So what is cold turkey?
Ever wonder where certain phrases come from? Quitting cold turkey has been in our modern language for a very long time and signifies when you give up something all at once. No tapering off, just BAM!, you are done. As far as quitting an addictive substance this has a specific meaning. Picture that cold, clammy and pale bird sitting on your counter top before it goes in the oven. This is what a withdrawing addict can look like in some cases when they give up drug “x” all of the sudden. I have not heard of any tobacco users looking like this after they quit dipping cold turkey, but there are some definite withdrawal symptoms.
Ready to quit dipping cold turkey?
So you are thinking about quitting tobacco and you naturally have some questions. One of the biggest issues that comes up is the – quit dipping cold turkey method versus a taper approach. Almost all ‘quit guides” include some support for using Nicotine Replacement Therapy (NRT). These guides will quote studies that say a person has a higher chance of quitting by using NRT versus quitting dip cold turkey…..please read on.
However, what we have seen in real world situations is the exact opposite. Think about it. All tapering down your tobacco use does is keep you addicted longer. If, and it is a BIG if, you successfully taper down to “x” mg of tobacco a day over the course of a couple weeks or months, then what is going to happen when you have a really crappy day or your cravings are stronger than usual. You are already using nicotine, so why not up the dosage a little bit. Sounds logical to me. Before you know it you will be inching your way up to your prior amount of nicotine usage in no time at all. The argument that it makes your withdrawal symptoms less doesn’t hold water, because (hold on because this is really hard to grasp) you are still using nicotine on a daily basis.
Lets consider what happens when you quit dipping cold turkey. Nicotine will only stay in your bloodstream for up to three days after you stop dipping. So in three days the only way that nicotine will show back up in your body is if you use again. Conversely, using NRT causes you to be in a constant state of withdrawal. It’s like death from a thousand paper-cuts. Does this sound logical to you? Why not rip this off like a band aid and get it over with? There is no easy way to stop using tobacco, so why not take the shortest route to freedom?
Which way is better?
I quit dipping cold turkey and so did the overwhelming majority of quitters that I know. In fact, many quitters I have spoken to have said that they have tried NRT in the past. The drug companies have got you figured out just like the tobacco companies do. You can get your nicotine through the patch, gums, lozenges, nasal spray and who the hell knows how else. The only thing NRT is good for is removing money from your wallet, and it is VERY good at doing that.
Caution – just because nicotine is out of your bloodstream after 3 days of not using nicotine does not mean that your cravings will be over. Just the opposite is true. 3 days after you quit dipping cold turkey, thousands upon thousands of nicotine receptors will be screaming for their “fix”. You will have withdrawal symptoms for quite some time. However, the good new is that after you quit dipping cold turkey you have set your path to recovery in high gear. The worst symptoms of withdrawal with be in the first two weeks. Every week after that will get easier and easier. Just focus on one day at a time. Get the support you need at www.livingdipfree.com. We are a free website and we are here to help you once you decide to quit dipping cold turkey.
Hope to see you on the site soon!
This article is not intended to be used as medical advice. If you have medical concerns please contact your personal physician.