Over the course of 6 months, we supported 4 EDGE volunteers, who decided they wanted to quit or reduce their smoking habits, using vaping as an alternative. You can learn more about the trial itself here, or head over to our success stories page where you can see a snapshot of real people’s experiences using EDGE products on their cessation journey.
If you are considering stopping or reducing your smoking, and are unsure if vaping is the right option for you, then check out our guide Finding The Right Alternative, where you can explore impartial information about vaping and other alternatives such as nicotine replacement therapy and medications.
If you’ve decided that you want to give vaping a go, then our New to Vaping page is worth a visit to get yourself familiarised with the kinds of products on offer, and advice on how to tailor those choices to your personal journey.
Liam was worried that vaping might not work for him, and had concerns about his diabetes too. Despite this he knew he wanted to try anything to quit smoking, as it worried him even more – He decided to try making the switch with EDGE and ended up becoming one of our success stories! Check out his experience below.
MEET OUR CHAMPION - LIAM
Getting Used to Vaping
Liam wasn’t sure vaping would be a good fit for him when he set out on his journey. Like many of us on our first steps, he felt it would simply be too alien to ever be as satisfying as smoking. Once he gave it a try though he quickly found Very Menthol GO pods to be a great alternative, providing a familiar menthol flavour to the cigarettes he wanted to leave behind.
By his own admission, Liam doesn’t have much of a sweet tooth, so he didn’t bother with any other flavours, he kept it simple which worked well for him. He chose to use 6mg pods for the most part, but when cravings hit harder, he would swap up to 12mg to help manage them and return to 6 again once that urge had passed.
“It's the replacement of the menthol cigarettes. I don't have a sweet tooth anyway. I've tried other flavours from friend's standard e-liquids before but a bit overwhelming for my taste buds.”
“I carry both 6mg and 12mg on me. If I crave a cigarette, I tend to have 12mg. If it's more of a routine occasion/habitual occasion, then I have 6mg. I still feel 12mg is strong, but I think it helps satisfy the stronger cravings.”
Liam’s Biggest Challenge
In truth, Liam’s biggest initial challenge was his own willpower. He simply didn’t think that making the switch would work. Other vaping devices he had seen before felt too big and cumbersome, and other e-liquid flavours he had tried in friends vapes were too overpowering for his taste. When the various social situation where he would normally smoke arose, he was concerned vaping might not satisfy.
“I didn't know how I would take to vaping, and I was stubborn that it wouldn't work.”
“Embracing vaping on habitual smoking occasions. E.g. smoking at home didn't feel habitual, but when there were times where I felt "this is a time to go for a cig" then these were harder. E.g. before work, at lunch”
He was also concerned that combining quitting smoking with other lifestyle changes like diet and exercise might be a lot to take on at once, but this was also a source of motivation, he wanted to really push for a positive change – a very admirable effort!
“It was because of the health concerns had before I started on Switch With EDGE. It's made it easier as there were other things I needed to change like exercising more, watching what I was eating, so made it easier to accomplish cutting back cigarettes”
“I wasn't sure if vaping was worse for diabetics, but the research EDGE shared with me after made me feel that vaping is alright.”
Once he had experimented with the EDGE GO however, he quickly found the flexibility of moving between strengths to satisfy different cravings alleviated a lot of the pressure and allowed him to adapt.
“I would say that I didn't take to vaping immediately, but the more I did and the more it satisfied cravings the more confident I was in vaping as a means to quit smoking.”
How Switch with EDGE compared to previous attempts to quit
Liam had attempted to quit on six previous occasions, but he had never used a quitting aid, he had always gone cold turkey. This approach works for some, but is very extreme and leaves most of us contending with powerful cravings.
Without a decent alternative to manage these, Liam found it was easy to slip back into old habits, despite managing to go for a month without smoking during one of his attempts, but found it alienated him socially.
“During that month, I avoided situations where I might reach for a cigarette, whereas now I don't need to avoid them because I have a vape. I didn't socialise as much from quitting cold turkey was a negative side effect. I changed my life, but with a vape I can still do all of the things I would want to do.”
“It was easy to slip back into the habit. This was probably because I didn't have a substitution, but I do when vaping with EDGE.”
“It seemed more was required of me in previous quit attempts. More effort / an extra action. With vaping and using the device I have, there was less effort needed to go into quitting.”
His doubts about vaping even made it hard to find the same satisfaction from vaping at first, but with perseverance, that has started to change, and Liam now enjoys vaping – something he never thought possible.
“With EDGE, the barriers were different to when I tried to quit cold turkey. That was all about willpower, which made it harder to be successful. With EDGE there were more options like going up to 12mg to help with the stronger cravings.”
“The device itself is really easy - plug in and go. The size (vs some of the really big vaping devices) means it doesn't feel too different to smoking. Learning more about the differences / similarities between smoking and vaping through EDGE and my experience of switching, and questions/education relating to diabetes helped me too.”
Ultimately Liam was able to overcome his doubts. With plenty of self-motivation and some support from those around him he has been able to make a positive change. He has not managed to quit smoking entirely yet, but has made a massive reduction which is an amazing step on his journey.
“I’m at about 70% vaping, 30% smoking. Definitely over last 2 months. I feel quite comfortable at this balance now. Remaining steady is an achievement as I was quite stubborn that I didn't think vaping would be successful, but it's definitely brought down my consumption of cigarettes.”
“I don't have to rely on smoking when stressed (because I can vape). I can smoke less. Vaping is a good substitute for me.”
“I was open about why I was switching from smoking to vaping, but in the past people may have thought 'oh he'll just do what he wants'. It was good to be reminded by others what my motivations were (diabetes diagnosis).”
Liam even told us that he had started to notice some extra benefits since making the switch!
“Financially I've noticed a benefit. I find it easier to sleep. We don't know what's in cigarettes and maybe there's something in it that makes sleeping harder?”
Liam’s advice to others
“Setting a reasonable goal was helpful, do what you can, as I know from my past doing too much makes it unachievable Try to make the journey as natural as possible. I don't have any timeline plans, just will let it happen as it happens.”
“Don't be afraid to tell people that your switching / quitting. When I went outside with others, they were supportive and suggested I should vape instead of smoke.”
“Speak to someone who knows about vaping to get some questions answered. Being able to speak to EDGE was really helpful. Find what strength/device suits you - there are different options, and the first option might not be perfect for you.”