Do you want to quit smoking? If you have looked into vaping to quit smoking, then chances are you probably are. Overcoming the clutches of addiction is never easy. And smoking is one of many forms of addiction known to man. If you have tried everything from nicotine gum to inhalers but none of them seem to work, you can try to quit smoking with vaping.
The Effects of Smoking
The negative effects of smoking to your health are widely known. In fact, it is one of the leading causes of death and illness in the world. If you smoke cigarettes, you are at a higher risk of developing serious health conditions. Some of these conditions lead to long-term health damage, while others can be fatal.
Lung cancer is the most common disease experienced by long-term smokers. Aside from the lungs, it can also lead to cancer on the mouth, throat, esophagus, bladder, bowel, and more. It can also lead to coronary heart disease and stroke.
To avoid these risks to your health, you need to know what happens when you quit smoking and start vaping.
The Struggles of Trying to Quit Smoking
Before you look at ways in which you can use vaping to quit smoking, it is important to understand first where the struggle comes from. What is it that makes you want to go back to smoking? How can you overcome that and successfully live life without smoking another cigarette?
Here is a graph from the World Health Organization that shows the percentage of smokers from ten countries with the highest number of smokers worldwide:
One of the biggest struggles that smokers face when trying to quit is the withdrawal symptoms. They constantly feel this urge (or cravings) to smoke again. Some might be compelled to take one or two cigarettes just to fulfill those cravings. It is not long until you realize that you have gone back to your old ways of smoking and you have not succeeded with your goal.
Nicotine withdrawal is one of the biggest challenges to quitting smoking. Make sure that you plan ahead on what to expect and how you can combat those withdrawal symptoms once they arise. Stress is also part of the process. When you are unable to satisfy those nicotine cravings, your body suffers from severe stress. As a result of these factors, you can exhibit many other behaviors such as mood swings. You might feel like you are easily angered. For some people, they experience loss of appetite or weight gain.
The struggles of trying to quit smoking are different for every individual. Make sure you take time to understand the symptoms that you are struggling with. This will make them easier to manage so you can lead your life smoke-free.
How to Quit
The day you decide to quit smoking is one of the biggest steps you can take towards living a healthier life. The first week of vaping to quit smoking is the hardest. But with the right amount of planning, you can easily wean yourself from the addictive qualities of nicotine.
The benefits of vaping to quit smoking won’t be evident quickly. You need to get accustomed to the use of vaping devices instead of smoking cigarettes. The first step is to drop down the nicotine level on your vape device. You can reduce the nicotine level at a pace that you are comfortable with, or that will not shock your system. Again, it is only a matter of time until your body adapts to the new nicotine level. Over time, you must continue to reduce the nicotine consumption until you are vaping at zero nicotine.
Aside from lowering the nicotine level on your vaping device, one of the best tips for vaping to quit smoking is to choose a different e-liquid strength. You may switch your cartridge or vaping liquid from a high to lower strength. When you shop for e-liquids, you will find a variety of strengths to choose from. Just as you reduce the nicotine level, you should also reduce the strength of the e-liquid in a gradual manner.
Low nic e-liquid for vaping is just one step away from being a complete non-smoker. It will only be a matter of time until you become nicotine-free. Going zero nicotine is not as scary as you think, too. Just as your body got used to the effects of nicotine on your body over a period of time, it will also take time to develop that new habit.
Vaping is also a less harmful alternative to smoking. According to medical consensus in the US and UK, vaping can reduce the risks offered by smoking. The key factor here is the data between 1) people who vape to quit smoking, and 2) people who vape as a form of smoking.
In terms of short-term health improvements, there was a significant improvement among people who switched to vaping (from smoking). There have been improvements on lung function and cardiovascular health. There was also a reduced amount of respiratory disease symptoms.
Be patient with yourself as you gradually reduce the nicotine level or e-liquid strength that you consume. The trick is to do things slowly. Every individual develops the habit at a different pace so try to build your own timeline. Over time, you should be able to adapt to the lowest e-liquid strength and that is when you will experience the benefits of vaping on your quest to quit smoking. For a few months or years of adapting to this habit, you will soon be able to quit e-cigarette altogether. Whether you choose to quit e-cigarettes and all forms of smoking or not, the choice is up to you.
Over the past few decades, the popularity of e-cigarettes has grown bigger and bigger. It is a popular smoking aid and is recommended to help those who want to quit smoking. Evidence is still developing but there are many reasons why doctors recommend vaping to quit smoking.
E-cigarettes, also known as vaping devices, are marketed to help those who want to quit smoking do so seamlessly. They first appeared in the market in 2004 and have since exploded in popularity. By the year 2016, about 3.2% of adults in the US are already using them.
This graph from BBC will show you the number of adults that use vapes in the world:
To better understand what makes electronic cigarettes a healthier alternative to smoking, it is important to look closely at how it works (and how to use them). There are four basic parts that comprise an electronic cigarette: cartridge, heating element, battery, and electronic circuits. When you suck on the mouthpiece, it triggers a sensor to activate the heating element on the device that creates vaporized liquid with the flavor of the vape juice that was filled into it. There is a comprehensive range of nicotine level but it is possible to find ones with zero nicotine.
One of the reasons why electronic cigarettes caught the attention of many is due to its promise that it can bypass the health risks that come with traditional smoking. There are studies that suggest it can indeed help a smoker quit. On the other hand, there are also those that offer modest capacity to fight the urge to smoke. Vaping to quit smoking while pregnant is not recommended, though.
Cold turkey is a phrase used to refer to the process of quitting smoking abruptly and without the use of any products (such as vaping smoke). This method of quitting relies solely on the mental strength and will power of the smoker to fight off cravings.
There is some planning involved if you want to go cold turkey on your smoking habits. You need to avoid places or situations that would increase the likelihood of smoking. You can also change your routine so you won’t be compelled to revert back to your smoking habits (for instance, engaging in healthier activities that promote better health). The help and support from your friends and family can spell the difference, too.
Is it possible to quit smoking cold turkey? In order to succeed with this method, it is important to set a quit date. By setting a deadline for your goal, it adds a sense of urgency and increases your motivation to quit. Another strategy that you can use is to develop your will power. This strategy is easier said than done. It will also require more practice because giving in to your cravings can be highly tempting.
Drugs and Medications
Did you know that drugs and other types of medications are also recommended to help people quit smoking? Vaping to quit smoking results better health but this might not be enough for some people. The intake of prescription drugs and medications is the next logical step. In some cases, drugs are prescribed along with nicotine replacement therapy (NRT). These drugs are supposed to be consumed before the day you decide to quit.
Varenicline is the most common drug that is prescribed for people who want to stop smoking. This medication works by intercepting the brain’s nicotine receptors. As a result, it can do one of two things (or both): 1) it reduces the amount of pleasure you enjoy from smoking, and 2) it reduces symptoms associated with nicotine withdrawal.
This medication is prescribed for 12 weeks (starting a month prior to quit day). But in some cases, it is also prescribed for another 12 weeks to ensure that you won’t go back to smoking. There are certain side effects to the intake of this type of drug so it is important to talk to your doctor before you take them.
There are many other types of drugs that can produce the same effect as varenicline to the body. They are bupropion, nortriptyline, and clonidine. All of these should be taken only with a doctor’s prescription.
Cognitive Behavioral Therapy
Resisting the urge to smoke is one of the biggest challenges that those who try to quit go through. It is a difficult habit to break so it is important to alter your cognitive function so that you can overcome the addiction. The use of cognitive behavioral therapy is one of the recommended approaches aside from using vaping to quit smoking.
A procedure known as cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT) is an evidence-based treatment designed for the cessation of smoking. It is a clinically proven approach with several scientific studies to support it. In this form of treatment, smoking is seen as over-learned behaviors. With this approach, your cognitive system is disrupted to learn new and more fruitful behaviors to replace unhealthy, addictive behaviors.
Instead of being upset or anxious about not being able to smoke, it trains the mind to focus on other things. You can overcome your urge to smoke by disrupting this unhealthy pattern on the mind. Emotion regulation skills are also taught in order to cope with strong urges.
There are a variety of cognitive behavioral methods used for treating people who suffer from smoking addiction, such as impulse tolerance training, self-monitoring, mindfulness training, and cognitive restructuring.
Success Rate of Vaping to Quit Smoking
The study of vaping to quit smoking cigarettes is still in its infancy. More research and case studies are being done in order to determine if this is indeed a viable solution for those struggling with trying to quit smoking.
A survey and study conducted by the American Journal of Preventive Medicine has revealed some promising statistics for those who struggle to quit smoking. In particular, it sheds some light on the initial theory on why e-cigarettes, or vaping, can be the solution that ex-smokers are looking for. The study consists of 222 respondents, all of which considered themselves as long-term smokers. Of the 222 participants, 31% of them said that they managed to stop smoking cigarettes for 6 months after the use of e-cigarettes. Prior to this, they had tried other methods and have been unsuccessful with quitting.
The ex-smokers who quit within 6 months after using e-cigarettes have found themselves completely smoke-free (even with e-cigarettes) when that 6-month period was over. Another interesting result from the survey is that the ex-smokers that use e-cigarettes experienced 70% quit rate (versus those that did not use e-cigarettes). They are also 20 times less likely to smoke per day. This data is supported by another study from the New England Journal of Medicine. Based on this study, researchers were able to conclude that e-cigarette was twice more effective than other products to quit smoking.
To completely dismiss how effective is vaping to quit smoking is not smart. It is important to consider all possible options to ensure that you can get effective results. It is also important to read or learn from the success stories of vaping to quit smoking in order to understand how you can utilize it for better rates of success.
Vaping to Quit Smoking Side Effects
Vaping is a great way to quit smoking. But while there are proven benefits and studies to support that, many healthcare professionals would say that this method of smoking cessation is not medically approved yet. It is important to learn about potential side effects so you can minimize the risks of using them for smoking cessation.
One of the possible risks to vaping is when they are used by pregnant women. While the study of impact of vaping on pregnant women and fecal development is still in its infancy, it could lead to harm. Thus, health experts advise pregnant women against vaping.
Other short-term side effects of vaping include dry cough (ranging from mild to moderate), insomnia, and anxiety.
Tips to Quit Smoking
Vaping is one of many tools or products you can use to say goodbye to smoking for good. There are also several other strategies you can try to help you lead a healthier life. Here are some of the tips and strategies you can try:
- Find your reason. This reason will serve as your motivation to carve the path towards quitting smoking. This is also the same reason that will help you draw the will power to overcome the struggles of quitting. Choose a reason that has enough weight to it to push you further.
- Consider your diet. If you like to smoke cigarette as part of your post-dinner meal, it is important to evaluate what foods are part of your diet. Meat, in particular, is believed to make cigarettes more appealing. On the other hand, fruits, vegetables, and cheeses do not go well with cigarettes. Making slight changes to your diet can help curtail your cravings for a cigarette. Changing your before and after mealtime routine can also have an impact to your smoking habits.
- Be aware of cravings. You need to identify cravings when they happen. Most cravings last for 5 minutes. If you can resist that craving after the 5 minutes is over, you overcome the urge to smoke. Look at possible distractions to keep your mind off the urge to smoke.
- Line up your support. When other people support your goals, you are more likely to succeed with it. You can get support from your friends or family, or from local support groups.
- Hang out with non-smoking friends. You develop the same habits as the people you spend most time with. If you hang out with people who do not smoke, it is easy for you to kick your smoking habits.
Commonly Asked Questions About Vaping
Is there any serious danger with using vaping to quit smoking?
Vaping is considered an alternative to smoking for those who are worried about the latter’s health risks. There are still certain concerns about the dangers of vaping, especially since they have cartridges that are filled with nicotine and other types of e-juices. The danger lies when you fill that vape device with liquid material that is high in chemicals or nicotine. In order to make your switch a healthy one, it is important to choose low nicotine or zero nicotine levels. This is how you can ensure that you avoid long-term health risks.
What to expect when you quit smoking and start vaping?
Every cigarette that you don’t smoke is good for your health. The moment you quit smoking and start vaping, you can see immediate results in your body. Within the first 8 hours of quitting, the oxygen levels in your blood will restore to its normal level. The fact that vapes do not have carbon monoxide will enable you to experience those benefits immediately.
By 24 hours, you will be able to rid your lungs of the residual carbon monoxide within your system. Your body will start its healing process and this will continue for as long as you no longer smoke cigarettes.
How long does it take to quit smoking with vaping?
The level of cigarette addiction will vary from one individual to another. Some will be able to quit smoking almost instantly (once they have switched to vaping), while others experience more severe withdrawal symptoms. It also depends when there are certain triggers in the environment that will increase the urge to smoke again.
Do more people use vaping to quit smoking?
As the popularity of vaping, or e-cigarettes, continue to rise, so does the number of vaping to quit smoking success stories. It is impossible to determine if these people who quit relied solely on vaping to help them quit smoking, but it has definitely played an important role towards the goal of being a non-smoker.
The process of quitting smoking is never an easy journey. As with any forms of addiction, you need to rewire your way of thinking and develop new habits to abandon your smoking habits.
Vape quit smoking is a highly promising approach in an effort to live life smoke-free. You can increase your success rate when you incorporate other products and methods to quit smoking. Vaping might offer promising results but it would not hurt to try other methods, too. Based on the information given above, vaping offers plenty of benefits for those who want to quit smoking. It is a gradual process and is also recommended if you want to minimize the negative health impacts of smoking cigarettes.