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Out of the frying pan, into the fire

Hello Snuffhouse!
As a recent lurker this forum has provided me with some pretty important information, but thats just at a cursory glance.

I recognize snuff as an important tool, as a former cigarette smoker trying to quit, and Ive tried everything. Im appreciative in a large way, Ive recently journeyed into every facet of tobacco. I now love cigars, I own and am trying to master a pipe, I even use snus and copenhagen. Hell I still have a metric ton of nicorette, I made the jump several times with that this year. And perhaps it was important, any time I quit with another type of tobacco, I too badly wanted it to be cigs. In any case, by far the most effective product that will almost assuredly improve a craving in the worst times, is snuff.

BUT theres a catch. I LOVE cigarettes, and tobacco. Snuff almost seems to be more intense than cigarettes, and more addictive. But its not fun, its compulsive. And I routinely have made my palms sweaty and heart palpitate and basically feel like Ive used cocaine. For those who have never had the pleasure, Id say its surprisingly, frightengly, similar. Now, Ive never enjoyed that much or had a problem with cocaine. Tobacco and all of its brilliant alkaloids, on the other hand, I thoroughly enjoy. I have actually already dumped a tin out to keep myself from using it; I used snuff for the first time a week ago.

Now, I did become resonably tolerant over that time period, and Im fairly young, 28, and tend to over concern myself with health issues. But I do believe I know what my body tells me, unfortunately in this case its two different things. I chainsmoked, 2 packs a day but thats really a conservative estimate. Cigarettes can be continuously smoked, without feeling too amped up. Ive never experienced anything like this in my life. Every other stimulant other than caffeine has been too strong for my taste, but compulsive, so I choose to not use it. Nicotine I thought for sure was safe, if I get too much I just feel kind of sick, and I can power through any amount of nic! IM THE KING OF DA LEAF!

I wonder now if this is not in fact the case. I did procure some WE Garrett just recently, Ive only had mentholated McChrystals before this. I havent broken into it yet, still just smoking a cigar with my wine. But since I did get alcohol, I also got some snuff, since I had a very close call with cigarettes last time I imbibed. I plan to only use it as a last resort, although it already has sounded good from the moment I found a store that stocked it.

So, my questions are many, and Ive rambled too much about my personal experience and not asked about the myriad health issues that concern me. The effects on the heart I should think are something Id wonder about even if you all assured me there was no concern. And also, it seems difficult to imagine that no snuff can possibly reach the brain or lungs, especially if someone has a proclivity to overindulge. Being that this is insoluble plant material, and a plant that causes a host of problems in EVERY OTHER FORM, I just find it hard to believe theres not more cause for concern.

All this being said, I truly have no choice whether or not snuff is in my life in some form or another because its on my mind. And Id desperately like to not smoke again, I feel too healthy. So, is this a learning curve? Am I going to adjust and find it much less of a strong drug? Settle into looking at it like just another alternative I may or may not use that day? Because, too much of anything is not a good deal, and even if snuff is in fact relatively safe, I'll find a way to keep it from being as such.



  • count yourself lucky. Most peoples learning curve with snuff involves learning it will actually work, instead of to tone it back a bit.
  • Scotches (WE G) are strong snuffs and medication (menthol et al) should theoretically increase uptake. Try some of the Toques (beside USA Whiskey&Honey and Ambrosia) for more middle of the road snuff strengths. It might irritate your nose less too, though for some of us the feel is an upside :)
  • volungevolunge Member
    edited September 2019 PM
    @KortKant. If you are in the need of nicotine (already addicted to it), I can confirm that nic-wise snuff is capable to replace any other form of tobacco. Be aware tho, it's highly addictive with all the subsequent consequences. It will bind down your mind and change your behaviour.

    Better don't start, if you can. Well, obviously, you can switch to it, but you really don't need to. If you already stopped smoking and health issues are your concern, I wouldn't advice jumping into a snuff train. It's a nicotine express, my friend. Going fast to nowhere, it doesn't stop on it's own.
  • Well volunge, you make a valid point, in fact you've voiced the opinion of my own conscience. The concern of that being the truth, that I ought to just stay away because IT IS that good. My issue, however, is had I not found snuff I may very well have returned to smoking. I wanted to eliminate all possible continuing health risks(save for nicotine's pancreas confusing properties), so I used Nicorette.  Around the 30 day mark each time, and its been a few times, Ive realized it wasnt enough.  It got me through a month, but the MAOI properties, or whatever it is nicotine by itself lacks, kept me from comfortably going any step further.  As I gain more time feeling like Im actually living a life instead of a non-cigarette nightmare, I feel more desperate to keep my progress, even at the expense of increased olfactory risk.  Ive recently begun taking Lithium, and it has helped me with mood issues that likely led to me having an addiction to tobacco in the first place, but I mention that only to elucidate the delicacy of my situation mentally/emotionally; a no holds barred quit attempt is just too jarring.  And even NRT for a month doesnt free me so much as it reminds me of lack.  I fully understand this process takes time, but I need to break so many mental associations with cigarettes I feel it is acceptable to be using so many other forms of tobacco, because I know they wont all stick, and hope that none will stick as tightly as cigs did.  Plus, I have life going on. I need to perform at my job and in my schooling. I cant afford to be going completely nuts just for the sake of using no tobacco or nicotine at all.
  • volungevolunge Member
    edited September 2019 PM
    Thanks for shedding more light on the situation. Knowing you are still in a transition, I can share my experience. To make story shorter, I was a smoker and was indulging in smokeless tobacco too, exploring just about everything within my reach, including vaping (in my last smoking year). Then finally I realised I'm not enjoying smoking anymore, but still dig smokeless. Combining snus (while in public) and nasal snuff (mostly at home), I managed to stop smoking abruptly, yet painlessly. Basically, I just switched to snus and nasal snuff.

    Now to the key point. I find snus much better cigarette replacement than nasal snuff. It's more discreet, less messy and keeps calm for so much longer.

    I was a smoker for 18 years, stopped smoking in the end of 2015 (though not sure about the year anymore). Still using nasal snuff (daily), snus and some other oral tobacco forms (on occasion). I consider myself a nicotine addict.
  • excellent advice from @volunge that I can only second. The best thing is not to start at all.  Snuff is extremely addictive and your priorities will shift around it when you are addicted to it.  Not to hijack the thread but I am an addict too.  We all love snuff here and love to share in the experience and comraderie of a common passion, but the fun and culture of snuffing is more of a superficial gloss on top of the basic reality that it is addictive and addictions are not recommended for a healthful and thriving life.  @KortKant snuff gets my heart racing in a worrysome way quite often.  Especially when I take a snuff with surprising strength like MG Madras.  I don't know that there is really a way to even quantify how snuff could be "relatively safe" compared to smoking.  The fact is that it is not safe and there are risks.  There is not enough data out there to justify the conclusion that it is a reasonably safe or relatively safe alternative to smoking.  Naswar users in Afghanistan suffer very high rates of mouth and throat cancer which suggests the risk of smokeless tobacco use is not insignificant.  The ingredients in Naswar are not that different than those found in nasal snuff in general, so the burden is definitely on the advocate of nasal snuff to demonstrate safety rather than the skeptic to demonstrate danger.  My advice is to not start if you can, and seriously consider quitting if you've started.
  • if nicotine helps snuff is probably the safest way to go.... Or Snus. I understand nicotine being an essential vitamin and stablizer for mental health issues. I'll put it this way if you can't say no it's better to say yes to snuff or snus then anything you need to burn.
  • and even though it takes some digging there is medical literature about snuff and snus available that you might want to take the time to find and read, or even drop on your doctor (some will actually really read this, like the way a few had a jaw drop during check ups at my statement that I am a full blown constant nicotine addict who won't even take the snus out during an exam so......
  • I dunno I feel like your over thinking it man, get the nicotine you need and carry on. In the words of John Goodman, " I drink, but I don't get drunk" same thing applies here, anything can be abused. And moderation is what's needed. I snuff because I like to and I want to. And I'm getting the nicotine I need. I'm not trying to melt my face off every time I do it. There's a certain amount of finess that's needed with anything.
  • KortKantKortKant Member
    edited September 2019 PM
    Well, Im definitely settling into more of a varied pattern. Each form of tobacco seems to give its own version of the buzz, and I no longer feel like Im missing 'the one', being cigarettes. Now its just sort of, I want the strong kick, or the relaxed dip, or the evening cigar(or 3). Since Garrett is considerably more rough to take, and I had so many bouts of over stressing myself, its easier to sort of mix up all of the different forms now. I guess i struggle with which nicotine source is the one 'by my side' but maybe thats part of what im giving up with cigs. Although copenhagen does seem to be fitting that bill, Ive survied on a snuff in the morning, lunch, and evening, and nicorette the rest of the time. I also have nightly cigars. Maybe thats old habits dying hard, maybe its a new hobby. Either way, even on constant snuffing, I feel healthier than when I smoked.
    Edit: I do enjoy snus, I need to get more into it. But I just feel the guaranteed fix is in dip, maybe a misconception since Ive only had General. But who knows, maybe theres also really great additives in dip too. And since I am still smoking cigars and sniffing tobacco, I guess I feel that the 'ultimate health product' isnt as important at the moment.
  • volungevolunge Member
    edited September 2019 PM
    Have you read Allen Carr's The Easy Way to Stop Smoking? Quite a few interesting and spot-on insights there. I found it really effective. What you do is basically lit on your cigar(-ette) (as advised by the author) and have a nice read.
  • Mr_OMr_O Member
    edited September 2019 PM
    To me, it is much like is it wrong to use caffeine or to drink a moderate amount of alcohol? I was smoking a lot of strong hand rolled cigarettes every day, myself. Is it any worse to use tobacco, especially in what seems to be a much safer form? For me it seems reasonable to use what seems like a safer alternative to reduce the harm to my health. It would seem to likely be the same for many people here. I hope you can figure out what works for you!
  • Well, I sure appreciate the sentiment. I happen to have a drinking problem I've tried to fully abstain from, and am so far unsuccessful, but I have cut down. I also chronically ingest caffiene, another habit i am considering how to cut back on. For that one, Ive considered a combination of cacao powder(theobromine) and maca, a root similar to ginseng. I would probably use ginseng as well, I just am very tolerant to it and would need an extra boost. My ultimate goal would be to use all of these substances casually and intermittently as you suggest, but I think total abstinence for a time is probably what my body and mind are going to require. This is proving to be much easier said than done.
    And as far as Allen Carr goes, I guess I just need to read it. Ive heard the name so many times and Im so prepared to loudly proclaim that its bullshit, but cant because I dont know a thing about it.
  • volungevolunge Member
    edited September 2019 PM
    That book went from hands to hands in my circle. I was more than sceptical about it (and that kind of books in general). Then, to my utmost surprise and irritation, most of them folks suddenly quit. I got the book and gave it a go. In all fairness, I even did not want to kick the habbit back then (2008), borrowed it out of curiosity. Guess what, I quit tobacco. Out of the blue. I even became anti-tobacco advocate.

    It lasted for a good month or so. Then I relapsed. I deprived myself of sleep and got stressed really bad. Please excuse me for skipping the details, but buying the pack of Winston Blue was the very first thing I did that morning.

    Looking back, all of my friends and acquaintances who succeeded in quitting with the assistance of the book sooner or later got back to nicotine. Some of them never got back to cigarettes, but started vaping. 

    All that said, I still recommend reading it. It takes just a few hours. Just don't buy it - borrow one or search for a free copy online. I just ran a search for "Allen Carr" in Soulseek Qt server, quite a few guys share it there. Both pdf and audiobook version.
  • Volunge, I think perhaps you ought to write the book on tobacco. I appreciate that you are knowledgeable about all of the niche facets of this habit. Part of what I'm doing right now, exploring everything from snuff to cigars to damn betel nuts, is to allow myself to be enthusiastic about stopping smoking. Not all of these are going to stick like cigs did I figure, so whats the harm? In fact, I probably have MORE tobacco and nicotine in my system now, and I STILL sometimes completely break down thinking about a cigarette. So, the psychological hold is very strong. And from what I have studied about the book, it does seem to be a cognitive behavioral therapy type approach, retraining how the brain percieves cigarettes. However, in my life such an extreme seems to result in failure. As you said, you became ideaologically anti tobacco for a time; that reminds me of myself on so many issues, and typically such a stance is more about me lying to myself and not finding a good middle ground, than actually believing the new way of life. But that middle ground is elusive, especially with tobacco. So, I should really read it if nothing else to say I've 'tried everything'
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