Most smokers, especially teenagers and young adults, have opted for e-cigarettes and vaping. In the United States alone, over 30% of high schoolers use nicotine products.
Quitting from nicotine addiction is quite difficult and often leads to relapse or switching to cigarettes. Smokers have also been identified in the high-risk groups of severe coronavirus cases due to weakened lungs.
Adam Leventhal from the University of Southern California Institute for Addiction Science described that several studies have indicated 'that there is a significant risk of developing nicotine dependence symptoms among teens that use e-cigarettes.' Quitting nicotine addiction and vaping for good can be done with several steps but can be done with professional help and the following six steps:
Identify Your Why
Being aware of how dangerous nicotine addiction can be and how bad it is for your health is not a strong enough reason to quit smoking or vaping. However, according to Smokefree Teen by the US National Cancer Institute, identifying the why of quitting will empower individuals to make the choices that will result in overcoming nicotine addiction.
Vaping hinders a lot of goals such as emotional health, expenses, and relationships. Constantly reminding yourself of you why will help you with the strong urges to return to smoking or vaping.
Commit to a Date
Being mentally prepared is key to overcoming addiction, as the brain's reward system is mostly responsible for the behavior. It's important to commit to a date that you will quit - and the sooner the better because giving yourself a bigger window may tempt you to change your mind.
Create a Quit Plan
With professional help, a quit plan involves goals and important concerns after you've determined your quit date. Smokefree Teen also has a tool that helps design a personalized quit plan depending on your daily activities. Much like a tracker, the tool can help you see your progress as you commit to becoming nicotine-free.
Set Your Expectations
Quitting the habit of vaping is no easy feat so it is important to set your expectations and anticipate some upcoming challenges. Nicotine gives a certain buzz that stimulates the body, which fades as 'you develop tolerance and your body starts to accommodate to the nicotine,' explained Dr. Sharon Levy.
During the first few days or weeks, there is a lot of discomfort from withdrawals, which usually result in cravings, irritation, or shifting moods. Levy shared that over time, cravings become less intense and withdrawal fades.
Identify Your Triggers
Knowing what triggers you can help you cope with quitting and withdrawal better - especially strong emotion triggers such as depression and anxiety. This could mean spending less time on social media or going out less.
Another challenge may be within your group of friends, who you used to smoke with together. They may be one of the main causes of triggering your cravings. An alternate solution to manage triggers and sources of stress would be finding an alternate activity such as spending time outdoors or talking to a reliable friend about your journey.
Picture Your Healthy Self
The power of vision is very important - and seeing a healthy version of yourself can help you quit and achieve your goals. One way is to make a list of positive things about yourself without vaping. You can also create health goals such as exercise routines, a weight goal, and a healthy meal plan.
Read Also: Does Smoking Cause Depression?
Check out more news and information on Vaping in Science Times.