Physical Recovery and Changes After Quitting Smoking – What to Expect

One of the best things about quitting smoking is just how quickly your body recovers from the ill effects of smoking. While it takes many years to completely recover, your body starts healing itself in just over a quarter of an hour. These are some of the things you can look forward to (and be wary of) in the coming days after stopping smoking.

About twenty minutes after quitting smoking, your blood pressure and heart rate are back to a normal level.

12 hours after stopping, your blood oxygen saturation has become normal, and nicotine levels in the bloodstream are a twenty of their levels as a smoker.

One day after quitting, you will start to feel the anxiety and withdrawal that comes with quitting smoking. You've made it this far, do not turn back!

Between two and three days from the last time you've smoked, your irritability will be at an all time high. You'll experience several cravings per day for cigarettes, but as time goes on their length and intensity decreases. It also becomes easier to breathe, as your lungs are healing.

After a week, you'll experience fewer symptoms of withdrawal. Past the three day mark, all withdrawal symptoms are mental, as your body as cleansed itself from the addictive properties of nicotine. Stick with it, because it only gets better from here!

After two weeks, you should not feel withdrawal any more. Urges to smoke will have dissipated, and you can relax knowing that you have taken control of your life again. In the coming few weeks, irritability, sleeplessness, and depression associated with smoking will subside and you'll be able to take in just how incredible it is to not be a smoker.

One year after quitting, you are at a massively reduced risk of coronary heart disease, about half that of a smoker. Over the next few years, the rest of your disease risks will return to those of a non-smoker.

The first month is the hardest, but if you stick to it you'll be rewarded in the end. Make sure that your family and friends know that you're quitting smoking and to expect you to be more irritable and anxious. The first two weeks after I quit, I was absolutely unbearable to be around, but it went away with time and I never look back and miss smoking.