Category Archives: Testimonial

Tuesday Testimonial (3)

Another example of the excellent testimonials collection.  Add yours!  (see the first post in the series if you do not know how)

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Tish

I began smoking when I was 12 years old. My friend and I would get her older brother to buy them for us. We thought we were so cool and grown up. As I progressed into high school, my habit became more severe and by sophomore year I was up to a pack a day. I told myself I was going to quit before I graduated. Near the end of my senior year, I quit for the first time. My first attempt was cold turkey. That lasted about a month and I quickly discovered that much of my addiction was psychological, not just the physical dependance on nicotine. As soon as my home life got difficult I was back smoking cigarettes.

My second attempt at quitting was a disaster. at 19 years old I decided to try nicotine patches, which resulted in dizziness, rapid heartbeat, and severe insomnia. I was back to smoking within two weeks. My third attempt was with nicotine gum, which again resulted in dizziness and rapid heartbeat, with the added bonus of making me nauseous as well.

My fourth attempt at quitting was when I was 24. I learned that I was pregnant and again decided to quit on my own, without any smoking cessation aids. I was actually fairly successful in that I stayed smoke free for the duration of my pregnancy, and for about 6 months after my daughter was born. Unfortunately, stress once again got the better of me and I was back to smoking again.

From the ages of 25 to 32, I smoked anywhere from 5 or 6 cigarettes a day to as much as a pack. Then, two years ago, my sister and her husband quit their occasional clove cigarette habit using an e-cigarette. They let me try it, and I enjoyed it but was not really convinced. After all, in my mind they weren’t really smokers. I figured it was just too good to be true. So another year went by, and my brother came to town for a visit. He told me he had quit smoking using e-cigarettes. He was using a Provari, which was the first large, advanced personal vaporizer I had ever seen. It looked like a monster. He had been a two pack a day smoker for many years and was now no longer smoking. I was surprised that it had worked so well for him and it convinced me to give it a try.

I bought a Joyetech E-Go kit at the local shop in my hometown. I told myself that if I really wanted a real cigarette I could have it. When I bought the e-cigarette I had 4 cigarettes left in my pack. I smoked one cigarette each day before I went to bed, and on the fifth day I decided not to buy any more. I haven’t smoked since. It has been 13 months since I had my last cigarette. I have upgraded from my original kit and now have an assortment of E-Go Twists, Vision Spinners, an Apollo VTube and a Vamo V2. I usually use my Vamo. I also mix my own e-liquids. It has become not just a smoking cessation device, but also a hobby that I enjoy.

I have converted quite a few people to using e-cigarettes, many of whom have also quit using traditional tobacco with them. This includes friends, co-workers and family members. These devices have been a blessing in my life. After almost 20 years of smoking, I can proudly say that I am not a smoker. I can breathe better. I can smell and taste again. I don’t smell like smoke. And, most importantly, my daughter isn’t being exposed to second-hand smoke anymore. And I will get to be around, and be healthy, when she grows up and has kids of her own. I truly believe that e-cigarettes are saving my life, and the lives of thousands of others.

Thank you for taking the time to read my story, and thank you to CASAA for all the important work you do for all of us ex-smokers and future ex-smokers.

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Tuesday Testimonial (2)

Continuing the posting of selected contributions to the CASAA THR success stories testimonial collection (more info about that in the previous post)…

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Daniel

Like most people, I picked up the habit of smoking cigarettes at a young age while still at school. Call it peer pressure, call it wanting to look cool, call it anything you want but for me it was the start of a long battle to quit.

I always said to myself that this will be the last pack and sometimes I even went as far as throwing a 3/4 full packet of smokes in the bin vowing never to smoke again. Sometimes I would last a day but most times it was only a couple of hours.
At 18 years of age I joined the army. Just before I joined I thought to myself If anything is going to make me quit it will be this, I will need to be fit, and in order to be fit I will need to quit. Well once enlisted I found myself head deep in a culture of smokers, It seemed like every second soldier was a pack a day smoker and I found it even harder to kick the habit.

My first real attempt at quitting came at the age of 23. The army sent a message out stating that if anyone wanted to give up the smokes they would supply NRT in the form of patches or gum so I jumped at the chance and took up the offer. To my surprise it didn’t work, in fact I just ended up smoking while taking the NRT. This cycle continued on and off for the next few years.

I left the army when I was 26, still a smoker and moved back home. Over the next couple of years I tried hypnosis, acupuncture, Champix, patches, nicotine gum, nicotine lozenges and continued to smoke on all of these. Nothing I tried worked.

When I was 30 years old my father was diagnosed with smoking related lung cancer and upon hearing this news, I went outside and lit a cigarette to calm myself down. As soon as I finished it, I threw the 3/4 pack of smokes in the bin once again vowing never to smoke another one. This lasted about a day and a half.

Dad fought strong for a while, and at one point the doctors thought they were winning the battle but only 6 months later I was holding his hand as he passed away peacefully in hospital. Again, I stepped outside and had a cigarette to calm myself and threw out the 3/4 packet of smokes – lasted 2 days this time.
32 days ago I was driving home when I saw a sign on a shop – “Electronic Cigarettes” so I pulled over and went inside. The guy who runs the shop spent about half an hour talking to me, showing my some gear that he had and explaining things to me in great deal. I ended up buying a start up kit which included a clearomizer, two batteries, some 12mg Nicotine E-liquid and some accessories. He told me that I should continue to smoke cigarettes for the first week while slowly transitioning into using just the E-cigarette.

Well 2 days later I was using nothing but the E-cigarette and loving it. I was amazed how it completely took away the craving. I threw out another 3/4 packet of cigarettes. This time its been 30 days and I’m still going strong. I honestly can’t imagine ever buying another packet of those cancer causing death sticks.

In the month that I have been vaping I have converted my best friend, my mother in law and 2 work colleagues and am more that happy to convince others to give it a shot as this is the ONLY thing that has worked for me. I have upgraded to a VAMO VW VV device and am still on the 12mg nicotine liquid. My plan is to slowly drop down in nicotine strength over the next 12 months but I feel at ease knowing that I am not inhaling 4000 chemicals while I do it.
I feel as though the vendor that I spoke to 32 days ago has saved my life, without seeing his shop while driving home I would still be smoking today, so thanks Phil. I feel better, I smell better, I am sleeping better and waking up easier and its only been 1 month! I cant wait to see how much better I feel in 6 months!

This is my story.

Tuesday Testimonial (1)

As many of you know, CASAA has been collecting testimonials from people who have succeeded with THR, quitting smoking (or cutting waaay down) by substituting e-cigarettes, smokeless tobacco, or other low-risk alternatives.  These are people’s own stories, in their own words, and provide a powerful testament to the benefits and effectiveness of THR.  This collection has already been used in policy advocacy and we expect that it will play an important role in future efforts to defend THR — stories like these are real scientific evidence, and are just a lot more compelling than statistics in policy debates.

[For those who do not know about this collection, and have such a story, please go to http://fluidsurveys.com/s/THR-testimonial-CASAA/ and add your story to the collection.  And if you have already done so or are not someone who personally benefited from THR, please consider taking a minute and pointing people toward this post or that link — we have nearly 600 testimonials so far, but our goal is 1000.]

We will make the whole collection browsable, but we realize that few are going to want to just thumb through hundreds of stories.  So we have decided to start posting about one a week here.  Today’s was chosen because its content is typical of a lot of the stories, and also because it is short but still very compelling (some are ten times as long, and go into amazing and fascinating detail — again, we want whatever version of the story someone wants to tell).  For those of you who have hesitated to contribute your story because it seemed too daunting to try to tell it all, this should demonstrate how you can tell a compelling story in just a few paragraphs.

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Gabe from Los Angeles

Short and sweet: I started smoking when I was 16. By the time I was 18 I was good and hooked. I smoked a pack a day, give or take, since then. I started trying to quit seriously in my late 20’s — I tried every single doctor recommended product on the market. Chantix, Bupropion, the patch, the gum, the inhaler, cutting down, cold turkey, juice cleanses, counseling, everything. Nothing worked.

About 2 years ago, I got one of the first e-cigarettes on the market. It wasn’t great, and after it broke I gave it up as another failure. I had come to terms with the fact that I was hopelessly addicted to nicotine, and that I was going to likely end up with a shortened life span and serious health problem. I couldn’t afford patches or more medical interventions that didn’t work in the long term. When I found out that a new generation of e-cigarettes were on the market that delivered better results, I figured I would try them without much hope of success.

After a few weeks of mainly smoking cigarettes and using the e-cigarette just a bit, I switched over to mainly using the e-cigarette. After a few weeks of switching back and forth with primarily the e-cigarette, I decided to cut out cigarettes even further. For the first time in my life, I was able to do so without anxiety, deep depression, mood swings, and an extreme feeling of “fuzziness” in my thinking. Over the past 3 months, I’ve smoked 3 cigarettes. I’m healthy, I feel great, and I’m finally done with the tobacco.

This is a wonderful product, one that actually works in reducing harm substantially, and one that has helped me to personally stop smoking cigarettes. I know that people want to regulate them or just don’t have the information to make a good choice on it. I implore anybody who wants to have a knee jerk regulatory reaction or judgement to please, think of the people like me who have not been able to quit any other way. We’re real, we’re being helped daily by this. It’s life changing.