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I am sick after quitting smoking

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I quit smoking on March 10, 2007.  I feel as if I am really breathing for the first time.  I walk alot and have been inspired to start a walk/jog program.  IHowever, I am making little progress because I feel sick all the time.

I have a constant sore throat and my ears are popping all the time.  After a month of OTC medicine I went to the doctor.  Anitbiotics did nothing to help. Instead, it caused  naseau and stomach pains/indigestion. 

Have anyone else experienced this after quitting? I would appreciate any advice.  I am still happy to be smoke free even with all these ailments.


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Hey everyone...well done to all those of you who have quit.  I am currently using Champix, and my quit day was Day 10 which was now 7 days ago.  I have had a sore throat since about the 7th/8th day of using champix (so before i actually quit...but had cut down a lot) and i can't seem to shift it, and it has been over a week now. I used to suffer from tonsillitis years ago, which was a lot sorer, and this sore throat seems a bit milder.  i am also now getting a cold (and hoping its not swine flu!)

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HI EVREYONE ......I HAVE quit smoking in october of this year 2009 I been expericing sore thorat and ears i did have a ear infected last month got ear drops clerad up i am glad i guit smoking but this is driving me nuts you start thinking the worse of things please help

Hi, I just quit smoking on the 1st of November 2009 and I am having a terrible time with it also.  I have had a sore throat, fluid like feelings in my ears and the most  annoying part is the acne.  I cannot believe how bad it has been.  They appear on my face, above my ears in my hair line and along my hairline on my neck also.  I have them on my neck in front and also on my chest, shoulders and upper back.  I have not had acne like this in years since I was a teenager.  I feel also as though my whole body is in an itch.  I wonder how long these symptoms will last and if anyone else has this same issue.  Good Luck with keeping the smokes out of your life.  I know that besides all these side affects, I feel like I can finally breath again, not to mention I can actually smell through my nose again.  The odd stuffy nose now, but not everyday. 

Take Care


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Thanks for replying Donna, and yes I am so happy to have quit.  I wish that my husband would have as much will power as I.  He really needs to quit.  He is a diabetic and has poor health as it is.  But is such a stubborn man.  I do believe that it is the toxins comming out also, but it just sucks cuz my complexion is not so nice right now and forget about wearing anything that is even just slightly low on the neck line.  I feel almost as gross as I did when I smoked and smelled like crap.  Hopefully it will go away soon.  I am planning on going to the doctor soon to see if I can take some sort of detox to flush out the toxins a little sooner. 



i quit over two and a half years ago and am still having horrible withdrawl symptoms,i hav e had a constant cold since quitting,constant flem coming up,feel depressed and low and have absoloutely no energy or 'go' .i feel the people supposedly help with quitting are absouloutely useless and cluelless .


iwent to see them a few times and all they did was talk about the different drugs you can take when stopping-nothing was mentioned on the horrible after effects of stoppping or the fact theat they can last for years.also,what you most needd when stopping is to actyually talk through your feelings with other people-none of this was offered and i was made to feel a freak when i mentioned this need-the stop smoking people have got it totally wrong in their approach to quitting and i feel its a disgrace that the true physical and mental after affects of stopping smoking arent mentioned


i have been to the doctors on many occasions to have tests etc and they didnt seem to be able to understand either-the  depresion and lack of energy is the probably the worse side.i have no idea if and when thee symptoms will ever go away and feel that i probably wouldnt have quit if i would know this is how i'd feel.i have recently thought about smoking again as i feel anything would be better than feeling like this and quitting has actually made me worse and am  iller than if i kept smoking


anyone here  who has also felt the same?


anyone else

I quit two weeks ago with the help of a electronic cig.....Everything was ok the first week with the ecig. I had mild headaches and dizzy after vaping, but all was good and I didn't want a real cig...Everything changed after 7 days, I started getting sick, panic attacks, sweating, chest pain, feel like fainting, shortness of breath, lungs got real sore and hurt. I went to the doc and nothing was found after numerous tests. Doc said to lay off ecigs for a while to see if I felt better. I am feeling sooooooooooo bad. I know now that I can't use electronic cigs :('s a shame cause they took the edge off and I definately didn't want a real smoke....I am really struggling today and the symtons are unbearable....I have been smoking for 37 years, started when I was 14....I truly believe that since I started smoking so young, that my body cannot function normal without smokes? Any feedback? I can't stand this sick feeling and probably will buy a pack of cigs tomorrow so I can feel better again?

its very hard isnt it,all i can say is maybe give it another week or so.if you have to start again then try weaning yourself off gradually and do lots of exersise and eat well,but gradually and not exesivelly....everything in moderation includingh stopping smoking....maybe this would help

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I quit 2.5 mos ago after 40+ yrs.  After the initial "crazies" went away then health issues started to surface.... many mentioned here already... like acid reflux, headaches, various digestive issues, depression, anxiety, panic attacks, skin blemishes, etc, ad nauseum!

The folks at my "QUIT SMOKING HOTLINE"  had never heard of any of these post-smoking maladies (maybe they weren't suppose to talk about them! - OK, add paranoia to my list of symptoms).  Nice people, don't get me wrong, but I had no clue all these problems were going to surface and I found no one to talk to until I hit on this site....THANK YOU!

I'm going to try to begin detoxing the physical and massaging the mental.  I agree with many of you.... drink lots of water, increase your normal exercise program, eat well (the physical), and add meditation, yoga, or some other relaxation technique (the mental).  If I can get through this, I can do anything!!  Thanks for all your suggestions.

good luck rubysusie!!  any time you want to talk im here

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Like many contributors on this forum, I too am relieved to hear others have similar symptoms. But I ask you all not to panic. Here is my situation:

I am a 30 year old male in reasonable shape (exercise 3 times per week), who gave up smoking about 8 weeks ago. I had been smoking an average of 6 per day, for about 10 years, but always kept active in sports. I quit using the natural 'cold turkey' method, which worked very well for me. After about 4 - 5 days, the actual nicotine cravings disappeared... then it was just a case of getting my head in the right frame of mind to defeat those tough 'associations' one inevitably develops over time i.e. When having a beer, having a coffee, after a big meal etc.

I haven't looked back since and am already reaping the rewards, however since giving up, I have experienced the following symptoms:

- Within 2 weeks of quitting: a mild, productive cough producing brown/green phlegm.

- Then all fine for 3 weeks, until a nasty cough/cold, producing similar brown/green phlegm and damaged tissue. (Unusual I thought, given that I consider myself unlucky to get a cold twice a year, let alone twice within a month).

- Then no problems for a couple of weeks until now where I have a very sore throat, endless coughing up of the same stuff, this mucus in my nose and ear canal which has unsurprisingly lead to a nasty, sound distorting earache.

Am I enjoying these symptoms? No... Am I worried? NO!!

BECAUSE: I genuinely believe it is just the body cleansing itself. Of course the lungs are the primary organ that takes the main hit from smoking, but as you inhale the smoke, it also goes up into the back of your nose and into the ear canals. It is therefore totally feasible that these areas require a little longer to clear. Afterall, it is interesting, that most people on here who complain of similar symptoms, say that they happen some weeks after quitting - like with me.

I'm not a medical professional but because I have no actual 'fever' with these symptoms (apart from possibly a very mild temperature increase on the first day when they come on), that would - I'm guessing - rule out it being common cold/mild flu. Also, I think the point the nurse made is a valid one regarding becoming more susceptible to things in the air, such as pollen, free radicals. At work I sit under an aircon vent, and I had initially blamed that. However maybe for the first time, my respiratory system is having to get used to it without tar induced mucus on tap to 'protect' it?

So please don't lose hope. Despite the rubbish symptoms, I feel like superman with my new lungs. I'm sleeping deeper and easier, I can run further with less effort, walk the stairs without any tightness, the list goes on.

Oh and a final thought... to be honest, we have all abused our bodies for years with this crap so perhaps these symptoms - whilst very unpleasant - are an appropriate penance!



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My quit date was Feb 24,2010.  Which puts me at right about 8 weeks.  I am soo glad that i stumbled on this site.  I thought i was crazy but i am having the same symptoms.  I think Joequit says it best though... we have been abusing our bodies for many years and this is the price we are paying.  I have smoked for 20 years and truly did not ever believe i would feel this bad after quitting smoking.  I thought i would feel better!!!  Dizziness, stomach issues, ear pain, anxiety, massive panic attacks, aches..  the list goes on.  Everything I read said that i should be over the withdrawal symptoms in 3-4 days..  After reading everyones comments i would definitely say that is not true.  Its so discouraging because i see people driving their cars,sitting at break, etc.. with cigs hanging out of their mouths and they look extremely happy.  We have to remember that we probably didn't feel good when we smoked either but now we have something to blame it on.  Im just looking forward to the day when these symptoms go away and I can say that I am comfortable in my new skin.  At 8 weeks i am still not comfortable with giving up smoking even if i know it is the right thing to do!  I have to tell myself everyday that lung disease,cancer and strokes will be a lot worse than these withdrawal symptoms that will hopefully disappear in time.  Good luck to all of you!

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Hi There,

I quit December 27, 2009 with the help of Champix.  I am now off Champix, and have had sinus problems ever since, and I am exhausted all the time.  I still have no desire to smoke, so Champix got me through the worst (normal withdrawal symptoms, headaches etc)  I had absolutely no side effects other than constipation.  It was shocking.

I have been exercising, eating better, and I still am not moving any weight.  In saying this, it is bringing me down; and my sinuses are still no better.  I have never coughed up anything.  Maybe part of the withdrawal is a bit of depression and sinus trouble causing me not to lose any weight I have gained. 

I don't want to smoke again, and will cross my fingers that continues, but really hope I don't have to carry on feeling this terrible.

I am grateful to hear that what I am going through is seemingly normal, and here's hoping we all get through it and be healthy again.

Best to you all.


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I am a relatively healthy 20 year old male. I have been smoking on and off for 5 years, sometimes very seldom and other times smoking a lot, but it never hits the one pack a day mark, rarely half a pack.

In December 2008 I quit smoking cold turkey and lasted four and a half months. I started up again and smoked 1-8 cigarettes a day throughout 2009. I tried to quit again on 2010 new years day and only lasted 7 days.

Recently, for the past two months, I smoked quite heavily for my standards, and one night about two weeks ago smoked so much from anxiety that I felt really sick the next day, which made me quit for the third time on the 23rd April 2010.

It is now the 10th day of being smoke free. I feel no cravings whatsoever, however, over these ten days I have experienced illnesses that I really didn't expect.

Firstly, I rarely get sick and can't remember the last time I got sick. Just a day after going cold turkey, I experienced flu like symptoms with a non stop dry cough, severe tension headaches at the back of my head, anxiety, organ pain, lots of sweating especially during sleep, sore joints (knees especially, exacerbated due to standing nature of my job) and muscles, and mental/physical fatigue.

After those symptoms mostly subsided after a couple of days with only normal rest, I then began to develop a sore throat. I brushed it off as a minor ailment, but it got worse to the point of severe pain and difficulty swallowing. I did a lot of research and self examination and self diagnosed myself with tonsillitis. It was confirmed by a visit to the doctor the next day.

It is my fourth day of having tonsillitis, and it has only a week after quitting smoking. It is the first time I have had tonsillitis in my life. The pain has reached a level where it is very sore when doing nothing at all, and one can only imagine the excruciating pain (I cringe up bad everytime I swallow because it hurts that much) when you try to swallow even water, let alone food or soup. I also have earache/tinnitus in both ears, a temperature and big loss of appetite. Eating or drinking anything, including the popularly recommended ice cream, is torture. I have to drool because it hurts so much to swallow and I constantly spit up yellow phlegm, which is so painful to spit up. To give you an idea I'm on my fifth toilet roll using them as tissues.

I somehow think that going cold turkey after pumping so much nicotine in my system is the cause of getting so many different sick symptoms and now severe tonsillitis (possibly mononucleosis/glandular fever). What I am trying to do is think of a logical link.

It seems to be the case that when we quit smoking we become more susceptible to illnesses, usually ones that we haven't experienced before.

Anyway just thought I'd let you guys know what I've been through so far.

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I quit little over a month ago and a week after smoking my last cigarette I had my first food allergy and asthma flare up. Since then things have been so bad that I even suspected bed bugs or fleas even though there has not been any evidence to that effect. My mind wandered a million places till my sister suggested that i should google the relationship of my asthma and allergies to the fact that i recently quit smoking and voila I found these threds here. If anyone finds a cure for these newly acquired allergies please share here.

I highly recommend you guys check out - great group of people over there that know the realities of quitting and all of the after effects - including the ones that main stream health programs don't realize.

I quit 7 years ago after smoking more than a pack a day for 15 years. It can be done. It does get better. I LOVE not smoking!

Go check out quitnet and pull up a chair at the elder lodge and make yourself some socks and a crazy hat!!

I smoked since I was 16 and now I am 42 years old.  My habit became about a pack a day by the end.  I quit smoking 33 days ago because I was feeling really bad and had begun to have heart complications, and lack of sleep.  Since quitting I have been experiencing acid reflux symptoms, every time I eat I cannot not lay down.  I had a three day insomnia fest where I could not sleep at all and my heart keep beating rapidly.  I have had a panic attack every day since, but they are starting to be shorter and shorter.  I am gradually feeling a little better day by day.  I still have muscle aches, and a few pimples, but I am starting to look better.  My skin is shinier.  I have gained quite a few pounds because I am eating like a crazy person, but I am hopeful that things will get better.   Next week I will start working out, and hopefully I can shed some of these pounds and go back to a size 4.

It has been so good to read all of your stories because I thought I was crazy, and my husband just didnt seem to understand all of the symptoms I was and am going through.  Thank you for giving me an outlet to vent about this very complicated, but very necessary process.

all the complaints of yrs of symptoms would put folk off quitting smoking but remember this! if you decided or needed to quit in the future again! you'd have to do the symptoms twice long for G-d know's how long. best to stay quit. i smoked from age 11 or 12 to age 18 then quit until around age 27 or 28 "good break due to fitness incentive" and have took the advantage to quit again due to stomach ulcers, now age 36 i have no intention to smoke again. just visiting here because i have life long gerds and it's worsened with quitting slightly! but i read on a quitter website the gerds will disappear after quitting within 2 months and it sounded like an experienced or doctoral view. ps 90% of symptoms are psychological because the first time i quit "and cold turkey as well" i pictured myself to be fine after night 1 and only psychologically suffered that first night, i recall no symptoms at all only that i threw up the jam and margarine on toast immediately after bed "instant reflux symptom" which subsided in a day "lol that time".

I am new to this site and figured I would just gI've some of my symptoms because they have been scaring me and causing anxiety.

I quit smoking around 5 months ago using the patch nicodermCQ about 3 1/2 months ago I smoked some weed with friends (that's normal for me. And no I did not have laced weed.) About 4 mins  into being high I had a massive panic attack. Cold sweats, shaking, disoriented, but it subsided after some faith from a friend. The next day I was fine. I blamed it on being really high and wearing a patch. So I stopped using the patches and continued to quot cold turkey! This worked! I do not feel any sort of need for a cigarette at all. The only problem is now I deal with anxiety on a daily basis, had nose problems like much of you. Although I don't have any type of coughing of plhegm which kind of makes me nervous ha like okay well is it still caught in me? Then I think back and remember that my stool was black and brown like a half and half about 2 months ago. Someone told me when you sleep you could be swallowing it and it goes out your digestive system. Which is great and all but wouldn't it happen during the day as well? You see ladies and gentle mentioned I am the type of person who over thinks every posibility. I am only 24 years old and smoked since 17. Now currently I still feel dizziness once and a while, as well as I have a new glasses prescription so I could blame such on that. But I also have stomach discomfort followed by constipation and then the next day diareah, as if my body can't make up its mind. I get mild headaches that dont seem to go away after taking Tylenol, but the tylenol does help my dizziness. Lol am I a lolost cause or am I just suffering normal symptoms. This whole thing is causing serious anxiety. Doctors think I have sleep apnea but that's only due to me saying some symptoms to my ENT last week. And since then my symptoms have switched drastically. So how do I manage this? I'm going to my doctor tomorrow to have blood work dobe to be safe. Sometimes I get a sharplike  pain in my bottom left rib and it comes and goes. Almost like as if you ran the mile and breathe too heavy for a while.

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