The Effects of Physical Withdrawal

Anxiety, Anger, Irritability, Impatience and Restlessness
These are normal temporary effects of physical withdrawal from nicotine. Our life long roller coaster cycles of rising and falling blood nicotine levels are now ending. Your mind is in the process of resuming control of the more than 200 neurochemicals that nicotine had directly and indirectly taken hostage, including select adrenaline, dopamine and serotonin pathways. In resuming control the brain is making sensitivity re-adjustments associated with mood, reward, stimulation and anxiety. In trying to protect your mind from the deadly pesticide nicotine it actually desensitized important neurochemical circuits by reducing receptor sites and diminishing the number of transporters.

If a nicotine user remains 100% nicotine free for just 72 hours they’ll likely begin to notice the underlying current of recovery anxieties easing off as their brain’s neurons begin bathing in nicotine-free oxygen rich blood serum and the brain’s sensitivity adjustments begin bearing fruit. Although our quickly healing body is now 100% nicotine free and most of the normal symptoms of adjustment have reached their peak, it will take 10 days to two weeks before our mind and body become fully accustomed to functioning with the absence of nicotine and many of the other 4,000+ chemicals present in each dip.

The early healing is rapid. Deep breathing with mind relaxation, together with a bit of physical activity, can help diminish anxieties. Adjustment of caffeine intake and limiting sugars can also have a calming effect. Acidic fruit juices, like cranberry, may help accelerate extraction of the blood’s remaining nicotine and decease the maximum of 72 hours required for the body to completely metabolize all nicotine.

There is a detailed cessation effects study by Marcia M. Ward, entitled “Self-reported abstinence effects in the first month after chewing cessation,” published in Addictive Behaviors, 26 (2001) at pages 311-327. Its findings are fascinating. For example, it may be difficult to believe but, on average, anxieties peak on day one (within 24 hours) and within two weeks return to almost pre-cessation levels. Regarding anxiety, be sure you understand why ex-Chewers only need half the amount of caffeine as Chewers. Irritability, often anxiety’s aftermath, seems to peak at about 48 hours while restlessness peaks at 72 hours. According to the study, both begin hovering back around pre-cessation levels within two weeks.

Anger apparently peaks for the average quitter at about 48 hours (day 2) and within 72 hours is beginning to return to almost pre-cessation levels. Amazingly, nicotine assumed command of the mind’s adrenaline circuitry and a small release was part of our high. When taking back control, anger and fear (fight or flight) are our means of releasing adrenaline. It isn’t unusual to find yourself intentionally attempting to induce adrenaline releases by promoting conflict or feeling fearful about permanently altering your mind’s sense of normal from “nicotine normal” back to “you.”

While awaiting re-sensitization, find ways to vent frustrations and release adrenaline that won’t cause needless hurt to family members, loved ones, friends or co-workers. Walk, run, vent into a pillow, find a punching bag, bend a piece of steel, or even bite your lip during early withdrawal if that’s what it takes. Discuss your feelings with family, friends or within your support system.

Following serious challenge, write yourself a loving letter that can be read a year from now that accurately describes what chemical withdrawal and early psychological recovery were like and why you were more than willing to endure it. The mind does not remember pain or the bad times. In fact, you memories of “Glory Week” will rapidly fade within just a few short weeks. Give yourself the present gift of future memory. It may be just the motivation you’ll need to avoid temptation tomorrow.

Occupy your time. Try enjoying your favorite activity, sport or hobby. Celebrate each hour of freedom. Keep a positive attitude and review your reasons for beginning this journey. If you need a break, briefly clear your mind of all negative thoughts and chatter by taking slow deep breaths while focusing exclusively upon your favorite person, place, or object. Don’t allow the seeds of false reasoning to fester and infect your logic or desire. Let intelligence serve as courage as you break free from years of slavery to the dictates of a chemical master.

Time Perception Distortion
Nicotine Chewers have long known that at times during early withdrawal time itself seems almost to stand still. The first two weeks can seem like some of the longest days of your entire life. A new 2003 study suggests that time perception distortion may possibly be a nicotine dependency recovery symptom experienced by all Chewers.

Although a subconsciously triggered crave episode will not last longer than three minutes, as you probably already know, those minutes can feel like hours. Whether dealing with a subconscious crave trigger or even consciously fixating on a thought of wanting to chew, be sure and look at a clock or watch so that you can gain honest perspective in helping correct your impaired perception of time.

All of us are capable of handling a few brief moments of anxiety – all of us – but we need help in gaining an accurate estimation of how long we’ve endured any challenge or this symptom may falsely paint recovery as being beyond our ability to handle. Don’t let time distortion deprive you of your dream of again comfortably embracing life as you.

When time distortion is combined with a destructive “big bite” recovery philosophy that insists upon measuring success in terms of quitting forever, it is often a recipe for relapse. Instead, adopt a ” one day at a time ” philosophy that sees and treats each challenge and each day of freedom and healing as the full and complete victory they reflect. What good is holding a victory party after you’re dead? Celebrate life and the victory your latest victory.

Inability to Concentrate or a Foggy Mind
The feeling that your concentration is not as good or that your mind now lives in a fog is experienced by almost two-thirds of recovering nicotine addicts to one degree or another. The return of our clearness of mind and concentration levels may seem gradual but within two weeks most begin experiencing concentration levels very close to those of never-Chewers.

Poor concentration, focus and thought can also be associated with low blood sugar. It’s important to understand that nicotine force-fed us stored fats and sugars with each new chew. It’s why so many of us could skip breakfast and/or lunch and yet not feel hungry. Chewing nicotine caused our brain to release adrenaline which in turn prepared us for the “fight or flight mode” by pumping stored fats and sugars into our blood stream (the bad artery clogging fats).

Once we stop putting nicotine into our body the adrenaline fat feedings end. If you continue to attempt skipping meals, your blood sugar will plummet along with your concentration, as nicotine is no longer your spoon. It isn’t necessary to eat more food but only to spread your normal daily food intake out more evenly over your entire day. Women would be well advised to put a very small amount of fuel into their stomach about every three hours and men at least every five. During only the first 72 hours (as it can be fattening) natural fruit juices (cranberry is excellent) will not only aid with helping stabilize blood sugar but may actually help accelerate the rate at which nicotine metabolizes just a wee bit.

Even if you can’t correct the entire problem by stabilizing blood sugar and you’re forced to push yourself a bit more than normal in order to live up to your old expectations, concentration improvement appears to be fairly steady and relief won’t be long in coming. You may also want to temporarily reduce or avoid alcohol use, which reduces brain oxygen and obviously impairs concentration. Brisk walks or other physical exercise and slow deep breathing will deliver additional focus giving oxygen to your mind. Remember, life-giving oxygen is a far healthier brain stimulant than any addictive substance. Trust in you. It’s only temporary.

Flash – a May 2002 medical study indicates that heavy nicotine use may actually destroy brain cells and diminish concentration and memory. If true, the very temporary concentration effects associated with adjusting to the absence of nicotine might better be seen as a very welcome occurrence.

Feeling Tired or Fatigued
Our body is shedding the effects of being under years of dependence upon a powerful stimulant and the process of withdrawal and readjustment can be physically and emotionally exhausting. We’re also experiencing changes in basic metabolism as heart rate and respiration have rapidly returned to normal. Time distortion, awaiting that next crave episode, using anger or fear to try and generate adrenaline that we sense is missing, possible sleep disruption, it isn’t at all unusual to feel a bit drained during the first few days but after that you should begin feeling much better with more energy than you may have felt in years.

Just as recovering from any other illness, the body and mind need time to heal. Moderate exercise can act as a natural pick-me-up and also help us sleep better. We need to allow ourselves additional rest, extended sleep or even a nap. “Glory Week” can consume tremendous energy.

It is not normal to continue feeling tired or fatigued three weeks after starting your journey and there are many potential causes ranging from improper diet, blood sugar problems, medications in need of possible adjustment after ending the use of the 4,000+ chemicals present in tobacco chew (including nicotine), an underlying condition that was being masked and hidden by those same 4,000 chemicals, or by other coincidental conditions that just happened to occur and have nothing whatsoever to do with ending tobacco or nicotine use. Also, see depression below.

Trouble Sleeping or Insomnia
Nicotine is a powerful drug that affects subconscious thought, brain waves, the depth of sleep, and can even affect dreams. The disturbance of “normal” sleep patterns can occur during physical withdrawal or new patterns may be established as you return to your body’s true level of need. You may find that you don’t need nearly as much sleep as you did while chewing. Are you still tired or just sleeping less?

It’s important to understand that nicotine Chewers need twice the amount of caffeine in order to achieve the same effect as a non-Chewer. Nicotine indirectly causes caffeine to metabolize (to be depleted) at a rate twice that of non-Chewers. If you’re a heavy caffeine user who attempts to continue using caffeine at the same amount as you did while using nicotine, you may find yourself not only having difficulty sleeping but probably climbing every wall in sight. Here’s a Freedom message thread discussing the issue in far more depth.

Relaxation through mind clearing and slow deliberate breathing can help induce sleep. Mental relaxation can be as simple as slowly clearing your mind of all other thoughts by focusing exclusively on a single object or color. If your sleep continues to be disrupted and is affecting your health, safety or performance then turn to your physician or pharmacist for assistance. Don’t allow sleep to be your mind’s junkie excuse to destroy your quest to meet and become comfortable as “you” again.

Slight Sore Throat
Years and years of chewing while ingesting hundreds and hundreds of chemicals (every twenty to thirty minutes) has irritated our throat, damaged or destroyed millions of cells, has deeply marinated tissues in tobacco, and has caused them to become numbed to the tremendous harm being inflicted. As our tissues begin to heal, they may feel temporarily irritated as the cells slowly renew, our tissues begin to breathe and natural moisture levels gradually return. Cool liquids and juices may provide a bit of soothing. Hard sugarless candy or cough-drops may also generate moisture, provide soothing or give relief from minor discomfort.

Bad breath, Nasty Tastes and Bleeding Gums
Picturing the slow healing of deeply marinated gum, cheek and tongue tissues impregnated by years of thousands of passing chemicals may be more accurate than you think. Depending on how long we chewed it could take some time for these tastes and odors to totally dissipate. Cell healing, time, oxygen rich blood, and fluids will keep mouth, nasal, throat and respiratory tissues on the road to maximum recovery. Brushing a bit more frequently and mouthwash should help control the odors that will continue to be released from both dead and recovering cells.

As for gum bleeding, it’s not unusual to be a bit overzealous and brush too much but also be aware that your gums are experiencing some rather amazing healing all on their own. Surprisingly, it is normal for an ex-Chewer’s gums to be more prone to bleeding during recovery, not less. Nicotine constricts blood vessels diminishing blood flow, which, according to a January 2003 study, may account for Chewers having thicker gum tissues. According to an April 2004 study, gingival (gum) blood flow rate was “significantly higher at 3 days” and within 5 days the liquid sticky plasma proteins normally released by healthy gums (gingival crevicular fluid) had significantly increased and within 2 weeks were comparable to those of non-Chewers. But if it takes a bit of bleeding to begin gradually reversing the risk of experiencing 220% greater tooth loss than a nonsocial then so be it. If concerned call your dentist.

Headaches
Changing brain oxygen and chemical levels, added anxiety or tension, possible temporary sleep disruption, increased caffeine levels, or diet changes can all result in headaches. According to the Ward “abstinence effects” study, 33% of Chewers reported having headaches immediately PRIOR to quitting. Interestingly, those reporting headaches peaked on day three (72 hours) at 44%, dropped to 17% on day seven, and had declined to a low of just 11% on day fourteen.

Relaxation, slow deep breathing, extra rest, mind clearing with thought focusing exercises, a warm bath or shower, or exercise may help relieve tension and often brings relief. Aspirin or other headache relievers are available but shouldn’t be taken on an empty stomach. If you are a fairly heavy caffeine drinker make sure you understand that ex-Chewers only need half as much caffeine as Chewers in order to get the same effect, otherwise your caffeine overdose may actually cause your headache.

Stomach Pain, Nausea, Constipation or Gas
Nausea was also examined in the Ward “abstinence effects” study. Again, although only averages, 16% of participants reported nausea on day one (as compared to 2% at pre-cessation baseline), 11% on day three, 16% on day seven, 9% at two weeks, and 4% on day twenty-eight. Cessation related constipation was the focus of a November 2003 study. It found that one in six quitters develop constipation and that for about one in eleven quitters the problem can be severe. The study also found that constipation levels peaked at about two weeks. If you develop constipation concerns during recovery consult your pharmacist or physician and obtain relief.

There are a host of digestive disorders, including cancers, associated with chewing. Intestinal and bowel movements can be temporarily affected while they adjust to the absence of nicotine. Stress, anxiety or postpartum nicotine depression can cause our stomach or GI area to generate pain. Tissues numbed and deadened by years of nicotine use are healing. It isn’t uncommon to experience temporary pain. We can aid the healing process by drinking at least eight glasses of water each day. Increasing the amount of leafy vegetables, roughage, whole grains, bran or prunes in our diet will aid our intestines in cleansing and in moving things along. Moderate exercise may also help with circulation and movement. If symptoms persist, we need to consult our physician.

© WhyQuit.Com 2000, 2013
The original article has been modified to be more relevant for dippers and chewers.

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160 Comments

  1. Hi Amitav,

    Could you please tell me if your experienced any roughness (sandpaper like feeling when touched with tongue) on the roof of the mouth (hard palate, behind front teeth) and burning sensation as well? I quit Rajnigandha about 2 months ago. went to many doctors but they cannot see anything wrong on the palate and they said it could be be physical withdrawal symptoms but I am not sure. Please reply…

  2. So I am currently on day 19 of my quit and everything is going well, but I keep clenching my jaw and it has started to hurt. It’s kind of a strange feeling. Is this normal?

    • Same here. My bite seems off and dentist says I’m grinding my teeth. Bad headaches too and I’m 2 months into quitting after chewing for 24 years.

      • I feel as though I am clenching my jaw quite a bit as well. Last night i chipped a tooth in my sleep. I am only 6 days nicotine free but I feel like this clenching/grinding my may be an issue..

  3. Can I just say thank you to all of you! I am a healthcare professional for 15 years in wellness and for 15 years I have smoked, quit then dipped for 7 years and FINALLY quit 6/19/2017. I swear with all my might I will never do this crap again! It is he’ll! Sore throat anger irritability headache fog confusion stomach cramps muscle aches gas bloating muscle cramps sores in mouth and tounge sore gums basically everything that can happen! But I have read all of your responses and comments every day and you all motivate more than you know! God bless you all and keep moving forward do not give up I will not either!

  4. I’m Tobacco Free. But I’m a huge ass hole now. Kicked the can in September 2016. Would have thought anxiety and mood swings would be gone by now. Use to be life of the party kind of guy… now I don’t wanna go any where or hang out with anyone. Thinking about getting a can tomorrow. Not liking the new me. Any advice???

    • Advice…

      If you think you’re an asshole now, how are you going to feel about yourself when you throw away nearly a year of freedom?

      Would you rather be “life of the party” guy or the “reason everyone is gathered to say their respects” guy?

      Seems pretty clear cut to me.

    • Don’t do it! Hang in there comrad. This to shall pass. In one year you can either be free from this or in slavery. Choose freedom! It’s actually easier in the long run.

  5. Did anyone still get fog and headaches a year after your quit? I’m a year and it feels like week one! I was a 30 year can a day cope guy. Thanks!

    • I chewed cans for 15 years and RedMan for probably 4…..gutted it for the majority of years. Called it quits finally December 2016 and still have some weird lingering symptoms. Disorientation, foggy brain, headaches and also feel like my personality has changed a bit. But Now that the cravings are gone, it’s a relief to be done chewing. Put the shit in the rear view mirror!

  6. I never read this any time before, I just read it all now and I wish I would have before

  7. Hey im shawn, i only dipped a couple years, ive been clean for a month, has anyone else had trouble pooping this far out or should i go to the doctor, ive gained about 6 pounds since i quit and i think it may be a problem but im not sure

  8. Hi guys, its 14 day of quitting. I got black spot on inner cheek where I used to put tobacco and also got some small lumps in that area near to it. Is it normal or do I have to worry about it.
    Also I get dizziness,nausea and sleepiness. How much time it will take to recover from all this symptoms. I feels carving but I take control over it makes my self busy on other activity. Its great feeling that I have made all this way.

    • If that spot doesn’t go away within two weeks than you must get it checked… Withdrawal symptoms may take one and a half month…

    • I have stopped Chewing Gutkha ( exactly Rajni Gandha and Tulshi) about 6.5 months back. No very happy as I am no more dependent on some thing…without which life becomes hell.

      From the beginning, I started taking a homeopathy medicine called R 77 which is a anti smoking drop.
      Initially I started taking 4 to 5 times a day. Now it has been reduced to once in a month.

      After 3rd month of quitting, some time I even had day dream of taking Gutkha in future for better enjoyment of life.

      Now, I almost forgotten that there is product called Gutkha.

  9. Hey, am eric am a 50 year old country boy who started dipping and chewing at the age of 5.I stopped cold turkey 12-4-16. How long can these withdrawal last,I figured after 45 years it would take awhile but how long is awhile.I fill a lot better but my body fill like I been beat up,lol,so how much longer or what can I do to make things better

    • You have consumed it for soo long that for you it might take 80 days to recover but if you try to keep yourself charged it will help you… It’s a mind game you play with your body…

  10. I am 45 years old. Started chewing pan masala with tobacco at the age of 18. I have come to Bangkok from India staying at a hotel room this is day three of quitting. As initial time particularly first 24hr is passed I am gaining more confidence . Now after getting the stain remove from teeth I can laugh and gel socially even with charming ladies.

    • I am stopped chewing Tobaco Pan Masala ( Rajni Gandha + Tulsi) from 10th October 2016. More then 5 months crossed. Initial 3 months has been pain full. Dreaming of taking Pan Masala again. But with some Homeo Pathy Treatment I am able to control. If you want support, please Email me

      • I m also in the process of quitting rajnigandha & Tulsi from past 30 hrs. Anxiety, anger, headache n body pain are on peak. Should I have stopped at once or gradually quitting would be better.

      • What type of pain you have i quit 3 month before but not recovered from it i have rib pain back pain chest throat tightness and left arm pain i chew rajni gandha, kamla pasand and safal khaini

  11. This is Matt. Started with Copenhagen at 13 and I am now 47. I’ve never been able to quit, ever. Ashamed to say it but I could very easily sleep with it in and basically chewed all of the time. I was a professional. Tomorrow, 12/14/16 will be 2 weeks without chew, without cheating. I am however using Nicorette gum (about 4-4mg/day). It has been hell. Headaches, anger, nightmares, lack of sleep, weight gain. What a wreck I feel! But I am motivated to continue as I have witnessed and understand now what this stuff was doing to me. I literally never heard of anyone having chew related mouth problems until it happened to me. Had the bottom of my tongue sliced off for biopsy. That hurt like hell and made me think about what I was doing with my life. Bless you all for your stories. I am inspired by all of you. I sure hope this lets up soon. Good luck to you all.

    • I started smoking at 24 under very stressful situation thinking it would help, it did temporarily. I quit smoking 2010 and started the 4mg gum, last week 9/11/17 I stopped the gum , the pains I feel in my stomach are scary it’s constant if this continues I going to the Doctors. I had no idea this would be so painful, I do not want do go back.

  12. Hi this is pran. me on day 20 .i quit tobacco because of one mucus cyst . I faced sudden sore throat ,Tingling in hand, constipation, mouth burn.
    All becomes normal but throat slightly pain sometime and becomes red inside . Please suggest me some treatments

  13. I started dipping as a pre-teen and never truly got the ‘habit’. I could only get a dip ever so often when the older guys gave it to me. As my parents strictly forbade tobacco in any form I had little access to it. I did remember the buzz of a dip and two months ago picked up a can and now it’s a bad addiction. I crave the stuff. My six year old has yet to see me dip and I don’t plan on him ever seeing me. That’s why (well, one reason) I am quitting now. However, even though it’s only been two going on three months I am finding it difficult to kick the habit. I only dip a can every two to three days but find the urge is overpowering when it hits. It seems such a small habit should be so easy and perhaps that’s where I am under estimating the addiction. I just need some advice. I threw it all out a couple of times only to give in and buy another can. I’ve got to STOP! I’ve got pretty good will power (at least stubbornness) but this is different. I’ve never been addicted to any thing like this. Any advise?!

    • Hi this is Matt. advise for you is don’t plan on going into any convenience stores for anything. buy your gas at the pump and don’t plan on entering anything but a grocery store for the next month and a half. just a suggestion. Good luck.

      • Best advice I’ve heard so far! Yeah screw circle K, 7 eleven, Quick Trip, all those nic pushers! I’m with you on that Bro!

    • I’m a dipper for 10 years on and off. Dipping a can a day (Skoal mint long cut). Getting out of control if you asked me. Starting to get body aches that make me feel like I’m 80. A guy I work with recommended a product called Grinds, its coffee in pouches, just like dip pouches but coffee. He says it helping him to quit. Even though it’s caffeine it might be a good alternate to help wing you off the real stuff. Good luck and stay strong!

  14. 6 weeks clean, throat just now started acting up and a white lump appeared on the inside of my throat, doc says I’m fine but still concerning

  15. So I’m 24 hours into quitting. It feels like fire is running through my veins…. but it feels good to feel something other than regret from jumping back into it. 10 years of Copenhagen long cut. I have two kids and my wife just found out she is pregnant and I promised myself the 3rd kid will never see me with a dip in.

    • Hey man, I feel you. I quit Sunday August 14th and last night was the worst. I woke up and stared to fee incredible nauseas, stomach pain, and started pukeing. My brain was in a total fog, got night sweats, hot, cold, chills. My brain is a roller coaster, the physical stuff is getting a little better today but I just feel wrecked. Chewed a can a day for 11 years. This nicotine shit is unreal. Sticking with the quit this time for sure. Never want to go through this again

    • Hangintherehangintherehanginthere. I too was on Copehagen forever. Quit once for a year then started back after just one dip. I had started using Grizzley and then quit again by using Nicotine gum, after staying on the gum for longer than the recommended time (time-table on package) I was now addicted to the gum…ugh. I started using Copenhagen long cut again to get off the gum. I am now 5 days without any nicotine and am feeling better. For me; exercise helps A LOT.
      My suggestion
      Quit cold turkey and HANG IN THERE
      DO NOT take “just one dip”
      Try not to use one form of nicotine to quit another form of nicotine
      Exercise helped me

    • I quit in July after buying 20 cans a week. Each week since I quit, I’ve had something new start. The first week it was bad heartburn at night. Weeks 2 through 6 my throat felt like it was being squeezed shut. Week 7 – 8 was bad headaches. Week 9 the heartburn came back worse than ever. Week 10 I had jaw pain, neck pain, fever, and throat tightness. I’ve also felt like a zombie and haven’t gotten anything done since I quit. I feel like I’ll make it through this once October and cooler weather gets here. It’s been a miserable summer.

      • Same thing I was feel..but after 4 month of quit, right now I’m still feeling some symptoms. Wrong part was I can take only 6hr sleep after that i’m automatically woke up..sometime feel restlessness..don’t know what is going on..can anyone help???

  16. Hi my name is Tom, I stopped dipping cold turkey for 2 weeks now, been dipping for 30 years, has anyone experienced any stomach pains? Been to the doctor and everything is fine, but the panic attacks, depression, comes and goes.

    • Yes I do. Stomach pains and puking last night. Sucked.

    • Same here. I’ve attempted quitting several times over the past 3 years. Each time I get really bad reflux and stomach pain, in addition to anxiety and fog. It sucks, but your brain plays weird games when it’s going through withdrawal.

      Hang in there man.

  17. How long will my jaw hurt? I haven’t chewed for almost 4 weeks and I’ve been to the dentist. He said everything looks good.

  18. Any news on the lump as well as your progress? I’m 23 in a similar situation

  19. let’s see, 8 weeks since I quit after close to 30 years. Insomnia was the worst, doc helped me with that…trazadone…brain fog still around. I can honestly say I don’t want a chew as long as I can sleep. Exercise and unlike article suggests, don’t take anything else away from your body until you are through the nicotine withdraw. Enjoy life and embrace it, prayer has been powerful for me…God is good

  20. It’s been two months since I’ve stopped chewing, but today feels like the 1st 48 hours.

  21. Sam, yes, irritability is a very normal reaction to quitting nicotine. Although, it takes only 3-4 days to physically lose dependence, unfortunately it may take many months to get over the mental aspect of quitting, which means some days of being annoyed or irritated… all normal. Maybe let those around you aware that you may be irritated, and to not take it personal when you do. Most people will recognize how hard it is to quit and they should understand. Good luck!

  22. I’m 20 and about a week ago I decided to quit dipping. I’ve been dipping since I was about 13 years old, about a can or so a day I would say. So far the anxiety and irritability is by far the worst part about quiting. It seems like anything and everything irritates me and I stay irritated for hours over something so little. Anyone else have anything similar?

  23. Hey yall. I just had a question, maybe someone give me reassurance or a peace of mind.. I am 22 years old, been dipping since I was around 17-18. Been doing about a can a day (give or take) for around 3-4 out of the 5 years. I quit dip cold turkey Jan 2, lasted a week and a day, went out to a country bar with buddies and drunkenly bought a can. Maybe had 3-4 rigs out of it. Woke up the next morning regretting it and threw it down the toilet. I was worried about the sore jaws, but reading it is a common symptom of withdrawal gave me some peace of mind…My biggest worry right now, however, is what feels like a small lump on the right side of my mouth. It hasn’t broken skin, and looks pretty much like the rest of the cheek in terms of color, maybe a TINY bit white if that. I also have slight ear aches that last for minutes but then go away, but I wouldnt consider them a true ear ache if that makes sense. Those have beeen around for months way before this lump even appeared. Anyone have any similar lumps that just went away? Needless to say, I am done done done. Fuck this crap, wish I never started. Just need some reassurance from fellow quitters or something, I dont know. Maybe its just the anxiety kicking in hard, it just freaks me out.

    • Also, the lump is really only noticable with my tongue, barely can feel it with your finger unless you squeeze or press down on it. Cant see it from the outside of my mouth either, just the inside

    • Quitting symptoms vary from one to one..i had chewing from 14years..Right now 33th day of quitting..my initial 2weeks were horrible.I badly feel pain in my lymph gland and sore painful throat..difficulty in speaking,ear ache, pain in jaw line & back of throat..but right now I feel only slight pain in throat that might be gone after few days..So relax, get busy yourself, do exercise & yoga that helps a lot..Visit a good physician

  24. I finally gave up chewing on Nov 1st after 20 years. I used the patch and put on my last one on Dec 20th. After 2 months I still have white streaks on both sides of my mouth where I chewed. It’s causing me to have a lot of anxiety. I know I need to go to the doctor, but in the meantime can anyone answer if this is common or should I keep worrying. Thanks

    • Stopped chewing recently went to the dentist and asked them about the white streaks as well, they said it was no big deal.

  25. Thank you much for those words about our lord…I believe God has got this….

  26. Fair enough, I appreciate the response and the advice, Jon! Maybe I’ll just slow it down a bunch until I designate that quit day.

    But as mentioned previously, I’ve never had more conviction to quit then now.

  27. Chris, a few tips that helped me stay quit after 3 months.
    1) Do not quit on a moment’s notice. Plan your quit day, for example, choose a specific day one to two weeks ahead of schedule, to allow time to mentally withdraw from the dip as you are using it for the final days! This will also allow you time to get mentally psyched up to handle the attack of withdrawal.
    2) Expect the worse when it comes to nicotine withdrawal symptoms. That way it won’t ever seem that bad.

  28. So today, December 24, 2015, I’ve decided to quit using smokeless tobacco.

    Threw away the 3/4 can of Grizzly I had and traded it in for some Smokey Mountain to hinder the oral fixation of having a dip in my mouth. The longest I’ve ever quit has been 2 weeks. But I’ve never felt more determined than now.

    Recently, I had a MASSIVE panic attack out of nowhere. This turned into health anxiety, which I basically have under control with some medication. That being said, I don’t want to always have to rely on medication to feel “normal” again. So I have started to sever ties with some vices in my life.

    2 hours down, forever to go! Wish me luck!

  29. 33 Years Old, started dipping when I was 19, and developed a 2 can a day habit with Copenhagen Long Cut the last 8-10 years. Unfortunately, Cope LC is one of the hardest smokeless tobacco brands on the market regarding nicotine to quit. This habit equated to 8 Packs of Cigarrettes a day. I had my last dip early October 2015 cold-turkey, and for the first month off tobacco/nicotine I used an herbal snuff (Smokey Mountain WIntergreen) I used this product for a month, until late November when I went off all assistance completely.
    I had tried to quit in years’ past, but had the realization this time around that there was no future ahead of me with dip. I couldn’t leave the house without my tin, self conscious of breath, disguised it by mumbling, $300+ a month to feed the addiction, spit can after spit can laying around house, chew in all crevases of my car and on my clothes, and for dozens of other reasons.

    If you all want to quit you have to be “all-in” in order to be successful. If not, you will always find an excuse to get back into it. Good luck to you all.

  30. Know what you mean about the jaw pain. I’m off Cope for 3, almost 4, weeks & the deep jaw & throat pain is there. Its not a debilitating pain, it comes & goes and seems to move around some. More of a worry than anything. I’ve chewed for 30 years & I’m feeling good without the nicotine ruling my life, but sometimes, every little pain makes me wonder if I didn’t wait too long.

  31. Why did I quit before the holidays? Oh, that’s right….because I already tried to quit every other month over the past 30 years! It has been 33 days and 13 hours since last dip and this site (and Chewie) is helping me make it another day. Good luck all.

  32. Do it!!!! In a 35 year Copenhagen long cut (aka the heroin of dip). Been clean for 40 hours and am actually hallucinating….. But I’m done with it!!!!! If it kills me at lease I won’t have a can circle on my funeral suit

  33. 4 Days in….Never went more than 10 hours in the last 36 years!! This sucks bad!!!!

  34. I am on 3 weeks of no dip but still getting bad pains in my jaw, horrible heart burn/acid reflux, my throat feels swollen and some headaches. This is tough but gotta stop the dip for good!!

  35. I’m on day 23 and my cravings are still terrible, I’ll be 36 in a month started dipping when I was 12 can and a half a day, quite cold turkey and I still feel the cravings.

    • Keep going, Jason! In 15 days I’ll be dip free for 1 year. It’s not easy, but you can do it. Try to stay away from your triggers as much as you can at least for a while (other dippers, sporting events – which was mine, etc.) The cravings will get better. You can do it!

  36. hey Y’all I’m 42 days in to my challenge. I dipped for 22 years of my 39 year life. I have fought the urge to go back and give up all my progress, more the last week, than any time so far. I’m cold turkinging this thing. Any idea how long this will last.

    • Congrats on you choice to quit Matthew. I’m in a very similar boat, 44 yrs old, 1st dip when I was 10. I’m over 200 days nicotine free. The good news? It will get better & the urges do decrease. Get fake dip, seeds, candy, drink water, stay active, don’t swap for cigarettes. Whatever gets you through the day as long is it’s nicotine free. The bad news, at least for me, the urge to dip hasn’t completely went away, but it’s manageable. Check in here to, let these other quitters help talk you off a ledge if you need help. Good Luck bro, you can do it.

    • I am 40.. Have dipped since i was 14.. For atleast 12-14 hrs a day, i had a dip in.. If i was eating or sleeping, i was dipping.. I have quit now for 21 days. The first 6-7 days were the tuffest. I was not nesecarily angry but had alot of adrenaline running through my body like i could choke someone out.. But theres really on one way to quit cold turkey, and i have tried it all… Ask the Lord Jesus Christ to help you get through the difficult time, and you will conquer it no problem… Now , ive got to talk to him about helping me quit eating… Lol.. Good luck

  37. Great to learn people committed to live a better life free of deadly nicotine. I am in my day 3 (> 60 hrs) and have never been nicotine free as far as I can remember (been over 20 years now). Just want to say one thing to all who are really willing to kick nicotine out of there windows “When the going gets tough, the tough gets going”. Live life as a celebration and not as a slave.

    • Good info. I am 59 hours into nicotine free. I have not been one day free of nicotine for 29 years. Everything I read is spot on for me. Very Very tough but worth it!!

  38. Abhijeet kishan

    Hello friends
    proud to be tobacco free
    I was very heavy addicted of gutkha
    one fine day I stopped chewing gutkha in one shot.
    I haven’t chew gutkha since 16th may. In initial days my conditions was just like mad
    but gradually conditions improving. After 8 week still I am facing foggy mind problem
    but I am determined that I will never chew any product of tobacco again.

    Only determination is the key for quitting tobacco.

  39. Than you so much for this graet Article.
    Hello guys i’ve been eating for 20 years i atea bit more dangerous dip called “gutkha” i quit eating it once in year 2008 but i became addicted to smoking, i found smoking far more dangerous than dipping so i tried quitting last year 15th August 2014 but then again i started eating gutkha, but today 9th july 2015 i am tabacco free for three weeks, And feel newborn happy younger… People first 72 hours is very painfull but after 10 days its all so easy…. My trick was cutdown my doeses i had been cutting down from january this year but i succeeded, and i wish all of you to quit this poison…

  40. Been dip free for about 4 weeks now, I dipped Grizzly pouches every day for about 5 years. Still feeling the withdrawal symptoms, the fog sucks and my body feels weak and aches. I already have a stressful job so the added anxiety from withdrawal is making this extremely tough. I think the worst part however, is the insomnia, haven’t had a good nights sleep in weeks, which I believe is making the fog and body symptoms even worse. Been chugging water and trying to sweat everyday but still not feeling 100%. I was only on it for 5 years and only did pouches 1-2 times per day, is it normal to still be feeling the symptoms? Does anyone have any tips for getting over the insomnia?

  41. Well if all of you can do it at least I know it’s possible. I will keep you updated

  42. I have chewed and dipped since I was 10 or so. I’m 30 now and can’t get past the first 12 hours. I start feeling better breathing better. Some chest pains subside a little. I breathe a little easier and things start going downhill as the day/night progresses. The amount of anger I get is absolutely uncontrollable. Its like super anxiety restless anger hot flashes all rolled in together. The idea of me quitting is just that. An idea. I’m thinking of trying bacc off or something similar but the amount of anger with no nicotine is pathetic. Any helpful ideas solutions other than just dropping the can and calling it quits would be welcomed.

    • Whipped – welcome! If you haven’t yet, I’d urge you to join our forums at http://forum.killthecan.org/ – its the best place on the web to get support and questions answered from people who “get it” because we’ve all been there before. Coming up on 24,000 members!

    • It’s been three days for me going on four but I understand what your pain is I have some major with draws but I’ve just stayed focused on my goal I’m not trying to offend you but I believe in God and the bible I’m a Christian and since I gave my life to him and gave him my problems it’s a lot easier to reach my goals so what I’m saying if you want to quite and not struggle as bad ask God for help it works for me it might work for you can’t hurt to try

      • I have recently quit for the second time. Dipped Kodiak Heavily for 26 years. Have had really bad anxiety attacks, chest pain, trouble breathing, gastro problems, you name it. This is BY FAR the hardest thing I have ever had to deal with and I consider myself a pretty tough person, physically and mentally. Prayer has greatly helped me as well as a supportive family. I pray that you all have the strength to quit. Romans 12:12 helped me a lot.

    • I completely understand I’m currently quitting tobacco. I am 59 hours tobacco free. I know now that not quitting is a sign of weakness I recommend two things to aid you in quitting. The first is go buy the tobacco free (Smokey mountain) herbal chewing tobacco. They sell it at WalMart. The last thing is while you are quitting just keep thinking about when “not if” you loose half if not all of your face if you choose to keep on chewing. It will happen so there is only one option and that is to quit for good and no looking back.

    • I was chewing a can a day of grizzly long cut straight. Sometimes more, but never less. Been chewing for 16 years. What really worked for me was breaking down the nicotine levels in my body. Figure a can of chew has as much nicotine as 3 packs of cigarettes. So I bought the lowest milligram nicorete gum……think it’s 2 milligrams. Start with 5 pieces per day, then 4 the next day, 3, 2, and then 1. Slowly bringing your bodies nicotine level way down. The 2 milligram gum definitely helps with the craving and best part is that you chew it till it tingles, and you are told in the directions to pack between your lip and gums just like a chew. By the time you hit the day where you have no gum…..sun flower seeds, gum and candy help. But your body has been steadily denied nicotine to the point you won’t flip your lid. It helped my and I honestly tell people it was easy.

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