I’ve been around smokers my entire life. My mom smoked. My dad smoked. And all the techs at my first HVAC company smoked. This post is about the alternative, the health effects, and the possibility of quitting.
Even though smoking is on the decline, the tradesperson still smokes 1.5 times more than the average worker. There are alternatives to smoking, such as vaping.
Vaping can be a great assistant in the battle to quit smoking, yet it has it’s downsides as well.
8 Reasons Techs Should Stop Smoking.
#1 – Heart Disease
The #1 killer in the US is heart disease. Smoking is the leading cause of heart disease. RELATED: Killing the Service Tech.
I’m no doctor, but this is how smoking causes heart disease:
- Inflammation. It starts here. Inflammation is like a rash on the inside of your arteries and veins.
- Plaque. When your blood vessels get irritated, cholesterol coats the inside walls. In a weird way, it’s like internal lotion on irritated skin. The problem is, it hardens. Then BOOM!
- Narrows arteries
- Raises blood pressure
- Damages heart tissues
- Heart attack!
If you’re lucky, you might miss the heart disease. Then, you have lung cancer to look forward to.
#2 – Lung Cancer
Lung Cancer is the #2 killer in the US. It is right behind heart disease.
9 out of 10 lung cancers are caused by smoking. Think about that!
And the cancer doesn’t stop at the lungs. Smoking causes many other types of cancer, including cancers of the throat, mouth, nasal cavity, esophagus, stomach, pancreas, kidney, bladder, and cervix, as well as acute myeloid leukemia.
#3 – Your Kids
And the worst part of smoking is that smoking causes cancer in others as well.
Second hand smoke is a real problem with kids. Roughly 18% of the kids in the US live with a smoker. This causes a slew of problems which include: asthma, bronchitis, pneumonia, and ear infections.
According to the CDC somewhere between 7,000 to 15,000 kids are hospitalized annually because of second hand smoke.
#4 – Your Sex Life
Smoking kills off the small blood vessels in the body. Do you know where a lot of those blood vessel exist?
Yep. So, many men suffer erectile disfunction caused by smoking. And many women experience a reduced sex drive caused by smoking.
#5 – Smell
Cigarettes stink. And no amount of deodorant or cologne will cover the stench of a smoker.
Odorless use is a huge benefit of vaping. It can be completely and totally odorless. This is a win for the Tech, Client, and the Team.
Now, some vape users trash the benefits of the odorless option of vaping.
There are a million different choices out there for vape flavors. I get why you’d want to enjoy them on your free time. But, there is a downside.
Vaping isn’t seen in a positive light by non-smokers.
In fact, non-smokers don’t like vaping any more than they like smoking. And, vaping can still trigger asthma symptoms for many people.
Vaping also has a negative image. No offense to you that vape, but vaping’s image is linked with the drug and punk culture.
So, if you go into the home smelling like flavored vape fluid, then the client is going to know you are a vape user. Your best option is to go odorless while on the job. And for goodness sake, don’t do it in front of your client.
#6 – Cost
Let’s look at the cost of smoking.
A pack a day smoker will spend:
- $42 a week
- $2,184 a year
- $10,631 to $13,404 a month when he starts treatment for lung cancer. (9 out 10 chance, remember?)
Vaping isn’t free either, but the average vape user will spend:
- $100 on a good vaporizer
- $548 a year in vapor fluid
- $XXX *the medical effects of vaping are still under study.
So, there is a big savings by switching to vaping. However, the best saving is to not do either.
#7 – Addiction Control
Nicotine is an evil drug. And quitting nicotine is far harder than the non-user understands. The Henningfield rating system is used to describe the addictive nature of drugs.
Here are the top 6 drugs for a reference:
- Nicotine: 1 – Most Additive in terms of Dependency
- Heroine: 2
- Cocaine: 3
- Alcohol: 4
- Caffeine: 5
- Marijuana: 6 – Least Additive in terms of Dependency
The bottomline is that nicotine is super addictive and super hard to quit.
And, this could be the greatest benefit, or downfall of vaping.
E-cigarettes and the fluids you smoke are not yet governed by the FDA.
That means two things:
- You don’t really know what they are putting into the vapor fluid.
You don’t know if they are being consistent in quality or quantity.
- This could mean that you are smoking far more nicotine than is labeled on the package. It could also mean you are smoking other harmful chemicals.
This lack of control is why the FDA, and doctors, will still recommend approved methods like patches and gum. (And, they probably know what they are talking about.)
I suspect that the fluid will soon be under FDA control, and you can expect 3 things will occur when that happens:
- Tighter quality control.
- Increase in cost through “sin taxes.”
- More research that is paid for by those taxes.
Even though I can’t prove it, and neither can you, I suspect that vaping is still better for your health than smoking. And I know that clean air is the healthiest choice.
#8 – Quitting
This should be the goal of a smoker or a vape user. To quit.
For many smokers, vaping is more than a baby step to quitting, it is a giant leap! Before vaping, quitting was much more difficult.
Smokers were limited to: patches, gums, therapists, and sheer will power. Those things do nothing for the habitual nature of “taking a drag.”
Vaping has made quitting a reality for so many smokers. Many smokers have told me that vaping was the only way they could quit smoking. And, most of my friends that vape have told me they plan on quitting vaping as well. I suspect that once it is under FDA control, then vaping will be a great tool for doctors and smokers in the fight to quit.