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Wednesday, October 1, 2014
Smoking and Tobacco
Nicotine withdrawal time frame
How long after quitting smoking does it take for the physical addiction (withdrawal) to nicotine to cease? In other words, when do cravings for cigarettes become purely mental (from habit) vs. physical addiction?
Nicotine has a short half-life of 30-60 minutes, so all nicotine is gone from the body within a day. However, physical withdrawal symptoms may persist for several weeks, probably reflecting the effects on the brain (e.g. EEG slowing, difficulty concentrating, irritability, sleep problems, and headache.
Jerry Friemoth, MD
College of Medicine
University of Cincinnati