Quit Smoking Using Nicotine Patches vs. Cold Turkey

A number of smokers attempt to give up smoking each year. Some attempt to quit smoking cold turkey and some will endeavor nicotine replacements and other stop smoking methods. This article is a review of two common give up smoking methods. It will demonstrate the main advantages of using the nicotine patch to quit smoking and the benefits of using cold turkey method. I have tried both, and this is what I discovered about each method.

Nicotine Patches vs. Cold Turkey

Fact: From 1964 to 2014, the proportion of adult smokers declined from 42.0% to 18.0%

Using Nicotine Patch vs. Cold Turkey to Quit Smoking

The nicotine patches can be bought at most drugstores and grocery stores and they come in many different brands and they may be found at a reasonable price. The patch is not hard to use and is positioned on your arm or any other suitable location for 24 hours. It also comes in three steps. The first step offers the highest amount of nicotine, the next step has middle amount and the last step has got the least amount of nicotine. After three months of usage you’ll be able to stop smoking while using the patches and become totally nicotine free.

Cold turkey as a stop smoking method has been used for many years with good results. Good thing about it is it doesn’t cost anything and puts a total stop to your nicotine use. This method is best used with a support system of those rough patches. When going cold turkey it will take around 72 hours for the nicotine to completely leave your body. You should get plenty of fluids to help accelerate this process. Cold turkey performs best and works for many people year after year.

My Nicotine Patches Experience

My desire to quit smoking with each method has end up with different results. First time I attempted quitting smoking, I used the nicotine patch. I wake up one morning and rather than smoking a cigarette put a patch on. This kept me from smoking all day long, since it can be dangerous to smoke a cigarette while wearing the patch. Each morning I would wake up and hang another patch on. I found the withdrawal symptoms would hit one or more times daily. The majority of the withdrawal symptoms occurred in the first month of using the patch. I wasn’t smoking for whole three months. I did relapse after I took off the patches and went back to smoking because of a stressful event. The patches will give you results while wearing them and I would recommend this as a stop smoking cigarettes option. 

My Cold Turkey Experience

My experience with cold turkey was decent. I had severe withdrawal symptoms for three days and spent most of the time in my home, away from outside stress. I started to feel far better once all nicotine was out of my system. After the first week, I felt great, and the withdrawal symptoms subsided. I had no urges to smoke and developed an distaste to the odor of tobacco smoke. I thought this is finally going to be the quitting attempt that worked. After a month of quitting cold turkey passed a stressful event occurred and I ended up smoking a cigarette. This one cigarette of course changed into full-time smoking again.

To sum it all up, both ways have great potential in aiding the smoker becomes a non smoker. What I found is basically that you must develop a method to deal with stress without cigarettes. Before quitting with either method be prepared for stressful event to arrive. Stressful events will occur and we smokers grab a cigarette when they do happen. So, be sure to have a great support system like a give up smoking group to help you quit, either cold turkey or using the rough patches.

Submitted by James, Falls Church, VA

Image: Surajit Soms

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