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Every time I hear someone refer to smoking as a bad habit, it irritates me. Make no mistake about it, smoking is not a habit . . . it is an addiction . . . and calling it by a name that makes it appear comparatively innocuous, less harmful, less dirty, or just plain less evil than it actually is, is dangerous and can prove fatal to you and to others! Ingesting nicotine by any means is harmful. Regardless of whether you smoke, chew tobacco, dip snuff, or chew nicotine gum, you are courting a lady far more dangerous than Mata Hari. The addictive ability of nicotine is on a par with Crack Cocaine.
My favored form of nicotine ingestion was smoking and it hooked me for 53+ years. I have a friend who used nicotine gum to kick the smoking habit and has been hooked on that for 23 years. Now considering the fact that the use of nicotine gum beyond 12 weeks is considered long-term or excessive use . . . do you still doubt the addictive ability of nicotine in any form? Having been addicted to nicotine for 53 years, having lost a brother and a sister-in-law to lung cancer, having watched a friend lose his father to emphysema caused by smoking, having suffered and nearly died from a severe heart attack myself brought on by prolonged nicotine use, and still dealing with an aortic aneurism likely caused by prolonged nicotine use, I feel perfectly qualified and justified to throw stones at nicotine use. As an individual who can now refer to himself as a recovering nicotine addict, I feel qualified to tell you that YOU CAN also become a recovering nicotine addict.
I refer to myself as a recovering nicotine addict because as with any other addiction, it will only take one use of my preferred drug (nicotine) to set my recovery back . . . possibly to day 1 again. Therefor I will proudly refer to myself as a recovering nicotine addict until the day I die! Here is the key to becoming a recovering nicotine addict rather than a current nicotine addict: you need to understand nicotine withdrawal. The urges brought-on by nicotine withdrawal are recurring. How frequently these withdrawal incidents occur, how long they last, and how strong they are when they occur depend on several things: (1) How long you used nicotine, (2) How heavily you used nicotine, (3) How long since your last use of nicotine.
Now here are some things (keys if you will), that work in your favor i.e. important pieces of factual knowledge. Here is important piece #1 of that knowledge: The nicotine withdrawal incident will go away whether you ingest nicotine or not. I use to believe that you had to light-up or ingest nicotine in some form to stop the nicotine craving – I have learned that this is simply not true at all. Here is important piece #2 of that knowledge: as the number of days since your last ingestion of nicotine increases, the frequency, strength, and duration of withdrawal incidents decrease. Here is important piece of knowledge #3: YOU CAN LEAVE YOUR NICOTINE ADDICTION IN THE PAST regardless of how long you used nicotine or how heavily you used nicotine. I am living proof that YOU CAN! I was a nicotine addict for 53+ years and smoked anywhere from a pack a day to 3 packs a day over that time-frame and I quit cold turkey. Only you can convince yourself that you cannot do it and only you can use the common sense you were born with and look at me and say “If TheOldPhart could do this, I can do it too” . . . and YOU CAN!
Believe in yourself as much as I believe in you. I will guarantee you that if you really want to break free from your nicotine addiction, YOU CAN!
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