The first study regarding the long-term effects of vaping versus traditional cigarettes for ex-smokers has been conducted by University College London (UCL) – concluding that e-cigarettes are indeed much safer than their combustible counterparts.
From the early days of vaping, the nicotine replacement devices have not been without their critics. Despite the number of expert sources maintaining that vaping is safer than smoking, many prominent politicians have chosen to remain wilfully ignorant of the benefits the cessation product provides. The propagation of these negative viewpoints has even led to many leading nations such as Australia, Canada and Mexico to declare an outright ban.
But thankfully, as more and more research is carried out into the subject, those who were previously critical of e-cigarettes are starting to come around.
A suitable nicotine replacement
The landmark study – led by Dr. Dr Lion Shahab, Robert West, Maciej Goniewicz and Ann McNeill – found that vaping long-term delivers an equivalent level of nicotine for users, when compared to traditional cigarettes; and in a much more socially acceptable way.
As well as delivering the necessary amounts of nicotine to prevent relapses, tests on former smokers who completely switched to e-cigarettes found greatly reduced amounts of toxins and carcinogens in their bodies. Those who still combine traditional cigarettes alongside e-cigarettes were found to not enjoy the same benefits.
With many anti-vaping campaigners continuously using the lack of a long-term study as grounds for a ban on e-cigs, there are hopes that this latest research from a respectable institution such as UCL will add more clout to the argument that vaping is at least 95% safer than smoking.
“Around a third of tobacco-caused deaths are due to cancer so we want to see many more of the UK’s 10m smokers break their addiction,” said Alison Cox, Cancer Research UK’s director of cancer prevention.
“This study adds to growing evidence that e-cigarettes are a much safer alternative to tobacco and suggests the long-term effects of these products will be minimal.
“Understanding and communicating the benefits of nicotine replacements, such as e-cigarettes, is an important step towards reducing the number of tobacco-related deaths here in the UK.”
New evidence undermines negative views
The Welsh health department has been one of the most vocal opponents to the proliferation of vaping. Ashley Gould, a health advisor for Public Health Wales, has even been caught on record claiming that sweet flavoured e-liquids are a conspiracy by the vaping industry to encourage children to take up the practice.
Despite health experts claiming the opposite, Gould has continued his crusade unabated – but in light of the stream of new evidence that undermines his views, he has, of late, been forced to backtrack on certain statements previously made.
There are hopes that there will be further studies released in the future that corroborate the aforementioned research, with the aim of countering the amount of misinformation already consumed by those who dislike the practice of vaping.
For the public, the opportunity to see a reduction in healthcare spending, in conjunction with seeing loved ones live longer, is one that shouldn’t be missed.