possibly imagine I also gave up caffeine cold turkey at the same time so that probably doesn’t help lol. I am 30 years old and have been dipping on and off since I was 18. My symptoms have been so bad I have gone to the emergency room and undergone all heart tests possible, had blood work done I mean everything. It is all anxiety related and stress. I wish this on no one. I am staying strong though! I will not be beat. With all those years of putting poison in my body there is this price to pay and boy am I paying it. I wish everyone trying to quit the best of luck and if you need any help or pointers or someone to talk to to get you through It email me at hurley786@gmail.com. I have experienced it all.

    • I chewed about the same amount off and on or 25 years. I just quit last Thursday. It’s day 5 for me. I plan on following this site to quit. I purchased some 2mg gum and split the pieces into 1/3rds to gradually reduce the nicotine in my body. So, I’m chewing one piece of this gum a day total. I’m doing this with one pack of 10. A 30 day supply or more as I cut back to two. 1/3 doses a day week 2, a one 1/3 dose for the last 2 weeks.
      This isn’t going to be easy, but I’ve had someone close to me get diagnosed with stage 4 oral cancer. Half his jaw, lymph node, and many of his teeth had to be removed. And now he is fighting for his life.

  12. I’m 26 and I chewed pretty heavily for 8 years. I’m 72 hours in. Hardest tonight is sleep, I miss it already, but happy to finally be kicking the can! Waiting for my Grinds to come in the mail, those coffee pouches aren’t half bad. Stay strong boys.

  13. My quit day was Thursday, July 14th, right as I left the dentists office. Doc told me, “come back in a month and we will see if you need to have those sores biopsied.” Haven’t had a dip since and I go back to the dentist in two days. Sores have cleared so that’s a good sign. I have encountered heartburn, sleeplessness, and a bit of irritability. Oral fixation is a bitch. The struggle is real, boys.

  14. I am on day 4. I have dipped and smoked on and off for 15 years. Did any of you ever have red irritation on the inside of your cheeks or discomfort in your mouth. Not really burning or pain just uncomfortable.

    • Gary, EVERYTHING is “uncomfortable” when starting the quit. Nothing is normal, you’ll probably have other side effects than the sores or soreness in the mouth. Wouldn’t surprise me that you have a run with anxiety, depression, heart palpitations, weight gain, brain fog, over all weirdness, withdrawal, laziness, less sleep, again, weirdness, then….one day (for me, between 40-60 days), you”all have a half-assed normal day…then a few weeks, then you may feel shitty again, then things will feel normal again, for longer…then you’ll realize life without the junk is more normal than you once thought.
      In short, totally normal to be dealing with strange things. Go see a dentist if your worry (anxiety) is too much. Same with a doctor, they can help give you something to knock off off the edge…and will be happy you have decided to get free of nicotine.
      It takes a while, if it were easy, there would be no such thing as addiction, one day at a time my friend, good luck!
      -JP
      2 years and 25 days free

      • Hey dude I am on day 35, and did you have chest pain and palps and ever feel likg you were going to pass out and cold sweats?

        • Absolutely David. I felt weird as hell…cloudy, palps, paranoid. Luckily, if you want to call it that, I had a bout with Anxiety about 18 months before my quit. Never had anything happen like that to me before. I say Lucky, because when I quit, I was familiar with what those symptoms were, so the feelings I endured during those first 30-40 days, weren’t as alarming.
          Honesty, I thought my anxiety was returning during those first 30-40 days. I was researching quitting nicotine quite a bit and found that several people who cease nicotine, that is, quit cold turkey, DO experience anxiety. I also read that we as users, used nicotine to treat our anxiety, which stems from both worry and stress.
          I knew it was just the quit, not anxiety returning, after I read that and because it stopped between 60-70 days, then returned again for a very short time around 90 days, then was spotty after the 100 mark. Id say at about 150 days, I finally felt myself again. Yes, all of this symptoms point to anxiety IMO.
          If you get really worried or stressed (what anxiety needs to get started in the brain), I’d go see your doctor…or at least a doctor. He/she can prescribe you something to help you through. Personally, I did not do the prescription thing during this first 100 days, since I learned how to deal with anxiety without the Rx’s, after the initial bout. But there isn’t a dam thing wrong with getting some help (counselling, meds, relaxation, reading…whatever) if you’re all “amped-up”. I get that…so yes! To answer your questions, the long way, totally normal. Stay the course, and I promise, you’ll never have to go through this shit again. My favorite passage during those first 100 days…”This Too, Shall Pass”.
          Good Luck!
          -JP

          • JP thank you man! The feed back helps put my tensions at ease thank you for checking back and taking the time out of you’re day to answer my question. Tell me… what natural ways did you combat anxiety? Also I have seen my doctor who has prescribed me Xanax. I have taken it here and there when it gets bad but don’t want to continue to take it. What gets me is at this point in my quit I’m pretty good during the day but ill get palpatations here and there but for some reason around 6:30 7pm everyday I get like this fog/depression/anxiety feeling and it last a couple hours then goes away I also get tired. This all started after I quit dipping.

          • Dave, for me, it was 3 prong. Diet, Excercise and Relaxation. I also had the help of a wonderful book called “At last a life”. Had I read that when I first encountered anxiety, I would have never taken meds. It was very informative and offered explanations and techniques on how to cope. Will my way, work for all? I’m not certain. I do know, that once I had been offered an alternative way to look at my situation, it certainly helped me.
            I too tried Xanax, twice. A took a half pill one night, gave me horrible nightmares. I figured it was just my body adjusting. I took the other half and had the same results the following night….i said Hell to the NO and went back to the doctor for something else. I was on probably 4 different things for a few weeks at a time before the counselor suggested Zoloft. That one worked well for me, but after about 6 months, finding that gem of a book and taking on excersise and a better diet, I was able to cut ties with the prescriptions.
            Then I decided to quit dipping, lol!! Was a long couple years.
            Again, I have not a problem with prescriptions, I absolutely NEEDED that Zoloft back then, I was a f-ing mess. Once I got a handle on life, I told myself it was time to break free from the meds too. I still had my good and bad days, but eventually the good started to outnumber the bad, then the bad ones were far and few in-between.
            If I can point to one single thing that got me through the anxiety when I quit dipping, hands down, it was running and lifting weights. I did gain 20 lbs (that I have since lost), when I quit. It probably would have been 40 if I hadn’t exercised.
            My own advice, get out there and get to running and pushing the weights….it definitely knocked off the edge.
            You will feel like shit in the beginning, but I promise, sunny days are ahead, if you stay away from the nicotine….and you will no longer be an addict.
            Good Luck, reach out to people here, we all want you to succeed.
            -JP

  15. 1st day off this shit! Did anyone experience thumping gums with very much pressure? This is killing me!😢

  16. Day 10 in the books. Does the heartburn get any better? Mine has only worsened since quitting

    • Hey Matt,

      Day 57 here, I know exactly what you mean with the heartburn, this was probably the worst side effect early on for me. Mine was terrible like day 15 through day 35ish. Seemed like no amount of tums or pepto would do the trick. Keep fighting man as it will get better and eventually go away. I think the PH level is more or less balancing out again in your stomach/throat/ mouth, so tough through as it will get better.

    • only reason i came on was b/c of my heartburn..im on day 6…..anyone experience bloating …to point your stomach pops out big time a few times a day…thought it was food but its not…and ive been to dr. for full inspection….had stress test and echo cardio…all good…. gotta be related to the chew….

  17. Well i found going down to the truck stop and blowing a few truckers took care of the oral fixation thing and i made a few extra bucks win win

  18. Day 30 today….. Longest month ever. i am NEVER going through this again. Quit once in early 30’s for about 2 years and now at 55 quitting again. Lotsa sleepless nights but over the really tough withdrawals i think…. always helps to read about everyone else triumphs and struggles against the dip habit.

  19. Day 4.. was tough last night, but waking in morning still taste the contamination coming out in my mouth.

  20. Jeff, Jay gave you some great info. I also ordered up some cinnamon toothpicks on Ebay the other day, they are awesome. I’ve been quit since Feb 2015 & during the start of my quit, I ENGULFED Skittles. I was buying the big bags & would kill it in a few days. About 6 mos into my quit I knew I had to cut back on the Skittles, they are like crack to me. I now use Teaza, Hooch, Skittles (cut way back on them), seeds sometimes & toothpicks for the oral fixes I need. Try to find replacement for the food. Good luck buddy.

  21. Jeffrey Jennings

    My quit date was this past Monday July 25th. I will say I’m at the 72 hour mark, so according to what I’m reading I’m now rid of nicotine in my body. I will confess that all these years as a dipper my appetite was always non existent. For the most part, I could go a majority of the day without eating and it didn’t bother me. Now that I have quit I have a voracious appetite. In the 3 days I’ve quit I’ve gained 8 lbs. Is this normal? I’m not really fiending for nicotine, but I seem to be craving junk food all the time as if I just smoked pot. I know its only been 3 days but I don’t want to go from chances of oral and mouth cancer from dipping to liver and kidney failure from junk food binges and develop diabetes. I guess I was having a nicotine withdrawal yesterday and then I ate 3 brownies that had milky way pieces in it and I felt better. Then after eating 3 of them I was like what the fuck am I doing. For dinner I ate so much food I got that “Thanksgiving Day Food Hangover” the one where you feel miserable and you undue the button on your jeans, kick off your boots and lay fully stretched out in the recliner and crash out. Any feedback would be great.

    • Jeffrey Jennings

      This is a little more info. I can’t afford to gain more weight. I’m 6’2″ 310 lbs. Most of my weight came from high school and college when I played football and ate like a beast and lifted weights everyday. I know I’m doing the right thing by killing the can. I am trying to eat good things and make the right choices. I just ate 2 butterflies chicken breasts a full bowl of broccoli and drank 2 bottles of water. Yet I’m having hunger pains still. Like I said before when I dipped I was almost never hungry.

      • I am the same way. Get yourself into a gym, pronto. I quit for 2 years, then started again 2 years ago…after breaking the 20yr habit. I’m back on day ONE of no tobacco, and im already almost begging for a vending machine full of food. The best thing that happened to me was that I got out and starting running…then go invited to the YMCA. Thats my advice. Do that and at least you’re burning off some of the intake.

    • Jeff, what you outlined is totally “normal”. At least it was for me during my quit too. The reason you’re eating so much is really two part in my opinion. One, you’re used to having something in your mouth…a dip. Food is now what you’re using to satisfy that “need”. Two, your body is searching for nicotine. By putting sugar in there, it’s giving you something for your craving. I get it, I was eating the same way early in my quit.
      I would suggest finding something like sunflower seeds, gum or even the fake dips out here. I started really enjoying the seeds once I got used to them…it took a while. I’d stuff a cheek full of them…the work I put in, to crack the shell, spit it and eat the seed, seemed to take care of a lot of the oral fixation. I also tried almost every single fake dip listed on this site until I found one I liked. Now, just over 2 years free of the Tobacco, I still do take a fake dip here and there. I always have one around, In the event “I want a dip”. Just be sure you are only using the non-nicotine versions. Some offer nicotine in their products, refrain from using those ones. And I recently have stopped the seeds and use gum mostly just now…and that too is less and less.
      You will battle the oral thing for a while…the trick is finding a substitution, that isn’t only food. I gained 20lbs on my quit…carried it around with me up until last fall, I finally shaved off 25! Got tired of carrying it, now I’m where I was, slightly lower, than when I first quit.
      It’s been a journey for sure, but you can do it. Your story sounds a lot like mine. Wish I’d never started dipping, but all my teammates did it too. No excuses anymore, I’m done with it. The weight gained, was so worth it to be free from dependency.
      I’m sorry, getting off point, go get yourself something to occupy that fixation, that’s my advice. Seeds, Gum, Fake chew. You said you were an athlete, get back to the gym! I found running and lifting weights helped tremendously with the anxiety that came back around the 30-60 day period, and it probably also helped me only gain the 20 lbs, instead of 40!
      I wish you much luck on your journey. Use this site, it’s full of useful info for quitting and people will help if you reach out, I cannot stress that enough. Get into the forum discussions too. People want to help each other here, it’s a beautiful thing.
      Take care
      -JP
      2 years 13 days free

    • Weight gain is normal bro!

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