ask: How long does it take for your body to heal/recover after smoking cigarettes?

 
Rate This

I quit smoking nearly 10 years ago after nearly 20 years of smoking almost a pack a day.

I read somewhere that it takes the body a very long time to "heal" itself after all that poison in the system which is a bit disappointing after all the work it takes to quit.

does anyone know if the body ever really recovers from a 20 year smoking habit? I was under 35 when I quit.

thank you

Add a Comment147 Comments

EmpowHER Guest
Anonymous

I gave up 4 months ago. I went cold turkey because it isnt quitting if you substitute it with something else. I had a real tough time giving up cannabis before I gave up the cigs. Everybody is different but that way it ended up pretty easy because I basically went through hell and back. It is a long story it started off with major pannick attacks. What I came on here for was to ask anyone thats off them a long time do you cough up black shit or do you just slowly heal as I do get mucas up but it is clear or white my lungs were or are clearly black as I was smoking almost 20 years heavily. Well done and fairplay everyone keep up the goodworkand so do what it takes to stop you are the only one who can help yourself. I thought a lot giving up stuff one thing I thought was I zoomed out of myself and thought I am a little person down there on earth craving something stupid that is disgusting and killing me and people it cannot go on and the craving went away think positive things every time you crave and eventually you only think not want. Im not out of the woods yet but almost goodluck

April 24, 2015 - 8:43pm
EmpowHER Guest
Anonymous

I recently had a "heart situation".. Day before yesterday I got home from a long trip. Was in south texas from central mississippi... Long story short. I was unwinding and working out after the car was unpacked. I dont smoke in the car so naturally when i got home. I smoked about 4 in an hour and ahalf. When i finished working out and was stretching.. Breathing... Bout to go shower. My heart started racing... And felt.. Strange. Like fluttery and fast.

My chest felt tight like i couldnt breathe
My throat was closing.
I felt weak and tired.
Disoriented a bit
My eyes felt.. "Wierd"
I also had muscle spasms in my arms and legs. Close to knees and elbows
Tightness in shoulders..
Jaw clenching

It kept going for about 20 minutes after the workout. Im starting to possibly go in panic mode here... And im thinking.. What did i do most recently to cause this and what could it be?

I considered diet, drinks ive had recently, environmental factors, family medical history, personal medical history, habits and other "trigger mechanisms".. Stress, etc..

Had just finished driving 8 hrs home.. Back from a journey into a foreign land Where i ate pretty heahealthily but didnt get mich quality sleep.. a high stress environment.. I smoked alot on this 5 day adventure. 2 packs a day easily.

Traveled to see my wifes grandma who was in the heart hospital fo r quadruple bypa s s suergery. She also smoked for years.. And still does..

It was one hell of a crazy time. Gps wouldnt work. Driving in houston with rain poring.. Passing accidents.. The whole time i wanted a cig while driving too.. I had a little snuff but that stuff is gross gross.

I took vitamins/supplements During the trip. Drank plenty of water, it was bottled and the date was back in mid 2014... Sometimes had a wierd taste.

I ate bananas.. Like Always do.

That morning i ate sausege, eggs, biscuit and crazy.. And a cup of coffee.. Not too strong.
Later in the drive. Stopped at taco belp. I had 2 Chicken things.. And some soda, mt dew..
Later i had approx 3/4 cup of dry roasted peanuts. Still drinking the bottled water as well.

Im trying to cut down on cig usage Too. Amd really i just want to quit. They are bbadi dont say good things about them. they cost money, yirr health, they stink, the pollute, and besides. Its not allowed in more and more places...

April 21, 2015 - 9:08pm
EmpowHER Guest
Anonymous

I am glad to hear that , I picked up a smoking Habit when I was 11 but I didn't fully start tell I was 13 making it an everyday got to have a pack or more habit . I smoke 1 - 3 packs a day. I can quit , but then when I go to work there is someone that makes me feel like crap for wanting to quit smoking because he don't buy his own cigarettes and I give him them . So he uses me for buying cigarettes and when I tell him I want to quit , he tells me " Well , A cigarette here and there is good but you smoke to much and just need to calm down". I am thinking if I calm down why don't I just fully quit , I want to quit . I look at my fingers and I notice a bend starting to form , and most people that have that is because they have a lack of oxygen. Also if I quit would I get that bend out of my finger nails . I wan't to quit . I just have these difficulties that get in my way . And when you try to quit , It seems like everyone wants you to smoke because they always ask you , If you want a cigarette . Sorry, I knew I went off topic but I was just wondering if anyone deals with that issue , or issues.

April 20, 2015 - 12:29pm
Susan Cody HERWriter Guide (reply to Anonymous)

Hi Anon

Ye, smoking can affect the nails due to oxygen deprivation. 

The heat from a cigarette harms and dries out the nails too. 

You need to get rid of your co-worker from your breaks. He is not your friend, he's using you. Smoking is expensive and it's a drug - you're not his unpaid dealer. Tell him to get lost. 

Anon, when I quit, I dealt with lots of co-workers (who were smokers) who took great pleasure in telling me I'd never make it. They said it to anyone who was quitting. Smokers are a funny lot - they hate when others quit. It makes them feel weak. I smiled at them and am still smoke-free. 

Be strong - you can do this! 

Susan

April 20, 2015 - 3:07pm
EmpowHER Guest
Anonymous

here is some news which is far more positive than most you read. After smoking about 1 1/2 packs a day since my mid-teens I quit smoking cold turkey 6 years ago. Immediately upon quitting I started going to the gym and playing tennis. I managed to maintain my weight and today play between 6 to 10 hours of singles tennis a week, and most often against players in their mid-thirties.
Contrary to what you often read about causing unrepairable damage to your lungs after smoking, I'm now 59 years of age and I believe that I'm am now in the best and most athletic condition of my entire life.

April 14, 2015 - 5:22am
EmpowHER Guest
Anonymous

If you have had trouble quitting smoking or are having trouble, I highly recommend reading Allen Carr's Easy Way to Stop Smoking. It is incredible, and I can't explain how it works, but it works. For the first time in my experience, quitting smoking hasn't only been easy, it has been enjoyable. Don't slap me - just read the book.

April 9, 2015 - 6:00pm
EmpowHER Guest
Anonymous

I smoked for 22 years, quit about a month before I turned 40. That was 10.5 years ago. Then I spent seven more years addicted to patches and gum--well at least my lungs were clear. The thing that helped me get nicotine free was learning how the drug worked, and why I was addicted. If I had it to do over again, I would NOT use a nicotine substitute. Study your addiction, learn your triggers, fight or avoid them accordingly. It only takes a month to beat it. It CAN be done. Love yourself.

February 15, 2015 - 10:01pm
EmpowHER Guest
Anonymous (reply to Anonymous)

I quit one year ago but I use 2 gum nicoreetee a day i think I want to quit this gum now but I have more cough in my lunge pls tell me what I do and tell me how long time u use gum and experience

April 21, 2015 - 4:02am
Susan Cody HERWriter Guide (reply to Anonymous)

Hi Anon

The coughing is likely due to your years of smoking but you need to get that cough see by a doctor. 

You also need to wean yourself off the gum, you really shouldn't be on it for a year. It's better than smoking though! See if you can slowly wean yourself off.

Good luck - you can do this! 

Susan

April 21, 2015 - 5:07am
EmpowHER Guest
Anonymous

I am christian converted from islam, saudi student studying and trying to make the united states new home!
I inhaled and smoked daily cigarets since 10-11 years old I just turned 20. I suffered from child abuse, but it made me stronger nd knowledgeable no complaining at all!
When I started freshman living in California campus dorms I quit for about one-two weeks then I felt I can handle this! So I though I could smoke one and only one cigaret by the end of the day. Because I wanted to smoke you see the reason I quit is that I don't want to live in the suffer of buying, thinking, smelling, tired, short of breath,ETC diseases nd life length not that important!!! After smoking once at midnight then sometimes I smoke two if I am having pressure then its three and so on.. When I quit I was using vaporizer, more than .6 mg WILL get you back to smoking at some point.. In conclusion at this moment I came to realize that if you want to quit damn cigarets you will but deep inside we don't... you have to go through the journey of ur self and learn how to rebuild what is broken....

February 15, 2015 - 3:37pm
Image CAPTCHA
Enter the characters shown in the image.
By submitting this form, you agree to EmpowHER's terms of service and privacy policy
Add a Comment

All user-generated information on this site is the opinion of its author only and is not a substitute for medical advice or treatment for any medical conditions. Members and guests are responsible for their own posts and the potential consequences of those posts detailed in our Terms of Service.

Addictions

Get Email Updates

Addictions Guide

Alison Beaver

Have a question? We're here to help. Ask the Community.

ASK

Health Newsletter

Receive the latest and greatest in women's health and wellness from EmpowHER - for free!

Improved

3363 Health

Changed

2070 Lives

Saved

1925 Lives
4 lives impacted in the last 24 hrs Learn More

Take Our Featured Health Poll

Do you smoke? :
View Results