Cigarettes be gone! I’m pleased to report that I haven’t smoked a single cigarette since my last monthly check-in. Not. A. Puff. With the exception of an unfortunate four-day blip at the start of my smoking cessation journey, today marks two smoke-free months and I’m feeling pretty awesome. That’s the good news. Now, onto the bad news.
Smoking cessation is one thing. Nicotine withdrawal is another!
If you’ve been following my journey, you’ll know that cold turkey was just way too much for me to handle. That’s what prompted me to start vaping shortly before my last update. Just a few days in, I wrote a rave vape review that I still stand by 100%. Vaping gives me everything I used to get from my Marlboro Golds, with the exception of tar, formaldehyde, ammonia, hydrogen cyanide, arsenic, many other cancer-causing chemicals, and bad breath.
Did you notice that nicotine wasn’t on the list? That’s because I’m still getting plenty of that. When I decided to incorporate vaping into my smoking cessation journey, I selected a menthol E juice with 6 mg of nicotine. It’s not a ton – many vapers opt for 12 or 18 – but it’s as much as I’d been getting from my cigarettes. Given I hope to eventually be vice-free, I went into vaping with the intention of bringing my nicotine intake down slowly but surely, and eventually giving up the vape altogether.
From 6 mg to 3 mg – I’ve successfully transitioned to a lower nicotine dose.
A couple of weeks in, I decided I was ready to lower my nicotine intake – with caution. For a few days, I kept two vapes on the go; one with a 6 mg juice and the other with a 3 mg juice. If you’re thinking about decreasing your own E juice nicotine level, I would highly recommend taking this approach. Here’s why. If you drop to a lower nicotine dosage and suddenly feel it’s not enough to satisfy the craving, you may find yourself reaching for a higher dose. And if you don’t have access to that higher dose in the form of E juice, you may find yourself reaching for a pack of smokes. Back to square one. Don’t do it!
For me, a four-day overlap was enough to adjust without any withdrawal symptoms, and I’m now coasting along quite nicely with my 3 mg. So, what’s next?
Here’s where I am with my quit smoking plan.
At some point in the next few weeks, I plan to transition from 3 mg of nicotine to 0 mg using the above approach. I’ll overlap the two while weaning myself off the higher dose. And even when I am 100% nicotine-free, I’ll keep some 3 mg close at hand – just in case. Why? Because shit happens and no way, no how, am I picking up a cigarette again!
That’s it for this update. Stay tuned for check-in #3 same time next month. Until then, have you quit smoking? Are you a wannabe ex-smoker? Do you or did you ever vape? I’d love to hear about your personal experience. Please share!