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Electronic Cigarettes

Electronic Cigarettes – The New Smoking Cessation Aid

Electronic Cigarettes or e-cigarettes for short have been touted and promoted as the new method to help smokers kick the habit. There are several issues with this theory, the primary one being that e-cigarettes are actually a nicotine delivery system. What they are designed to do is provide a healthier, greener alternative for nicotine delivery than traditional cigarettes, cigars or tobacco.

E-cigarettes aim to combine the delivery with the feelings and movements involved with regular smoking. The smoker inhales the mist, which is manufactured to taste like the cigarette brand of your choice and blows out the residue much like a traditional cigarette. The nicotine is absorbed through the lungs, and the feeling and effect are essentially the same.

This is the primary trouble with e-cigarettes; it’s more like switching brands than quitting. Because the addictive factor of cigarettes lies with the nicotine, using an e-cigarette as means of quitting is like giving a drug addict clean needles and well manufactured heroine. It might be better, but it’s definitely not the best solution.

One reason e-cigarettes are able to help smokers reduce their tobacco use is that they fulfill part of the equation that patches ad nicotine gum doesn’t, that is the ritual. Lighting up, dragging on the cigarette and exhaling out the smoke. All these actions are repeated artificially with electric cigarettes. Nicotine delivery is also much faster with an electronic cigarette emulating the effect of smoking even further.

E-cigarettes can be helpful and recent studies show that they do hold promise in helping smokers quit, especially if they are used in a step process; an added benefit is that they reduce some of the health risks of smoking, specifically lung cancer. Recent studies showed that 13% of smokers who tried to quit using high-dose nicotine patches were successful within a year. This isn’t a mind blowing number, but do show that the devices might be able to help smokers cut down on cigarettes and eventually quit.

In a study conducted in recent years, researchers kept track of about hundreds of individuals who were offered to try e-cigarettes to quit smoking, and followed up with them seven months later. At the time of the follow up about 50% reported they had cut down on regular cigarettes of were not using regular cigarettes at all any more.

Electronic cigarettes have not been endorsed by the FDA (Food and Drug Administration) as a smoking cessation aid as of now and in 2010 reprimanded companies that marketed the product as such. None the less more public places banning smoking, e-cigarettes are becoming increasingly popular in clubs and bars. In 2011 CDC statistics showed that about one in five smokers had used electronic cigarettes, a significant jump from one in ten reported in 2010.

Individuals who have tried and failed to quit smoking should consider e-cigarettes, they are at least a healthier option to tobacco and failing to offer this alternative option would be a mistake. Although the long-term effects of e-cigarette use aren’t known, the lack of carcinogens and second hand smoke make it easy to assume that it is a greener and safer method of nicotine delivery.

Over 70% of smokers want to quit, but very few ever succeed. Although e-cigarettes might not be the silver bullet, they are definitely one more notch in the utility belt available to help nicotine addicts quit the dangerous habit.

Nicotine Gum, Lozenges, and Tablets

In 2013 there are absolutely no questions about cigarettes and the diseases and problems they cause. Also known as cancer sticks, the reasons to stop smoking are outweighing the benefits of smoking by the thousands.

Let’s face it, not only are they gross but they can kill you. There are so many ways that one can stop smoking now that it seems ridiculous that people can still find excuses to continue to smoke. Let’s take a look at some of these methods.

First up is Nicotine Gum. When chewing the gum, you need to wait at least 15 minutes after eating or drinking. The gum is then chewed until it’s soft and produces a pepper like taste with tingling. When this is achieved, the gum is then tucked between the teeth or gums. When the tingling dissipates, the consumer will need to re-chew the gum until the tingling comes back and then tuck it into another spot. Continue this step until the nicotine is depleted or roughly 30 minutes or until the craving has subsided.

Next on the list are the nicotine lozenges. Like the nicotine gum, you should wait at least 15 minutes after eating or drinking to take this lozenge. The consumer will place the lozenge on the tongue and let it slowly dissolve realeasing the nicotine into the blood stream.

In the first six weeks of taking the lozenges, you should be taking one every one to two hours which will equal out to about nine tablets per day. In weeks seven through nine you will need to take one lozenge every two to four hours. In the last weeks leading up to week twelve you will decrease your lozenge intake to one lozenge every four to eight hours. Following these steps will greatly increase your chances to quit smoking safely and effectively. It is important to remember not to smoke while taking these lozenges as it can cause nicotine poisoning.

Nicotine tablets help prevent weight gain after you quit smoking just like the gum and other nicotine replacements if they are used for the right amount of time and the at right dose. Nicotine tablets fast acting such as the nicotine gum but easier to hide and simpler to use than the gums. These tablets have been known to stop moodiness, cravings for food and urges to have a cigarette.

Nicotine tablets can usually stop the above symptoms, as long as they are used at the correct dose. Nicotine tablets can safely be combined with other medications (like the patch) to improve your fight to quit smoking.

In conclusion, the advances that have been made in the past few years or so are quite astounding. There are so many different options available for those who are ready and willing to quit smoking. Consult your physician to see which method is best for you.

Nicotine Patches

How to Quit Smoking With Nicotine Patches

Nicotine Patch MethodSmoking is one of the hardest habits to kick, not only because of it’s addictive qualities, but because of the fact that cigarettes are so readily available and commonly used the smoker is constantly faced with the object of his addiction. Thankfully there are many aids available to help smokers kick the nasty and life threatening habit. Nicotine patches are one of the most common and can be very helpful to users trying to kick the habit.

A nicotine patch is a delivery method for nicotine that helps relieve the urge to smoke and lessens some of the most common withdrawal symptoms. The patch, that resembles a large Band-Aid, is placed on the skin and the nicotine is absorbed through the skin. For greater efficiency always apply the patch to a clean hairless area between the waist and your neck.

Individuals who choose to use nicotine patches to as a smoke cessation aid will start with a higher dose patch and gradually step down to lower and lower levels. Patches are available that provide 24 hour nicotine doses, and there is no evidence to support tapering down being easier or more effective than the steady dose. Clinically speaking there is little to no benefit to using the patch for over the recommended 8 weeks.

Although the patch doesn’t help with the ritualistic part of smoking, it does help with the moodiness and irritability and general ill feeling associated with nicotine withdrawal. There are steps that can be used to help the use of nicotine patches go smoother and raise your chance of successfully quitting once and for all.

Starting at night is one way to make sure you make the transition to non-smoker as painless as possible. Because the patch takes a while to absorb, this gives you the entire night or your nicotine levels to stabilize and will lower your withdrawal symptoms. Because the nicotine level provided with a cigarette is much higher, having the entire night to level out will help you feel less anxious and antsy on your first day as a smoke free individual.

Try to avoid places you usually smoke, especially on your first day. If there are friends that you usually smoke socially with, explain that you are quitting and try to avoid the trigger areas. Because the addiction to cigarettes is as much psychological as it is physical, avoiding places where you normally light up can help increase your chances of success immensely.

If you are quitting because of heart disease make sure to contact your physician before using a nicotine patch. Because of the fact that nicotine raises the heart rate it is important to be cautious if you suffer from angina, high blood pressure or another cardiovascular condition. This is also true for individuals who have diabetes, thyroid issues or stomach ulcers.

Using the patch regularly can lead to the development of a rash on the location were the patch was. In some instances it is due simply to the skin reacting to the adhesive on the patch, although some do also react negatively to the nicotine itself on the skin. It is best practice to use the patch on a different area each day to avoid these negative side effects.

In some instances patients experienced insomnia, sleep disturbances and vivid dreams. Some also reported nausea at night while using the patch. The solution is to simply remove the patch in the evening as in many cases that helps users avoid sleep disturbances.

Cold Turkey

How to Quit Smoking Cold Turkey – And Succeed

Cold Turkey MethodQuitting cold turkey is still the most commonly attempted method to quit smoking. “Cold turkey” refers to the basic ‘flush the cigarettes’ and never smoke again approach. Most people who want to quit smoking have tried this strategy at some point or another, although only about 3-10% are able to quit completely using this method.

Quitting cold turkey has been compared to trying to tightrope walk for the first time without a net; although a small percentage might survive the attempt, the vast majority of smokers are going to fall off the wagon before they ever knew what hit them. They soon find themselves back to their regular smoking habits.

Part of the problem is the lack of understanding that nicotine is a truly addictive drug – not just a psychological dependence like some other substances. After years of regular use your body will crave nicotine and will punish the lack with insomnia, depression and irritability that can last for over three months. Understanding, expecting and preempting these withdrawal symptoms can help make your attempt at quitting successful.

It’s important to remember that you will definitely not be functioning at full speed during the first few days of quitting, so plan for that. Choose a start date that is either over the weekend or a holiday so you can have a few days to be alone in your misery and not adversely affect your job performance. If you have vacation days saved up, cash some in and take the first few days off to make a long weekend for you to detox in privacy.

Back off of your diet and indulge yourself, especially during the first few days. Prepare before hand with comfort food and guilty pleasures and allow yourself all the leeway you need during the first couple of days. Spend the day sleeping, watching TV, playing video games or other activities that distract you and help pass the time.

Avoid places where people are smoking, and you where you might be tempted to bum a smoke or even just stand in line with the smoke. Stay away from bars, clubs and social events as well as areas you know are frequented by smokers. Your best option is to stay home and away from potentially frustrating situations that might heighten you need for nicotine.

Remember, that much like quitting any other addiction, quitting smoking is done one day at a time. Try to avoid focusing on how you are going to make it through the week, just try to make it through the hour, and the day. One day at a time is the only way quitting cold turkey can be successful.

Make sure you have a good stock of your favorite hydrating beverages on hand. The lack of nicotine and stress will probably make you very thirsty and sucking on a bottle can relieve some of the need for the physical routine of sucking on a cigarette. Fluids will also help flush out your body faster and more quickly reduce the level of nicotine in your system.

Quitting cold turkey is not for the faint hearted, quitting without any outside help takes determination, guts and the ability to keep your promise to yourself. One study found that men who had substituted the oral behavior smokers are used to with other oral activities were more likely to stay nicotine free on a permanent basis.

There are many helpful books, manuals and motivational products to help you stay motivated to stay smoke free. Having a friend quit with you is another great way to make sure you stick to your promise and quit smoking for good.