Vaping vs. Smoking: Why E-Cigarettes Are Safer
There is a plethora of information suggesting cigarettes are bad for your health. We know that cigarettes can have numerous negative effects on humans. They cause cancer. In fact, that’s a pretty bold claim.
However, it’s not easy to prove that a substance causes cancer. Many studies and researches site correlative and contributing factors. It’s quite difficult to prove causation.
That’s because it does not come easy. When it is proven that something triggers cancer, it’s serious. An action must be taken to make the public aware that they are being harmed. This is the reason why it took many years to prove that smoking causes cancer.
Today, we have a new debate: whether e-cigarettes are safe. Do they cause cancer? Are they harmful to health? Are they better than cigarettes?
The top stories about vaping relate to explosions, health problems, and that they lead to smoking in teenagers.
For an average smoker looking to know more about e-cigarettes, an internet search provides little reassurance. In short, most of the headlines imply that these products are dangerous.
But the reality is that they are safe. Over the years the evidence that using electric-cigarettes is much safer than smoking has continues to accumulate.
In 2017, the first long-term study on e-cigarettes was published, comparing toxicant exposure between people who had stopped smoking and used e-cigarettes for an average of 15 months, compared to the ones who continued smoking.
Funded by Cancer Research UK, the study revealed large reductions in carcinogens and other harmful compounds in e-cigarettes compared with smokers, but only if the user had quitted smoking completely.
Another research compared toxicants in smoke and e-cigarettes that can cause cancer, and evaluated excess cancer threats over a lifetime from smoking cigarettes or e-cigarettes.
Most of the data available on e-cigarettes suggested a cancer risk from these products around 1 percent of that from smoking.
First thing about e-cigarettes that they are less harmful is that don’t contain tobacco. Inhaling burnt tobacco, also chewing it, is immensely damaging to our health. Remove the tobacco and the combustion and you will find that risk is reduced.
Are e-cigarettes completely safe?
That also doesn’t mean that e-cigarettes are completely safe. But, it does imply that we can be relatively confident that choosing vaping over smoking will have health benefits.
These new finding have influenced policies in the countries like England. In England, a consensus endorsed by several health organizations has existed since 2015 encouraging smokers to try e-cigarettes.
Addition to that, organizations, such as the British Medical Association and the Royal College of General Practitioners have issues new reports pointing to vaping as a positive choice for smokers looking to quit.
Many organizations led by Health Scotland jointly issued a statement making clear that e-cigarettes are definitely safer then smoking. The statement was also supported by Scotland’s Chief Medical Officer.
In many countries, vaping is still banned and using them can lend vendors and vapers into jail. Yet, this is changing gradually.
2017 saw a reversal of New Zealand’s position on these products and their new policies resemble to those in place in the UK. Canada is also going to legalizing vaping products, though details of the regulatory body are still being removed.
These countries are acknowledging research evidence and other may also follow.
The main reason for caution in many nations is the fear that e-cigarettes will lead to smoking, especially in youngsters.
This year many studies suggested that some teenagers experimenting with e-cigarettes go on to smoke when followed up a year later.
There is little doubt that there are groups of people susceptible to both. Yet these studies cannot prove that it was because of vaping that lead to smoking- plenty of factors could explain this, including the fact that tobacco is widely available.
The world’s largest study on young people and vaping, including more than 60,000 teenagers, was published in 2017.
It showed that when experiment with these products was undergoing, regular use by teens who never smoked remains very low, at less than 1 percent.
Meanwhile in the U.S. and many other nations, youth smoking rates are declining at an encouraging pace. If e-cigarettes were causing smoking, the trends would reverse.
So, what an average smoker is to do with this long controversy, and seemingly unappeasable media interest around vaping? Who should they trust? Good sources of information are available, but they aren’t prominent enough.
We need reliable public information, from reputable resources, to raise our vice and deliver the fact. And these are the facts.
In case you are a smoker, the best you can do for your health and health of your family members and friends is to stop smoking. If you prefer e-cigarette to smoking, that’s great, and no one has the right to criticize you for choosing it.
I firmly believe that we will see a public information campaign along the lines in the near future. And from my perspective, it cannot come soon enough.
When comparing smoking and e-cigarettes, there are many different aspects to keep in mind. The only thing throwing a shade on e-cigarettes is the long-term effects, something that only time will tell.