If you’ve been wanting to give up smoking but have been unsure whether an e-cig would help, or even just asked yourself “Are ecigs safe?” then this will answer all your questions.
It’s official, electronic cigarettes do help people to quit smoking. A study carried out by the University of London found that e-cigs are 60% more effective as an aid to assist those who wish to stop smoking than gum or nicotine patches.
The study, which was published in the journal Addict, followed the efforts of nearly 6,000 smokers who were attempting to quit over a five year period. The subjects were not permitted the use of prescription medications or support from medical professionals.
Overall, the findings suggest that electronic cigarettes have the potential to significantly reduce the smoking of traditional cigarettes and aid quitting. As a result this can prevent and reduce smoking-relating illnesses and deaths.
Professor Robert West, who headed the study, explained: “E-cigarettes could substantially improve public health because of their widespread appeal and the huge health gains associated with stopping smoking.”
A major concern that has dogged the growth of the e-cig is that there are those who worry it will ‘re-normalize’ smoking. Since the UK smoking ban came into effect in 2007 people have not been permitted to smoke indoors or in public places, such as bus stops and train platforms. As such it has become rarer to see people smoking traditional cigarettes than it was pre-2007.
However, electronic cigarette users are able to “vape,” indoors. “Vaping” refers to the act of using an electronic cigarette, and it has not been banned indoors or in public places. There are no risks associated with smoking an electronic cigarette around others, as there is with tobacco and second hand smoke, so there really is no reason to deny ecig users the freedom to "vape" publicly. As electronic cigarette users are allowed to “vape” in public places, including bars and restaurants, some people have been worried that children will see the act of smoking as normal and acceptable.
Professor West addressed these concerns, claiming “we are tracking this very closely and see no evidence of it,” concluding, “Smoking rates in England are declining, quitting rates are increasing and regular e-cigarette use among never smokers is negligible.”
He also dispelled fears about electronic cigarette health risks which could arise from using the devices, reassuring people that it is already apparent that using an electronic cigarette is far safer than smoking tobacco.