What are the benefits of quitting smoking and switching to vaping?
Stop smoking. Try vaping.
What can you expect when you transition from tobacco to e-cigarettes?
So, you are thinking of quitting smoking? Congratulations! It’s a big decision that can potentially save your life.
In order to give up smoking for good, and see the massive health benefits that not smoking can bring, you need to give yourself the best chance of succeeding.
Does quitting cold turkey work?
We can all agree that it’s better for your health (and your wallet) to simply quit cold turkey. No e-cigs, no nicotine replacement therapy, no medication, no hypnotherapy - nothing.
Most smokers who have tried to quit have attempted the cold turkey method at some point. However, as a method for long term smoking cessation, it has the lowest success rate.
Less than 5% of cold turkey quit attempts are successful
(Become An EX®)
Research over the past 25 years has shown that, out of 100 people trying to quit smoking cold turkey, only three to five of them will succeed for longer than six months. In other words, while some people can quit this way, at least 95 percent of people can’t.
This is because cutting off all access to nicotine at once can lead to intense withdrawal symptoms. These can include:
- Lowered heart rate/blood pressure
- Acute cravings
- Constipation and/or diarrhoea
- Insomnia and fatigue
- Increase in hunger/sugar cravings
- Trouble concentrating
- Irritability/short temper
- Anxiety and/or depression
Vaping could give you your best chance at quitting for good
The Smoking Toolkit Study found that e-cigarettes are 60% more effective in helping smokers quit. This is when compared to smokers who attempt to quit unaided, or by using over-the-counter nicotine replacement products (gum, patches, inhalers, etc.).
E-cigarettes are 60% more effective
in helping smokers quit than NRT bought over the counter, or quitting unaided.
(The Smoking Toolkit Study)
Furthermore, a recent study by Action on Smoking and Health (ASH.org) showed that 52% of e-cigarette users (1.5 million) are now considered ex-smokers. For the first time, this is a larger number than those who vape and smoke - dual-users (1.3 million). This is really encouraging news for the success of vaping as a permanent quitting method.
What about the health benefits?
Before we go into the specific benefits of moving from smoking to vaping, I want to share a quote from Professor John Britton, chair of the Tobacco Advisory Group of the Royal College of Physicians.
“If all the smokers in Britain stopped smoking cigarettes and started smoking e-cigarettes we would save 5 million deaths in people who are alive today. It’s a massive potential public health prize.”
So, once you've digested that bombshell, read on to discover everything that is going on inside your body after you stub out your final cigarette.
Your heart rate will begin to drop back to a steady level.
Your heart and blood rate will have reached near normal levels and your circulation will begin to improve.
This is the point at which smokers quitting cold turkey begin to feel the first effects of nicotine withdrawal. As a vaper, that won’t happen to you!
Carbon Monoxide starts to leave your body.
Carbon Monoxide is a poisonous gas and is one of over 6000 chemicals contained in cigarette smoke. It binds to blood cells and prevents them from bonding with oxygen. This is why smokers experience various cardiovascular problems.
Vaping does not produce carbon monoxide so your body is free to detoxify this nasty substance.
Your heart begins to repair and your chances of a heart attack steadily decrease.
Also, your lungs will start to rid themselves of all the sludgy gunk that builds up when you smoke. This can cause you to develop a nasty cough, but don’t panic. Remember - better out than in!
Book a table at your favourite restaurant because your senses of taste and smell are coming back!
At this point, if you are quitting cold turkey, you are entering peak danger territory. All traces of nicotine will be out of your system and withdrawal symptoms will be at their most intense.
This is where most people fail at their quitting attempt as the cravings become too much to handle. However, if you choose vaping as your quitting method, you can still get some nicotine and dodge this bullet.
Your body is in full regeneration mode and you will start to notice a marked improvement in your physical health.
Your lung function is increasing so going out for a run, playing football with your kids, or simply climbing a flight of stairs, will no longer leave you gasping for breath.
Now that you’re not putting tar into your system, the cilia inside your lungs (microscopic hair-like structures) are no longer weighed down and can move freely again.
This means that they can keep your airways clear of mucus and dirt, reducing your risk of infection.
3 to 9 months
As your lung function continues to improve, any wheezing, coughing, and shallow breathing that smoking cigarettes caused should have dramatically reduced, or gone away entirely.
Your risk of heart disease will have been reduced by approximately half!
This is true even if you have switched from smoking to vaping, as the vapour in e-cigarettes has not shown risk of damage to heart cells.
You will have also significantly decreased your risk of having a stroke. The longer you don’t smoke cigarettes, the lower your risk will become.
As for your financial benefits, if you were a pack a day smoker, you should be over £1000 better off as a vaper!
Even if you’re still vaping, your risk of developing lung cancer risk will now be about half of what it was while you were smoking. This is because e-cigarette vapour contains none of the carcinogens found in cigarette smoke.
Also, your risk of heart disease is now roughly the same as that of someone who never smoked. Even if your e-liquid still contains nicotine, it’s been shown that the effects on nicotine on the heart are similar to those of caffeine.
Vaping is at least 95% safer than smoking
The NHS Smokefree website contains this quote regarding e-cigarette usage:
“There is growing evidence that e-cigarettes can help people stop smoking, with similar or better results than nicotine replacement therapies such as patches. It is important to use your e-cigarette enough to properly manage your cravings – people who use e-cigarettes too little or too rarely have less success at quitting smoking. Smokers who use an e-cigarette and get support from their local stop smoking service have the highest quit rates, with around two-thirds quitting successfully.”
Vape for long term quitting success
The length of time it takes for your body to fully repair entirely depends on the level of damage that has been done by cigarette smoking. But it will repair! The longer you stay off the ciggies, the more your health will improve.
Your body will thank you, your bank balance will thank you, and the people around you will thank you as they will no longer be exposed to your harmful smoke and nasty smell!
We're here to help you quit smoking for good
At Vape UK, we pride ourselves on being responsible vaping advocates. We keep up to date with all of the latest news and studies; we only supply high quality TPD compliant vaping products; and we are always on hand to offer helpful and honest advice about vaping. Please get in touch if you have any queries on quitting smoking.
If you are still considering making the switch from smoking to vaping, but want to learn more, you may find some of our other resources useful.
Check out our Beginners' Guide to learn more about vaping terms and equipment. Our blog on Vaping Myths is also handy if you want to check the truth about any negative press you may have heard about vaping.
- Nicola Webster