Plus 5 Proven Strategies to Help You Quit
E-cigarettes have made a big splash recently, with celebrities and famous personalities spotted puffing these battery-powered smoking devices anywhere – in restaurants, television shows, movies, and so on. Many people believe that the cure for nicotine addiction has finally arrived. But according to a new study published in the prestigious journal Lancet, e-cigarettes may not be the future of smoking cessation.
In the study, researchers compared individuals who received e-cigarettes loaded with nicotine, e-cigarettes without nicotine, and nicotine patches, and followed them for 13 weeks, in which they analyzed the participants’ quit rates after 6 months, the researchers found that e-cigarettes were no better than the patch in helping smokers quit. Furthermore, a third of the study participants who received e-cigarettes reported continuing to use them after 6 months, which means these people have become long-term users of these devices – good news for e-cig manufacturers.
They also emphasized that “uncertainty exists” about the role of e-cigarettes in tobacco control. Prior this, several studies have shown that electronic cigarettes may not be safe at all. Since most of them remained unregulated by the FDA, chances are, most products contain other potentially harmful chemicals. Also, nicotine, which is a major ingredient in many electronic cigarettes, is the main reason why tobacco is addictive. Therefore, using these devices in place of real tobacco may not really help, but instead, sustain nicotine addiction.
So if it isn’t e-cigarettes, what the solution to the rising rate of tobacco use worldwide? Here are some of the proven strategies that you can try to increase your chances of quitting smoking for good:
1) See a specialist. Contact a smoking cessation specialist near you. He or she can give you access to the tools and support you need to ditch the habit. Your doctor can also help you find the best treatment suitable for you.
2) Enlist support. Tell your family, friends and co-workers that you want to quit smoking. Getting social support is essential in the quit process. You may want to ask
E-cigarettes are not the solution to smoking addiction. Like regular tobacco, these electronic devices may also cause potential harm to your health.
them to remind you why it is important to quit smoking whenever they see you getting a cigarette. You can also encourage them to quit smoking too, especially the people in your household.
3) Take it slow. Most people succeed in quitting smoking if they have a target ‘quit date’. If you tried several quit methods already and failed to do so, you may want to start by cutting back gradually. This method may include delaying your first cigarette of the day, finding a substitute for your early morning or afternoon smoking habit, etc.
4) Take medication. There are prescription medications, such as Chantix, clinically proven effective in helping people quit. Unlike the traditional NRT products, these drugs don’t contain nicotine (the chemical that makes tobacco addictive). Instead, they work by blocking nicotine receptors in the brain so smoking becomes less pleasurable.
5) Go online. There are quit smoking applications accessible online, plus web-based communities and support groups that can give you a host of reliable information and resources to make quitting a much easier process.
E-cigarettes are not the solution to smoking addiction. Like regular tobacco, these electronic devices may also cause potential harm to your health. If you’re planning to quit smoking today, consider seeing a specialist, enlisting support, cutting back gradually, taking doctors’ prescribed medication, and getting support online. These are, as experts suggest, are much better approaches to quitting smoking than using electronic cigarettes.
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