And Vaping Cessation
Quitting Smoking and e-Cigarettes
More and more people are trying to quit smoking by turning towards vaping as a way to get their nicotine fix under the belief that they are healthier than traditional cigarette, however, numerous studies amongst teenagers and adults have shown that people who use e-cigarettes are either more likely to try traditional tobacco products later in life, or have less success in quitting smoking than those who don’t use e-cigarettes at all.
Bearing that in mind, it is no wonder that e-cigarettes can cause addiction or health problems in later life, though admittedly less than with traditional tobacco products. Regardless of how it is delivered, nicotine is still an addictive chemical, and e-cigarettes and vapes are considered in the same field as traditional cigarettes by the FDA of America. In fact, nicotine is such a highly addictive drug that it is considered at least as difficult as quitting heroin, if not more difficult.
Now, take into account that JUUL, one of the leading e-cigarette makes, has a nicotine percentage of 3- 5% (the average is 1 – 2/6%) and they repeatedly state on multiple pages of their website that nicotine is intended only as a switching product, and not for new or non-smokers, but despite this, usage of e-cigarettes increased from 1.5% to 16% in high school students. The increase in e-cigarette consumption is dangerous because nicotine is what is known as a ‘gateway drug’ and may encourage younger smokers to try traditional tobacco or other drugs.
What Happens When I Choose to Quit Smoking?
- Nicotine affects the body extremely quickly, and leaves the body just as fast.
- The effects of smoking leave your body just twenty minutes after finishing your cigarette.
Within twelve hours of quitting smoking all carbon monoxide has left your body.
- Your risk of heart attacks decrease after one day.
For regular smokers, all traces of nicotine will leave the body by day three, and this is when the danger period of nicotine withdrawal kicks in. You may be cranky, have headaches or trembling hands, the urge to smoke is overwhelming because your body is demanding nicotine.
- After one month your lungs start to heal and you can breathe easier. Your blood circulation will improve.
And the benefits continue until for a decade after you quit smoking. After ten years, your body is as healed as it will get from smoking and you will be significantly healthier with less risks of strokes, heart attacks or cancer.
How Do I Quit?
It’s difficult, but not impossible. Whatever happens, you need to keep trying. You can seek out NRT (nicotine Replacement Therapy) such as patches or find another way to transition such as chewing gum or, yes, e-cigarettes. E-cigarettes are still dangerous, are still addicting, but the risk of cancer currently seems to be much less.
Some people swear by going cold turkey although that’s not for everyone. Try not to go cold turkey as it can be the hardest way to go through any withdrawal. No matter which method you choose, make sure you have support from friends, family and possibly health professionals as well. If you know that a certain person is likely to offer you a smoke, explain to them firmly once that you want to quit, and that by them offering you a cigarette, they are potentially hurting you and your efforts to become healthier.
Join a support group online or locally, and seek help from your doctor at Broadway Medical Center.
- “DrugFacts: Electronic Cigarettes (E-cigarettes)” National Institute on Drug Abuse; National Institutes of Health; U.S. Department of Health and Human Services https://www.drugabuse.gov/publications/drugfacts/electronic-cigarettes-e-cigarettes Accessed 11 Mar 2019
- Jegg, T L, “What Happens After You Quit Smoking? A Timeline” medicalnewstoday.com https://www.medicalnewstoday.com/articles/317956.php Last updated 19 Nov 2018. Accessed 11 Mar 2019.
- “JUUL Pod Basics” juul.com https://www.juul.com/learn/pods Accessed 12 Mar 2019
- Weatherspoon, D “Everything You Need to Know About Nicotine” medicalnewstoday.comhttps://www.medicalnewstoday.com/articles/240820.php Updated 11 Jan 2018. Accessed 12 Mar 2019