Vaping – How it works

Smoking Versus Vaping

I trained as a smoking adviser many years ago and learnt all about giving up smoking; how to succeed.  Part of my job was to authorise the use of nicotine substitutes and as part of my group courses, we did things like meditation, to cope with the inevitable stress you used to calm you down.  Being a smoker myself (years ago now), I understood the comfort of smoking, and whereas some people are puritan once they’ve given up, I’m the opposite.  I still like the smell of cigarette smoke and know if the world would end next week.  The first thing I’d do would be to go buy, a pack of cigarettes and go out in style. What a way to go…

Now I’m not involved with stop smoking courses so much but still take an interest. Things have changed little apart from the vaping phenomenon.  So when Sam (not his real name) asked if I could get him and his wife a vape kit for Christmas.  It set me off on exploring.

image of girl in hat vapingBuying a Vape Kit

There’s a vaping shop where I live.  Inside there are huge displays of various vaping machines.  I looked at them and couldn’t figure out the difference between them all.

The people are helpful.  You could buy a kit, or a cigarette lookalike. Then decide on the fluid that goes into the vaping machine. Some people are addicted to nicotine, others love the habit of smoking (what to do with your hands, the social aspects, a break from work).

The thing is when you’re giving up smoking it’s important to consider the smoker’s habit. And, just like the old nicotine substitute tablets, you need to consider the amount of nicotine; as it depends on how addicted they are to cigarettes. I used to work this out by a) how many cigarettes someone smokes a day (although this is not so easy with tobacco and rollies,) and b) what time they had their first cigarette.


After looking carefully at each option, I decided the best would be to take photographs or even better to run a video live and ask Sam which machine or kit they preferred.  I ended up buying two.  One red, one blue. They cost round about £50 each and came with two nicotine vials each.

Top Tip: You have to be careful what you buy because the nicotine vapes are more expensive than those that just have the ‘smoke’ effect.

Then there was a further choice – what flavour vaping liquid I wanted.  I went with the,

“What’s your best seller?”

So I ended up with watermelon and something else which I can’t remember.  What I did remember though, was to tell Sam to expect the kit for him and his wife for Christmas which gave them plenty of time to consider their plan. See NHS link below about preparing to quit.

They gave up on New Year’s day.  And they haven’t gone back to smoking although I realise there is always the chance of a relapse.


I asked non-smoking Sam what the benefits were for him.

The top benefits was in saving money (£11:90 for 20 cigarettes or 69 pence each). He could smoke indoors and it stopped him putting on weight – he had put on over 2 stone the last time he attempted it.  I guess most will agree with the money argument.

If you need a reason to give up smoking. Watch this video. It is the best video I have seen on how vaping can improve a smokers health.

Further Advice and Reading

Advice from the NHS about going Smokefree

Five truths about Vaping from John Hopkins


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