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Cold Turkey

Cold TurkeyRating: ½☆☆☆☆Why only half a star for cold turkey? You should be asking “why so much?”  Cold turkey is only successful 3% of the time.

The only reason it gets half a star is because it is free. But even that isn’t free, for if you do fail, you have the costs of continuing to smoke, which as we all know is very costly, both in expenses and health.


  • Free


  • Low success rate

  • Very stressful

39 Responses to “Cold Turkey”

  1. comment number 1 by: Clay Franklin

    I quite cold turkey 19 days ago.
    It is really difficult.
    I have not replaced smoking with eating or chewing gum or anything else.
    I have quite cold turkey twice before in my life.
    I have not reason to start ever again.
    It is getting a little bit easier each day. I want a cigarette right now. Oh well.

    What I did was to spend my savings ahead of time as incentive to not have one.

    I also do not want to be stupid and I usually think of smokers as stupid.

    I like the idea of Lobelia, yet did not know about it when I quit. I also like hypnotherapy, yet never got around to it before I quit. I just quit and then kept quitting every day since then.

  2. comment number 2 by: admin

    Whatever works Clay, as long as you stay quit. Don’t give in a third time, my friend.


  3. comment number 3 by: Russ

    I quit cold turkey about 9 years ago. Just recently I have been having the “body aches” coming back that are associated with quitting, which is bring on great stress. I have no desire to pick up a cigarette nor feel a cigarette will help alleviate these feels, but was wonder if anyone had any ideas on how to handle this pain. It can at times last up to an hour or more. It is the exact same pain feeling I had when I was smoking and went awhile without a cigarette, and also the same as when I first quit.

  4. comment number 4 by: admin

    Hi Russ,

    That sounds like stress. Quitting smoking can create major stress in your body when going ‘cold turkey’. Is there anything in your life that is stressing you?

    I would start there. The only reason you are associating it with quitting smoking is because that is familiar to you. Had you never smoked and had stress due to some other situation, such as the illness of a family member, you wouldn’t be comparing to quitting smoking, but to that memory.

    Whatever you do, don’t allow yourself to fall back into the smoking trap.


  5. comment number 5 by: johny

    cannot disagree more. Cold Turkey has been proven again and again as the most effective stop smoking treatment. (80-90% of long term success – cold turkey) Never again another puff is the mantra to observe. People who get through the first 2 weeks of not smoking via cold turkey – no aids – have the highest I repeat the highest chances of success, meaning no relapse. Read this article for more info: – the Internet’s oldest forum devoted to the art, science and psychology of cold turkey quitting, the quitting method used by 80-90% of all successful long-term ex-smokers.

  6. comment number 6 by: admin

    I will have to disagree with you. Statistics from the government show the other end of the scale to be true.

    However, we can agree on the ‘never again’ part. That’s what most people are missing. They haven’t truly quit when they quit.

    Most people find a program or supplement helps them by getting prepared for their quit day and it makes it far easier when they do go ‘cold turkey’ on that day.

  7. comment number 7 by: Hobert

    I quit 3 years ago on March 19,2011. I still go thru the day with the feeling something is missing?
    It is becoming less of an Issue you just have to resign yourself that you will always want that nicotine. Be tough you can do it GOODLUCK

  8. comment number 8 by: admin

    Thanks for your thoughts Hobert.

  9. comment number 9 by: steve

    male smoked for 40 years, quit dec 29 cold turkey,3 pacs a day, not so hard to quit, staying quit the challenge. doing ok. wife is day 6 using chanex, doing ok. you have a great site here quite helpful ,thanks

  10. comment number 10 by: admin

    Hi Steve,

    Yes, it is the staying quit part that is the challenge. Keep up the good fight.

  11. comment number 11 by: Joe

    Cold turkey, over two years ago.

    Not nearly as hard as people lead you to believe. The problem is that most people today don’t have the determination to do it on their own. How else do you think people quit before all the crutches came around to wean you off the smokes?

    Suck it up people, and deal with it. If you want to quit cold turkey, you can and will!

  12. comment number 12 by: admin

    Strong words and advice Joe. May work for some, but we still recommend that folks get help when they can.


  13. comment number 13 by: G

    I went to Allen Car center, it was great I quit smoking two weeks easily, but then one of my friends who went with me start smoking, and I just did that puff and boom when back to smoking a pack a day.
    Now after a year of ALlen Carr I started again, but now I did cold turkey. Its working, 3 months now, I just have to stick in my head never a puff again.
    At the end of the day, everything its cold turkey. You need to have the power to control yourself. Good luck!!

  14. comment number 14 by: admin

    You bet. That’s all it takes is one puff. No matter what anybody tells you, don’t take it!

  15. comment number 15 by: Amit

    Cold turkey is the best way to QUIT, non-smoker for 6 weeks now, I was a smoker for 14 years and now do not intend to smoke ever! Cravings reduce after 2 weeks and now it is just occassional, something that can be easily diverted. Dont buy patches and things, just do it cold turkey, it works!

  16. comment number 16 by: admin

    Sorry, just can’t agree. All the government studies show that cold turkey has very low success rates.


  17. comment number 17 by: Benji

    Thanks for the motivation the 3% figure has me focused now. I’ve been wanting to stop smoking for the last two months. Anything worth doing should be difficult. I believe nicotine effects every person differently. I met a man one time who one day simply said I’m done smoking and he still has 13 cigarettes in this guitar case from the late 70s, never craved. Another person quit two years ago but everyday runs from the smoke outside of our office. Oppisit ends of the spectrum good luck and congrats to everyone who has had sucess. I’m done smoking now too.

  18. comment number 18 by: wendy

    I quit cold turkey seven Weeks ago…for some reason the past few days have been very difficult…actually harder than the first two Weeks smoke free…any suggestions? How long do these terrible cravings last?

  19. comment number 19 by: wanda hardman

    24 days cold turkey and using this website for support. It was easy to quit because I had the flu. Now is the hard part because somehow life seems dull.

  20. comment number 20 by: Rich

    Cold turkey is much easier than people are led to believe. Understanding that the emotional/psychological addiction is actually worse than the physical addiction is key to fighting off those triggers that so many give in to. The biggest key to quitting cold turkey though, is to never give in to having just one. Once you do, you basically have to start over. Most who give in and have just that one smoke end up smoking again. But this is true for any method once you have truly quit.

  21. comment number 21 by: admin

    Hi Rich,

    Good advice, and cold turkey does indeed work for some. However most people need some assistance, which is why we recommend certain products.

    Thanks for posting,

  22. comment number 22 by: admin

    Good for you Wanda!

    Don’t feel like something is missing because you aren’t smoking any longer. Quite the opposite in fact. Now you can start doing a bunch of things you couldn’t before.

    Enjoy life!

  23. comment number 23 by: susan

    I have smoked a half a pack of cigarettes a day, for 23 years….4 days cold turkey…Mine was an eye opener that got me thinking it was time to quit. My mom wound up in the ER with heart diesease, not due to smoking but to being overweight. However, just learned from the doctor that sometimes its HEALTHER to be overweight then it is to smoke. Smoking is the #1 reason for heart diesease in women. Is smoking really worth my life??? I don’t think so! Cold turkey really isnt that hard if that is where your mind is.

  24. comment number 24 by: mike

    Quit 4 months ago “cold turkey” after smoking for 10 years, and honestly it has been much easier then I thought it would be. I haven’t cheated once and i am now able to run for hours without felling like I can’t breath. This amy sound counter intuitive but one thing that really seemed to help during cravings was cannabis…

  25. comment number 25 by: admin

    Hey Mike

    Glad to hear of your success!

  26. comment number 26 by: Zach

    Cold turkey is the way to go. Recent research suggests that nicotine replacement therapies (NRT) are ineffective. See

  27. comment number 27 by: Trish

    day 8 no cigarettes, was using patch but arm broke out, cold turkey for 6 days, I really really want a cigarette, I know people say they are bad for you, but I felt better when I smoked, I may have smelled, but I was in better moods, ate less, and had more energy. My only benefit of not smoking is I will save money on insurance and cigs. Any advice…. is it okay just to smoke like 4 cigs a day? I was doing two a day before I made the plundge to zero.

  28. comment number 28 by: Trish

    cant stop thinking about a cig…

  29. comment number 29 by: admin

    Hi Zach,

    I will agree that NRT is not the way to go, I will also have to argue that cold turkey is effective. Most people just don’t have the willpower.

    Matter of fact, the next comment I have to reply to on another thread is from a person who has gone cold turkey but just can’t stop thinking about cigarettes. This is all too common and unfortunately leads to failure too often.


  30. comment number 30 by: admin

    Hi Trish

    Even if you smoke 2 or 4 a day, you are still a smoker and will never be free, so don’t do it. You know as well as the rest of us that if you smoke a few, you will revert right back to being a full on smoker again. Don’t do it!


  31. comment number 31 by: admin

    Not to be harsh, but this is the problem with cold turkey. Just hang in there, is the only advice we can give now.

    Stay strong!

  32. comment number 32 by: joe d

    this is day 2 stop smoking go cold turkey

  33. comment number 33 by: admin

    Stick with it Joe!

    Let us know how you get on.


  34. comment number 34 by: Denise

    I quit cold turkey a week ago and I have no desire to smoke. I smoked for 25 years and I had enough of them just made up my mind that I dont want them anymore. I have a 1 year old and i need to be around for her.

  35. comment number 35 by: admin

    Good for you Denise! Keep it up.

  36. comment number 36 by: Juan

    I decided to quit smoking after a serious case of bronchitis. Could’nt even breath properly after 27 years of smoking. Stopped on a monday morning 2 weeks ago. Feeling 100 % better . Tried Champix the first couple of days to get over the worst. It really helped getting pass the first 5 days. No real side effects except for a bit of nausea. My first big test was having a couple of beers without smoking. Be warned : having alcohol increases you cravings 10 times !! What I did was permit myself one 4 mg gum (Nicorette) for the whole evening. It really helped taking the edge off. Guess I ‘ll use it in future when I have a couple of beers . Much better than having that 1 puff and then back to a pack of smokes within 3 days. But the key is that you must REALLY want to stop. Early days after 2 weeks but there’s no way I’ll take a puff when I’m sober and for those beers I’ll keep the gum as a back-up. Good luck to everyone trying. It’s great not being ruled by smokes any more.

  37. comment number 37 by: admin

    Good for you Juan – stick with whatever is working for you.


  38. comment number 38 by: Jack Adair

    I quit smoking in 1978 after 25 years of smoking 2 packs, 3 cigars and many pipes full of tobacco. I had to prepare my thinking of smoking (anything) before I started. I kept telling myself that I wasn’t going to let this weed affect my life any longer. I bought a carton of cigarettes and promised myself that with the last of these cigarettes “I quit smoking” and I did. As I used up the carton, I would reduce the number of puffs of the cigarette. As I approached the last package, I would light-up, take 2 puffs and knock off the lighted end, then put the remained back in the pack. I continued doing this until everything was gone. With each cigarette, I would tell myself that this weed was no longer going to control my life. I didn’t have a problem quitting smoking. The problem I was facing was the association feelings – I missed the doing something. As I smoked, I developed habits of associating smoking with getting up in the morning, before and after eating plus many others. It was at these times that I missed, not the cigarettes, doing something with my hands. I ended up going to chewing gum, Wrigley’s Spearmint Gum. I found that I was hooked on the gum, so I cut each stick in half for about a year – then during a flu session, I quit the gum. Quitting smoking requires a person to really mean “quitting” and not just wanting to quit. You must program your own thinking to not allow that stinky weed to control your life. Quitting smoking is not hard, it’s the association cigarettes that will drive you nuts. Be strong mentally and never, NEVER pickup that first cigarette. You’ll find your taste of food will improve after quitting. You’ll also become annoyed with other people’s smoke. When I quit smoking, I weighted 185 pounds. After 2 years, I put on 30 pounds to 215 and I’ve stayed there all these years. Remember – NEVER PICKUP THAT FIRST CIGARETTE and you’ll be just fine – no more cigarette burn wholes, no more stinking like “smoke weed” plus look at how much money you’ll be saving by not smoking anymore. And the best side-effect from stopping smoking is you’ll be improving your health and your lungs will clear up. Be strong and program yourself to quit smoking – then QUIT SMOKING FOREVER!

  39. comment number 39 by: Tereasa

    N.O.P.E. Not One Puff Ever! I quit smoking after a 2 pack a day habit for thirty years, seven weeks ago. Cold Turkey! I feel great most days. I feel that the secret to staying quit is to conversate with yourself when that urge comes. For exampl, you got family stress and just have to smoke to make it better. Tell yourself NO! If I smoke that cigarette, I will still have that stress and will have blown my quit and be a smoker again. When you are bored and think I need a cig NOW, tell yourself NO! I will still be bored while smoking it and afterwards too and will have blown my quit for nothing. WHtever the excuse you try to give yourself to smoke, just stop and say NO! Whatever the problem/excuse/reasoning smoking isn’t going to change it. Not worth blowing my quit. Each day gets easier. At 7 weeks, I am still a baby at this but I don’t want a cig today at all. I will win this battle because I am tougher then any excuse I can think of to start back smoking. I am tougher then any burning piece of stinking, cancwer causeing paper. Ya’ll have a good day now and keep the quit! NO to any excuses! NOPE!

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