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Is Vaping An Addendum To The Quit Smoking Timeline?

By Tyler McCanus

Monday July 27, 2015
vaping may help smokers quit

The quit smoking timeline is an outline of how your body reacts when you stop using traditional tobacco cigarettes. It’s a common search for people who are taking their first steps out of the clutches of Big Tobacco’s machine of addiction. No matter which cigarette brands you favored as a smoker, that first step in getting them out of your life was probably the hardest. The payoff though, is extraordinary. Even within the first few hours you will feel the effects, mainly through your heart rate dropping back down to normal and later your blood pressure too.

Whether you use a vape kit in your transition or not, other effects will start setting in during the following weeks and months. Your risk of heart attack will go down. Your taste buds will suddenly become much more receptive, not to mention your sense smell. Once you push through the coming nicotine withdrawals (alleviated by vaping if you make that choice), you will start to feel less winded. Your lungs will get rid of that extra mucus they built up to protect themselves from the tar contained in all major cigarette brands, the ones whose smoke you have been putting into your body. Once you cough that stuff up (ew, I know), breathing will be much easier.

A year after you’ve put traditional tobacco cigarettes behind you, your risk of heart disease will have been cut in half. Make it to that five-year mark? By then your ditching of cigarette brands will have more or less reset the damage you have caused to your body by smoking. It won’t be back to 100%, but it will be very close in a lot of areas (for instance, your risk of stroke will have been reduced down to what any non-smoker’s would be). All of this is great and looking at that quit smoking timeline may very well do enough for you to drop the habit today. But for millions of ex-smokers, the addition of a vape kit gives them an alternative to make things that much easier.

Quit Smoking Timeline Addendum Effect?

quit smoking timelineWe think that’s a great thing and we’ve seen how vapor cigarettes or electronic cigarettes, whatever you choose to call them, have made an impact on so many. Yet one of the questions we have come across over the years is how vaping, or the allure of vaping, could affect ex-smokers.

The idea is this: A smoker has successfully quit on his/her own and become an ex-smoker. This ex-smoker has proudly been restraining themselves from their favorite cigarette brands and have enjoyed the results we mentioned above.

Great! Well, maybe not so great. Along comes the idea of vapor cigarettes and it gets this ex-smoker’s antennas up like they haven’t been in years. You’re saying I can go back to imitating my old smoking habits without the costs? Sign me up!

That sounds terrible, right? It would essentially add an addendum to the quit smoking timeline, which would be: After you finally quit, take up vaping! That’s not the point of electronic cigarettes at all, but the scare tactics of those opposed to ecigs often include this. There are even small studies nonchalantly being quoted as proving this, like this blurb about one such study in Scotland that suggests smokers are tempted to start vaping or just plain start smoking again. Of course the study only interviewed a small sample size of 64 people, but that won’t stop it from being used as further proof that vapor cigarettes are threat to smokers – or all mankind!

UPDATE: As of 2016 the aforementioned study was taken down from the news site where we found it posted. Perhaps because the science behind this anti-vaping study was so thoroughly exposed! Now anti-vapers are focussing on ecig battery explosions.

The first problem with this line of thinking is that it doesn’t hold up in any scientific method I’ve ever seen. Nobody seems to be comparing vapor cigarettes to traditional tobacco cigarettes as far as allure to ex-smokers. Basically, it stands to reason that anyone being drawn back in to smoking by ecigarettes are just as likely to be drawn back in from traditional tobacco cigarettes. This was exactly our point when writing a few months ago about the supposed allure that ecig ads have on ex-smokers. Sure watching someone vape may make you want to pick up a tobacco cigarette, but so does watching someone smoke and you’re likely to see that on a daily basis if you live on this place we call earth.

The temptations of smoking probably don’t go away completely for most people; it’s how they manage them that make all the difference. For some, a vape kit was a great way to preemptively manage the temptations and set them on the path to successfully complete the quit smoking timeline. Not with an addendum at the end, but with vaping as an alternative that they could use from the get-go. So, maybe those worried are just looking at this all wrong.

Even If True, Weigh The Costs!

vaping vs smokingBut lets say, just for the sake of argument, that all of this is true. That there is a strong temptation of picking up a vapor cigarette, which doesn’t have the smell, high, costs, and other negative attributes of traditional tobacco cigarettes. That this temptation can lure in some ex-smokers and to a greater degree than that analogue cigarette they have done such a good job of avoiding.

If this is the case, and we don’t think it is, does it still outweigh the benefits of helping millions more smokers make the switch? We’re talking about a small percentage of ex-smokers who may be drawn back in and maybe some of them pick up an ecig (probably non-nicotine) to relive those smoking days or to fight off nicotine withdrawal symptoms.

Put that on one side of the scale, and on the other put the millions of current smokers who are on the path to destructive and often fatal diseases because they can’t stop. The people on that side of the scale have been waiting for a legitimate alternative to tobacco cigarettes for years if not decades. Are we really going to clamp down on their opportunities because vapor cigarettes may be attractive to some ex-smokers?

What often happens in these discussions about electronic cigarettes and vaping is that we get lost in the details. The dozens of studies or the propaganda from different organizations, some of which are lobbied by groups who have their own agenda. We get too wrapped up to see the bigger picture. We aren’t able to see the forest for the trees. Because if we take a step back and realize what is at stake, none of us should really be worried about vaping becoming an addendum to the quit smoking timeline. We would only be focused on getting current smokers on that timeline as quick as possible, either with a vape kit or without. That’s what is important here and that is what should continue to be important to those who really care about smokers and ex-smokers.





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