Note : What follows is a guest post by my mum:
My husband has been smoking for about 60 years – around 20 per day, and I around 45 years – again 20 per day.
We were not initially aware of the possible dangers to our health, that information became available during the 60’s/70’s if my memory serves me right. I did give up smoking for nearly 2 years, without any NRT, and started again, socially and to my regret, it crept back up to 20 per day.
Some 5-6 years ago we attended a smoking cessation clinic, and both gave up for around 10 weeks. My husband was prescribed Champax, and I an assortment, nasal sprays, lozenges and mini tabs and were cig free. We were both in dire need of extra help to remain cigarette free, but our GP refused us any further prescriptions.
When I told the Pharmacist this she was appalled and said “Ask your G.P if he would refuse Methadone to one of his addicts after 3 months”. She made her point. Our reaction was one of “righteous indignation”, and as a consequence both lit up, and continued smoking whilst knowing the damage it was doing to our health.
My husband suffers from bronchial asthma and C.O.P.D (smoking damage very obvious), and has also has had a heart attack. I have 5 stents fitted in my arteries and am a Type 1 Diabetic, (aware of the possible outcomes from smoking – nerve damage, kidney problems, loss of limb, blindness etc).
When attending our various Clinics for monitoring our conditions, obviously we were both encouraged to quit the cigs. We had tried that, and gained nothing. All confidence in NRT had gone, quite literally, in a puff of smoke.
I, particularly, felt victimised and bullied for smoking, and took the coward’s way out and lied – telling the medical profession I was a non-smoker (doubly ensuring that everything I wore was untainted by smoke.) The lengths I went to in order to “satisfy” NHS needs, now I look back, is beyond belief. Lies and deceit do not lay easily on my conscience. But that answer was what THEY wanted to hear.
We both enjoyed smoking, really enjoyed it, but we were both suffering as a consequence, chest infections, coughing, shortness of breath, palpitations. and my husband’s health was rapidly deteriorating. He was never free from chronic coughing and wheezing, day and night.
Our eldest son introduced us to vaping. Initially, we were both a little sceptical. We knew it had worked for him, we could see that, and were so pleased he had given up on the cigs — was not even tempted to have one. Amazing!!
My husband tried it first, taking in the vapour as he had with cigs, and had an awful reactionary cough, not being able to get his breath for 30/60 seconds. Very, very frightening. Rule of thumb – don’t change to vaping whilst you have a chest infection!!
We had seen people vaping, and all said they had successfully given up or cut down on the cigs, and were very enthusiastic in sharing their experiences with us. Not surprising!!
With our eldest son’s encouragement, and knowing beyond doubt that we had to give up on the cigs, we both started vaping. This is some 6-7 weeks ago now. Since the day my husband started vaping, he has not had a cig. He is really enjoying vaping coffee, toffee, chocolate, mint etc. I had to wean myself off cigs, having 2 or 3 a day for the first 3 weeks or so. Then they started to taste and smell foul, whereas vapour fruit flavours and RY4 and RY6 were hitting the spot nicely! Plus the house and our clothes no longer smell of stale tobacco – a real plus!! We are now non smokers.
Within a couple of weeks, my husband’s breathing improved dramatically, and now when I lay my head on his chest – no wheezing! His cough is virtually non existent, whereas before it had been persistent. He has more energy, improved taste and smell and is able to walk without his customary shortness of breath. Even a sudden change in temperature is not affecting his chest as it used to do. I am also benefitting, very little coughing, no shortness of breath and no worrying palpitations. My blood sugar levels were affected initially, why I don’t know, but I am getting them back in control, and they will level out given time. PLUS – a clear conscience when I say I am a non-smoker!!
I feel I cannot emphasise enough the benefits we both have experienced in a relatively short space of time. We both wish to spread the word about vaping as a “safe enough for us” alternative to cigarettes.
We are actively joining our fellow vapours in their fight against Government proposals.
I was bullied and victimised once, I will not be again, not without a fight.
We take ownership of our own bodies and our democratic rights.
Thank you for taking the time to read this.
CONTINUE THE FIGHT, AND ENJOY YOUR VAPING.