The choice of nicotine level is a determining factor in successful smoking cessation. However, many vapers do not use the dosage that suits them. As a result, they take the risk of giving up their e-cigarette and starting to smoke again. We are therefore going to even set some key rules so as not to be mistaken.
A note on nicotine
The first mistake an apprentice vaper can make is to confuse, as the media often do, tobacco and nicotine. Admittedly, nicotine is found in cigarettes, and it is this molecule that creates addiction, but it is not the nicotine that kills millions of smokers. The danger of tobacco lies in the hundreds of other substances contained in the smoke, foremost among which are carbon monoxide and tar.
The goal when you quit smoking is to get rid of all these substances harmful to health while meeting your nicotine needs as well as possible. This is also the role of nicotine substitutes, whether you find them in pharmacies (patches, chewing gum, etc.) or an electronic cigarette store. We must therefore not be in the wrong fight: the enemy is tobacco, not nicotine.
The complexity of addiction
Another mistake a novice vaper can make is misjudging their nicotine addiction. It may sound illogical, but someone who smokes five cigarettes a day can sometimes be as addicted as someone who smokes a pack. It can be explained by a phenomenon of compensation, which means that a smoker will tend to take stronger and more frequent puffs to meet his nicotine needs. A phenomenon scientifically demonstrated through so-called “light” cigarettes which caused at least as much damage as “classic” cigarettes. They have since been banned.
The complexity of nicotine addiction also comes from the fact that it is multifactorial. It is first of all physical (the body demands its dose of nicotine), but also psychological (it makes it possible to respond to a state of stress). This second factor, therefore, implies a possible variation in your needs. You will have to take it into account and do not hesitate to adapt your rate accordingly.
The importance of the “hit” provided by The e-cigarette
When you inhale the vapor produced by an electronic cigarette, you feel what is called the “hit”, a scratching sensation in the throat that is similar to that which you can have when you smoke. This hit is influenced directly by nicotine and its strength depends entirely on your level. Choosing the right nicotine dosage is therefore equivalent to finding the hit that suits us. If it is too weak, you will feel like you have no sensation and suck in flavored air. Conversely, if it is too strong, you will feel an irritation in your throat which will make you cough.
Generally, smokers who switch to e-cigarettes cough for a few days. As we have just seen, the nicotine level can be the cause, but not only. It can also be due to poor inhaling technique (puffs should be soft and slow) or damage was already done by smoking to your airways. In this case, the sooner you quit smoking, the sooner the irritation caused by tobacco will disappear.
Take the time
As you will have understood, there is no ready-made answer that will allow you to find the nicotine level that suits you. It is therefore very important to take your time to find the dosage that most effectively meets your needs. You can also do a quick online test that will allow you to better measure your addiction. Depending on your result and/or your consumption. We suggest getting started from the lowest level. Then you try a higher level until you find the best fit.
It should be noted that this is theoretical advice that will have to be tested in practice. If you feel a feeling of lack in your day that cannot be satisfied by the vape, it is because you need a higher dosage. So don’t hesitate or wait for it to pass, your smoking cessation depends on it! At the risk of repeating ourselves, the enemy is tobacco and the nicotine contained in your e-liquid is your solution to get rid of it.
The case of heavy smokers
Due to the TPD vape enshrined in the EU in May 2016, nicotine levels in e-liquids are limited to 20 mg/ml. A threshold that does not look like much, but which turns out to be insufficient for some heavy smokers. However, several solutions are available to them. They can, for example, combine the electronic cigarette with another nicotine substitute, such as patches or chewing gum. A combination that does not present any danger even if it is advisable to speak to your doctor about it.
They can also turn to nicotine salts e-juice or disposable vapes. Although limited to 20 mg/ml, these e-liquids make it possible to fill the lack more quickly and are therefore more effective. High levels of nicotine salts are also less irritating to the throat than “classic” nicotine. They thus cause less potential discomfort when vaping.
Choosing the right electronic cigarette
The last step to choosing the right nicotine level, make sure it suits your equipment. Some OEM vape are indeed more powerful than others as they come from different vape manufacturer, which impacts nicotine delivery. To simplify, the more this power will be important and the more the rate of nicotine will have to be low.
However, when we are trying to quit, it is better to start with equipment designed for beginner vapers.
When to reduce the nicotine level of your e-liquid?
Once you have finally gotten rid of your last cigarettes, you often try to lower your nicotine level. A legitimate desire, but it can be risky. By lowering the dosage too quickly, we can indeed find ourselves in a state of craving which can lead us straight to our former tobacconist. We must therefore go very gradually. And if we feel that our needs are not sufficiently met, we return directly to our starting rate, without asking questions. It’s not a race and the victory represented by stopping smoking is already more than enough!