How to Quit Vaping
Many people start vaping in order to quit smoking. While it might help you trade one habit for another, you may still be doing damage to your body with vaping. In order to understand how vaping effects the body we have to turn to the scientific research that has been done in the past decade. Unfortunately, there is still very little long-term research on the effects of vaping because it is still so new. The first e-cigarettes only became available in the US in 2006 or 2007.
If you are considering quitting vaping it can be helpful to understand its side effects, how it effects your body, and some of the best ways to quit vaping.
Is Vaping Addictive?
You might be wondering if vaping is really addictive. The short answer is: yes. E-liquid, which people vape, contains nicotine. Nicotine is addictive therefore vaping is addictive. There has been a long standing argument in the vape community that nicotine from e-liquid is somehow less addictive than the nicotine in cigarettes.
According to a study published by the American Chemical Society, vaping nicotine is just as addictive as smoking cigarettes. There are in fact different kinds of nicotine. One of the big differences is that there is nicotine derived from tobacco and nicotine derived from nightshade vegetables like eggplant and tomatoes. But this study found the most addictive kind of nicotine in over half the vape products that they tested.
Vaping Without Nicotine
Some people might argue that if you vape zero nicotine e-liquid you cannot get addicted. There is more and more research showing that behavioral addiction is just as legitimate as substance addiction. Even if you stay away from nicotine it is still possible to have a behavioral addiction to vaping. Recent research has even begun to show that behavioral addiction releases chemicals in your brain that remain there for up to three months after you quit.
Vaping Side Effects
In addition to being addictive there are other side effects to vaping. According to DrugAbuse.gov, the side effects can be caused by the use of nicotine, other chemicals in e-liquid, or metals in the vape.
Side effects include:
- Dizziness or nausea
- Throat pain
- Respiratory problems
- Possible increased risk of cancer
- Possible increased risk of lung disease
Symptoms like headache or dizziness are most likely caused by exposure to too much nicotine. However, respiratory problems and coughing could symptoms of lung disease and might be far more serious. These are generally caused by inhaling metal particles that are produced when the coils are heated. If you are experiencing any of these symptoms it is important to talk to your doctor.
Is Vaping Bad for your Teeth?
In addition to the side effects talked about above, there is evidence to suggest that vaping is bad for your oral health. Research published in the Journal of Cellular Physiology found that vaping was bad for the cells that line the inside of your mouth. In fact, it actually caused these cells to become deformed. This is bad news for vapers because it can mean an increased risk of gum disease and other oral problems.
Generally, what is bad for your mouth is bad for your teeth as well. Gum disease and poor oral hygiene can lead to tooth decay. As of right now, the direct effects of vaping on your teeth are not fully known.
What Happens When you Quit Smoking and Start Vaping?
When you quit smoking and start vaping it is most likely that you are simply transitioning from one addiction to another. Research shows that people who vape are no more likely to quit smoking than people who try other methods https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4122246/. In short, using e-cigarettes in order to quit isn’t better than the patch, nicotine gum, or going cold turkey.
It is also important to note that the FDA has not approved e-cigarettes as an aid for smoking cessation. If you are trying to quit smoking you might want to consider going with something that has been approved for that purpose.
Now that you know a little more about the negative effects of vaping you might be wondering how you can quit vaping. When quitting vaping it is important to take care of both the behavioral addiction and the substance addiction involved. As far as nicotine goes there are many different methods you can try.
Some people chose to do a nicotine replacement method. This means that rather than using a vape to get nicotine you might use gum or a patch. This method is helpful for getting you off the vape but you will still be addicted to nicotine.
Other people prefer a taper method for nicotine addiction. If you are doing this you might slowly taper yourself off of e-liquid that contains nicotine. Most programs that have people do this have them taper down to zero nicotine in about a week.
You can try a combination of nicotine replacement and the taper method. You might try using nicotine gum and tapering down to gum with no nicotine after about one week. This method is helpful because it means you are already working to curb the behavioral addiction as well.
In order to stop the behavioral addiction you have to actually stop using e-cigarettes. Like we talked about above, you can get down to zero nicotine e-liquid but still have that behavioral addiction to the act of vaping. There are a number of techniques you can use to help you with this. When you feel the urge to vape you can stand up and do some jumping jacks. Exercise provides a similar adrenaline and dopamine rush that you get from addiction. So, doing this can help you with the craving.
Be careful when looking for information out there about quitting vaping. A lot of the sites that have information about the topic are vape websites, and may not be giving information based on the latest science and information!