Health & Safety

Are E-Cigs a Cessation Device?

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Since e-cigarettes are still fairly new, their long-term success rate is yet to be determined. These unknown statistics help keep the debate relevant for both sides. However, the latest research does seem to suggest that there is a link between stopping smoking and the e-cig. Supporters hope that more evidence will surface to back the usefulness of these items.

The most recent data seems to be coming in from a periodic study being conducted in England. The Smoking Toolkit Study conducts polls and utilizes that information to track success rates in smokers who are trying to quit. In 2016, the success rate was at 23%, up from 14% in 2011. This shows a definite increase and interestingly enough, there was no rate of increase from the previous period of 2007 to 2011. Thus, it seems that real results are starting to be noticed and experienced; a positive step for the ecig industry.

There have been and continue to be multiple products on the market to help aid individuals in their effort to stop smoking. Various forms of nicotine replacement therapies, as well as nicotine patches and gum, have been helpful for some. However, there has never been any notable change in smoking cessation rates until recently. This makes it difficult to argue that the rise in e-cigarette usage is not contributing to that increase.

It seems that documented success rates began to rise in 2011. The ecig was still very new at this time and not very popular. Around this time, about 30% of surveyed participants were using other products for cessation. By 2015, near 40% of participants were using e-cigarettes for assistance. Only 10% were utilizing other forms of nicotine replacement therapy.

Experts on both sides of the ecig debate have come out to voice their opinions on the usage and long-term effects of the device. Some try to simply explain the results as nothing more than a fluke, a well-timed coincidence. While others are working hard to prove the validity and importance of the smoking cessation results.

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A vocal ecig advocate, Dr. Michael Siegel is a professor at Boston University with the School of Public Health. He fully agrees with all the evidence that is being provided that suggests these products have a major impact in the fight against smoking. Smoking has gone down remarkably for the past five years in England. His support has caused others to take notice and begin to encourage other studies around the world. Research involving the short term and long term side effects of these products is also becoming more prevalent.

Whether or not it is true that e-cigarettes can positively impact smoking cessation is yet to be determined. While many people may choose this device in their efforts to quit smoking, others find them beneficial for various reasons. For instance, multiple public locations have banned traditional smoking but allow ecig use due to the vapor byproduct instead of smoke. Individuals also enjoy the vast selection of flavored “e-juice” available to use in the ecig itself. Unlike the basic flavors of traditional tobacco, e-juice comes in options such as vanilla, cotton candy, banana smoothie among many others. Opponents say that these fun and alluring flavors appeal to a younger crowd, creating smokers out of individuals who may not have been otherwise. Lastly, some smokers find that ecigs may not ultimately deter them from their regular cigarettes but do help them cut back.

1 Comment

  • This is an interesting topic, especially for those in the UK where ecigs are now being prescribed to support smoking cessation by our health service. They released a report recently that showed two out of three people who used e-cigarettes in combination with the NHS stop smoking service quit smoking successfully. This is a pretty massive number and dwarfs the results of other products such as Gum or Patches.
    I just hope that some other countries taking a harder line on ecigs start to take note.

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