E-Cigarettes May Help Even Die Hard Smokers Kick the Habit

E-Cigarettes May Help Even Die Hard Smokers Kick the Habit

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Highlights:
  • Switching to vaping or e-cigarettes can help even persons addicted to smoking and those who were not planning to quit, kick the habit permanently
  • Quitting smoking improves a person's overall health and adds several years to life
  • Smoking harms almost every organ in the body and nearly 1 out of every five deaths in the US is related to smoking
Using e-cigarettes or electronic cigarettes, otherwise called vaping can help even hardened smokers kick the habit and remain so longterm according to a recent study conducted by scientists from the University of East Anglia. This research was funded by Cancer Research UK.

Aim of Study

E-cigarettes are becoming popular and increasingly touted as aids to quit smoking. They are considered less harmful than conventional tobacco smoking and the most popular method used in the UK to try and quit smoking.
E-Cigarettes May Help Even Die Hard Smokers Kick the Habit

The study team wished to determine how people use vaping to quit smoking and whether vaping actually helped persons remain without smoking in the longterm.

Details of Study

The study team conducted extensive interviews with 40 vapers regarding various aspects of their smoking habit and vaping history including
  • Duration and amount of tobacco smoking history
  • Prior attempts at quitting smoking
  • How they started vaping
  • Each person's vape device and set-up
  • Preferred flavors and strength
  • Whether they started vaping in attempt to quit smoking
  • Situations and experiences that made them go back to tobacco smoking

Findings of Study

  • Most of the study group participants reported long history of tobacco smoking and several earlier attempts at quitting
  • A small percentage (about 17 percent) had never tried quitting as they enjoyed smoking. Surprisingly this minority became "accidental quitters". They had not planned to quit and tried vaping on a whim or simply because their friends had asked them to try it out
  • Many participants found vaping an easy and less stressful way to quit smoking
  • Most of the participants were quickly able to transfer from tobacco smoking to vaping. A few did both smoking and vaping simultaneously, and eventually ending up quitting the habit of smoking
  • Many participants reported feeling better in themselves with improved breathing, and better sense of smell and taste
  • Few did occasionally relapse to tobacco smoking mainly on social occasions or for emotional reasons but did not suffer a full blown relapse
The findings of the study suggest that persons who switch to vaping are more likely to quit the habit and remain so longterm and could help even persons addicted to smoking and not planning to quit give up smoking.

What are E-Cigarettes? How do E-Cigarettes Work?

E-cigarettes are variously referred to as e-cigarettes, e-cigs, vape pens, electronic nicotine delivery systems, vaporizer cigarettes, and widely marketed as aids to quit smoking. E-cigarettes and similar devices let you breathe in nicotine or other drugs in the form of vapour and not as smoke. Nevertheless the longterm use of e-cigarettes whether to quit smoking or as an alternative to tobacco smoking is considered harmful by many experts.

The vape pen is a battery-operated device. When the user sucks on the mouthpiece it activates a heating element that vaporizes a flavored liquid held in the cartridge. The device emits doses of vaporized nicotine, or in some cases non-nicotine solutions, that is inhaled by the user. It aims to provide a similar feeling and experience of inhaling tobacco smoke, without the harmful effects attributable to smoke.

Potential Risks of E-Cigarettes

  • E-cigarettes also contain nicotine which is an addictive substance
  • Teens who begin vaping are more likely to try tobacco smoking as well as other substances such as cocaine. Alarmingly, vaping among adolescents in the US has increased by 900% between 2011 and 2015
  • One of the substances in e-cigarettes is diacetyl which can cause what is commonly known as popcorn lung (Bronchiolitis obliterans) which results in permanent lung damage
  • Vaping also releases potentially carcinogenic substances and does not totally overcome passive smoking

Vaping Safer Alternative To Smoking Says Current Study

E-cigarettes also contain nicotine which can be habit forming, but the study authors believe that vaping is a much safer alternative than tobacco smoking without the harmful effects of tobacco.

Hard to believe but true. Conventional cigarette smoke contains more than 4,000 chemicals, including 43 cancer causing substances and 400 harmful toxins. Some of these are nicotine, arsenic, tar, carbon monoxide, as well as ammonia, formaldehyde, hydrogen cyanide, and DDT.

Lead researcher Dr Caitlin Notley from UEA's Norwich Medical School said: "E-cigarettes are at least 95 per cent less harmful than tobacco smoking, and they are now the most popular aid to quitting smoking in the UK".

Alison Cox, director of cancer prevention at Cancer Research UK, said: "The evidence so far shows that e-cigarettes are far safer than tobacco".

The initial findings of the study are encouraging but more studies are needed to find out how and why persons who did not intend to quit tried vaping and how often it results in quitting.

In conclusion, e-cigarettes are one of the many options available to quit smoking. Consult your doctor to know more about the various options and the one which suits you best as it is more likely to succeed in the longterm.

References:
  1. Health Effects of Cigarette Smoking - (https://www.cdc.gov/tobacco/data_statistics/fact_sheets/health_effects/effects_cig_smoking/index.htm)
  2. Harmful Chemicals in Tobacco Products - (https://www.cancer.org/cancer/cancer-causes/tobacco-and-cancer/carcinogens-found-in-tobacco-products.html)


Source-Medindia

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