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  1. #31
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    Quote Originally Posted by Tiltyred View Post
    I'm not concerned about getting off the gum. As long as I'm not smoking, I don't care if I chew the gum till I die.
    Lol.

    Quote Originally Posted by jixmixfix View Post
    I think nicotine itself is still harmful and I'm almost certain that drug lowers IQ.
    Nah.

    In your typical cigarette, here’s how tar and nicotine work together:

    Tar provides the taste/flavor and the harmful (cancer-causing) elements;
    Nicotine provides the addictive element and acts as a mild stimulant

    Take out the tars, and what you have left is nicotine: highly addictive, but otherwise a harmless mild stimulant.

    When nicotine gums and patches first came out, you could only obtain them by prescription: Nicotine is so highly addictive that everyone assumed it must be harmful as well.

    But now nicotine can be obtained OTC and is pretty much uncontrolled (I think you have to be 18 years old to buy it). Health authorities still don’t want kids to get hold of it because of its high addictiveness and expense; but as of five years ago when I last checked, long-term medical studies showed that nicotine use alone didn’t result in any harmful health effects.

    So some people go ahead and chew the gum for its quick stimulant effect. It gives a noticeable boost like a little cup of coffee. But it’s kind of expensive, and like any addictive drug you have to wean yourself off it gradually if you decide that you're tired of paying for such a habit.

    As for me: It was great for getting off cigarettes. When I used it in place of cigarettes, I missed the flavor of cigarettes, but my health improved instantly since I wasn’t clogging my lungs with tar. Meantime I didn’t experience any withdrawal symptoms from the lack of cigarettes since I could have all the nicotine I wanted via the gum.

    Five years later I was still perfectly healthy with the gum, but I knew that I really didn’t need such an expensive habit anymore. So I took about a year and weaned myself off the gum slowly. I chewed nicotine gums at specific times of the day, and then every few weeks I would knock out one gum-chewing session or substitute cinnamon gum for the nicotine gum.

    These days I’m still prone to chew on a toothpick occasionally. And cigarettes still smell good to me when I pass a smoker. Sometimes I just want to be near a lit cigarette and enjoy the scent and the memories. But cigarettes (and gum) just aren’t part of my self-picture anymore; I couldn’t seriously imagine picking a cigarette up and lighting it and returning to all the negative burdens that come with those things.

  2. #32
    Senior Member prplchknz's Avatar
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    ^ yes you do have to be 18 to buy patches and gum i bought patches once in a self delusional adventure thinking i was going to quit, and they id'ed me
    In no likes experiment.

    that is all

    i dunno what else to say so

  3. #33
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    Quote Originally Posted by prplchknz View Post
    ^ yes you do have to be 18 to buy patches and gum i bought patches once in a self delusional adventure thinking i was going to quit, and they id'ed me
    Thanks for the confirmation.

    I tried the patch for a while. But I thought it was a hassle to keep playing with those things, and so the patch always ended in failure for me.

    The gum was easier. No matter how bad I was craving a smoke, I could take care of it by popping more gum into my mouth. Sometimes I was chewing five or six pieces of gum at a time. Whatever works.

  4. #34
    Senior Member Tiltyred's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Wolfie View Post
    When I quit smoking, it was easy because I never felt any addiction even while I was a smoker. I simply stopped. Now I only smoke them when I am in a situation in which a cigarette would be irresistible. Which is when drinking.

    So I guess what I recommend is paying attention to when you really, really can't resist a cigarette, and then figure out creative ways to keep yourself from smoking for each of those situations. But really it will just come down to willpower. You have to remind yourself that you have control over your actions, and you can direct your mind, not be a slave to it.
    I hate to sound like ... whatever it is I'm about to sound like ... but this is how addiction starts. "I only really want a cigarette when I'm drinking." "I only really want a cigarette after dinner." If you ever really want a cigarette at all, you're already in trouble and it will get worse. It tends not to stay at the same level -- it is carefully designed to escalate. It does so almost imperceptibly. Five years down the road, you could find yourself coughing and hacking and smoking a pack a day. I know it doesn't seem that way now and you may scoff at this, but I hope you don't. I hope you just stop smoking at all, ever.

  5. #35
    Senior Member Wolfie's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Tiltyred View Post
    I hate to sound like ... whatever it is I'm about to sound like ... but this is how addiction starts. "I only really want a cigarette when I'm drinking." "I only really want a cigarette after dinner." If you ever really want a cigarette at all, you're already in trouble and it will get worse. It tends not to stay at the same level -- it is carefully designed to escalate. It does so almost imperceptibly. Five years down the road, you could find yourself coughing and hacking and smoking a pack a day. I know it doesn't seem that way now and you may scoff at this, but I hope you don't. I hope you just stop smoking at all, ever.
    Yes, I agree. I wasn't advocating, just sharing my personal experience. I have never experienced addiction to cigarettes, even after smoking for a total of two years, but that is uncommon.
    ( . )( . )

  6. #36
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    Quote Originally Posted by Wolfie View Post
    Yes, I agree. I wasn't advocating, just sharing my personal experience. I have never experienced addiction to cigarettes, even after smoking for a total of two years, but that is uncommon.
    People have different levels of addict-ability.

    With smoking, the theory is as follows:

    Nicotine is a mild stimulant. Some people are borderline depressed, and they use the stimulant effect of nicotine in their cigarettes to medicate themselves into a better mood, i.e., they use that nicotine boost to power them through the day. So they are going to tend to be more heavily addicted. Take away their cigarettes, and they are going to continue to crave (feel the absense of) that helpful nicotine stimulant for weeks, months, or even years.

    By comparison, other people don’t specifically need the stimulant effect of their cigarettes. Their mood is probably fine or at least doesn't bounce around a whole lot. They’re just smoking for the taste, and they don’t necessarily get much from the stimulant boost. So they can quit relatively easily. Once they get over the hump on the nicotine addiction itself (about 3-5 days), they don’t particularly miss the nicotine boost. Effectively, they can take cigarettes or leave them.

    Looking at the first group again (borderline depressed and deeply in need of a long-term stimulant boost): One smoking-cessation strategy involves seeing a doctor and getting put on a mild anti-depressant so that the quitting smoker won't need the stimulant effect provided by the cigarettes. But then you have to play around with finding the best anti-depressant, dosing strategies, and how long to stay on the anti-depressant. A lot of people don’t want to do that; I didn’t.

    In my case, I basically self-medicated with the nicotine gum and played around with the dosing of the nicotine stimulant myself. I used the nicotine gum and just let enough time go by to effectively “grow out of” the smoking habit. After a while I just didn’t see cigarettes as something I needed anymore.

  7. #37
    Senior Member Tiltyred's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Wolfie View Post
    Yes, I agree. I wasn't advocating, just sharing my personal experience. I have never experienced addiction to cigarettes, even after smoking for a total of two years, but that is uncommon.
    It is not uncommon. It happens that way for many people. It doesn't mean you have escaped becoming addicted. If you really want to smoke under any circumstances, you should stop smoking entirely now. The fact that you really want to smoke at any time means you are susceptible to really wanting to smoke at other times.

  8. #38
    Senior Member prplchknz's Avatar
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    I smoked casually for 3 years than bam! major addiction i go through a pack a day. I kinda know i should stop, but i don't want to. i always found smoking sexy even as a kid i found it sexy. but i'm in the minority, i wouldn't get a kid addicted to it though, because the addicted part sucks, i really wish i could start and stop, but i know once i stop i have to for good. and i'm not ready for that commitment.
    In no likes experiment.

    that is all

    i dunno what else to say so

  9. #39
    Senior Member Wolfie's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Tiltyred View Post
    It is not uncommon. It happens that way for many people. It doesn't mean you have escaped becoming addicted. If you really want to smoke under any circumstances, you should stop smoking entirely now. The fact that you really want to smoke at any time means you are susceptible to really wanting to smoke at other times.
    That's true generally. For me personally, it is not true. I have been a non-smoker for almost two years. I may have a cigarette when I have a drink, rarely, because I like to pair them. That has never led me to smoke at other times. Actually, I find it quite disgusting at other times.
    ( . )( . )

  10. #40
    Senior Member Tiltyred's Avatar
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    May it stay forever that way for you!

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