A new large-scale study asked former smokers how they were able to quit smoking successfully with e-cigarettes
These days we all know just how dangerous cigarette smoking is for your health, but it wasn’t always this way. For many years the companies in charge choose to suppress the information which proved cigarettes caused so much death and destruction. Over the last 30-plus years though, we’ve seen massive movements in the public health sector to discourage smoking via higher taxes and nearly universal smoking bans. While these efforts have lowered the smoking rate to all-time lows in many places, tobacco use remains the leading cause of preventable death and disease across the world.
One of the more recent tools in the fight against smoking has proven to be extremely useful in difficult cases. Vaporizers hit the scene in the late 2000s as an alternative to continued smoking. Since then they have become one of the most popular harm reduction and smoking cessation tools available, but unfortunately, misinformation about them remains rampant. In an effort to help demystify the tools, a new study published in the Nicotine and Tobacco Research Journal asked thousands of former smokers their best tips on how to successfully quit smoking with e-cigarettes.
The New Study
The study was conducted by researchers out of the Centre for Substance Use Research in Glasgow, UK. The team was interested in identifying any common patterns of use among those who found success using vapes. To accomplish this they gave the multi-national sample of 4,192 volunteers an online survey asking what advice they would give any smoker looking to quit using e-cigarettes. The team then took their results and analyzed them for any relevant patterns or trends.
After going over all the information, four crucial themes started to emerge. First, those looking to quit should make sure they take the time to find the correct device, flavor, and nicotine strength for their particular needs. Next, they indicated that dual using, or smoking and vaping interchangeably, is very common and entirely fine. But this should be weaned over time, as prolonged dual-using can be dangerous. Another common theme was recognizing that previous failures using other smoking cessation tools doesn’t mean that vaping is unlikely to help you quit. In fact, many people say vaping is what finally got them over the hump after years of failed attempts. The last common theme found by the researchers was a distinct awareness of the overall harm reduction value and cleanliness of vaping compared with smoking.
Further Research On Vaping
While this latest study is concerned with the perception of vaping among those who have already been able to quit. There is no shortage of evidence proving the extreme harm reduction and smoking cessation value of vaping. Back in 2015, Public Health England published a long-term study that indicated vaping is at least 95% safer than smoking, but that was just the start of things. Last fall we got a significant win for the vaping community as research concluded that the excess lifetime cancer risk of a smoker is around 57,000 times higher than a demographically similar vaper.
As if the evidence on the massive harm reduction value wasn’t enough, we also have data that suggests vaping may be the best smoking cessation tool we currently have at our disposal. A team of researchers out of the University of Louisville tested the success rate of many of the most common smoking cessation tools. This included traditional favorites like nicotine patches and gum as well as newer devices like prescription drugs; They even tested “cold turkey” as a method to quit smoking. After everything was collected, it became evident that vaping was more likely to be successful than even the prescription drugs like Chantix.
While the vaping community has known for many years just how beneficial e-cigarettes can be at getting you off cigarettes once and for all, we still lack enough research to prove this point sufficiently. That’s why new large-scale analysis like this is so critical for furthering the understanding of vaping. Polls have indicated that only around 13% of adults understand that vaping is much safer than smoking, while double that number seem to think they’re just as bad, if not more dangerous than tobacco. This sort of pathetic public perception is only making it much harder for public health officials and legislators to back the harm reduction tools. Ultimately, it would be best if this new research could help the next generation have an even easier time quitting. This may be the only way to change enough minds to realize the value of vapes fully.
Can you think of anything important the four tips didn’t cover? What do you think has the most significant impact on your vaping experience? How can we improve the public perception of vaping further? Let us know what you think in the comments, and don’t forget to check back here or join our Facebook and Twitter communities for more news and articles.