**UPDATE 3 – While I love my Riva that I suggested getting in update 2, I have found that psychologically I find it far easier to refrain from smoking if I have an electronic cigarette that actually looks and feels like a cigarette.
While the Riva is a great piece of kit and I do still use it regularly, it looks and feels nothing like a cigarette, and so if you are wanting to kick the habit then I suggest that the Skycig or E-lites are your best bet for successfully achieving your goal.
**UPDATE 2 – If you’re thinking about buying an electronic cigarette for the first time I recommend that you read my advice for newbies here. This is from my own experience and could well save you several £10’s of pounds by helping you to make the right choice at the start.]
[Update: I HAVE now stopped smoking thanks to my electronic cigarette, AND I’ve managed to cut the cost of using it to under £12 per Month – Previously I was spending £450 each month on cigarettes!]
My name is Dave and I live in England in the UK. I’ve been a 40 a day smoker for over 20 years, and I’ve decided that I need to stop smoking.
It’s not just for the obvious health benefits either. Here in the UK cigarettes are heavily taxed, and at £7.50 per pack of 20, I was spending £15 per day on them, which comes to an eye watering £450 per month (more than my mortgage), or an even more frightening £5400 per year.
But wanting to stop is nothing new for me. In the past I’ve tried just about everything to quit including nicotine patches, gum, lozenges, an inhalator, Zyban, Champix, and even hypnosis – and up to now nothing has worked.
I did even try will power once but that only lasted for about 3 minutes!
I don’t know why I’ve found it so tough to give up cigarettes in the past.
You’d imagine that if you’re using some kind of nicotine replacement therapy that you wouldn’t have any problems with cravings, but for me all of these products have proved to be worse than useless, and I’ve ended up feeling like I’m going to tear my hair out and start climbing the walls if I didn’t have a cigarette.
So when a friend of mine bought an electronic cigarette and managed to go for 4 months without any problems I decided that I might as well give it a go as well.
I don’t know whether I really believed that an electronic cigarette would work for me, especially with my track record of abject failure, or whether it would just become an unused gadget, but with little to lose I bought one which arrived in the post on the 25th of July 2012.
For the first few days I was really just playing around with it, trying to get used to it and work out the best way to use it.
For the first 5 days I still smoked, but amazingly, even though I was just trying to get used to using my new toy and consequently wasn’t using it properly, the most I smoked on any of those days was 8 cigarettes – less than 1/4 of what I’d have usually smoked.
On the fifth day of using it I had 2 cigarettes left, and after I’d smoked them I decided not to buy any more and to just use the e-cig.
That was the 30th of July, and I haven’t had another cigarette since.
I can’t really believe how easy it has been. Of course there have been days where I’ve been convinced that I’d love a cigarette, and been really sure that I’d really enjoy it if I had one, but I’ve been able to resist by having a few drags on my electronic cigarette.
Those mind bending, uncontrollable, unbearable urges to go and get a pack that I’ve had when I’ve tried to give up before just aren’t there.
There have also been no mood swings, no getting annoyed at silly little things, and most importantly no falling out with the wife and kids!
I’ve even been able to easily control myself when I’ve been drinking alcohol, which as all smokers will know is when you tend to smoke more – and when you’ve been drinking and your will power is low, that’s when you’re most likely to succumb.
But this time I haven’t.
The conclusion that I’ve come to is that when you try to quit using nicotine gums, lozenges, or the other NRT products, you’re putting yourself through an incredible amount of stress. Sure, you’re getting the nicotine, but you are also totally changing your routine.
You probably smoke at certain times of the day, so not only are you trying to fight yourself and your urges to do this, but you also suddenly don’t have the ritual of taking out the pack, holding a cigarette, and breathing in and exhaling the smoke.
With electronic cigarettes you can still do all of those things, and for me the best thing is that you get the feeling of the warmth from the vapour that is just like you used to get with the smoke, so you don’t feel as though you’re missing anything.
You’re not having to fight yourself or your urges while you’re quitting.
The best thing of course is that when you stop smoking regular cigarettes you’re no longer breathing in the harmful chemicals, tar, and carbon monoxide that really are a danger to your health, even though you’re still getting the nicotine and the satisfying feeling that you used to get when you smoked.
And you’ll be amazed at how quickly you notice the changes.
I always thought I had a great sense of smell and taste, but now these senses seems far sharper and more acute than they were before.
But the most amazing thing has been how much better my breathing feels, actually within 2 days of using my electronic cigarette I could really notice the difference, my lung capacity seemed to have improved dramatically, and it’s the little things that make it really stand out.
While I was smoking I always used to sleep on my side. If I’d rolled onto my back while I was asleep I’d wake up suddenly feeling as though I was drowning in a sea of phlegm, before uncontrollably coughing my lungs up while waking up the whole house and probably half of the street as well.
Now I wake up every morning on my back. I sleep much better and feel much more refreshed in the morning, and the best bit is that I don’t cough at all when I wake up!
It really has been quite astonishing – as crazy as it makes me feel now, it’s been over 20 years since I didn’t wake up coughing every morning!
As I write this today on the 8th of August 2012 I haven’t had a cigarette for 9 full days, and while some of you might think that’s no big deal, it’s the best I’ve ever managed in over 20 years.
The longest I’d managed to give up for in the past was when I spent 5 days in bed with a serious bout of flu and I was physically incapable of smoking, and can you guess the first thing I did when I managed to crawl out of bed? Yes! I had a cigarette!
So what I’m saying I guess is that if I can give up smoking using electronic cigarettes then anyone can, and what I’ve decided to do is to use this site to chronicle my journey and hopefully inspire other hardened smokers to do themselves a favour by hanging up their lighters, and giving their lungs a well earned rest.
Since I keep a diary I’m going to reproduce my experiences here so you can see what the journey has been like, and you’ll hopefully be able to see that what you’re going through is shared by other people who give up smoking too – and that you CAN do it!
I’ve also spent a lot of time finding out how to cut the costs of using an electronic cigarette by filling up the cartridges (or cartomizers as they’re known) with e-liquid yourself, among other things, and the result is that I’m going to be spending no more than £12 per month.
£12 per month! Can you believe that?
That will come to £144 PER YEAR! – I used to spend more than that on cigarettes in 10 DAYS!
Anyway, I’ll go through all of that on another page. Please feel free to browse the site, enjoy it, and I hope it helps you to kick the habit for good!