Misconceptions about e-cigarettes prevent many smokers from using them to give up smoking. To help smokers to make a more informed decision we’ve discovered the truth behind five common e-cigarette myths
# Myth 1:
E-cigarettes are more harmful than smoking tobacco cigarettes ☠️
According to ASH Wales’ latest YouGov stats, over 50% of smokers in Wales do not know that e-cigarettes are less harmful than tobacco cigarettes. Meanwhile, surveys carried out by Public Health England found that nearly half of the population don’t realise that e-cigarettes are less harmful than smoking. Although there are no studies currently available of the long-term effects of e-cigarettes, the current evidence that is available indicates that e-cigarettes are significantly less harmful than smoking tobacco. Indeed, an expert independent evidence review published by Public Health England found that e-cigarettes are in fact 95% less harmful than smoking.
# Myth 2:
E-cigarettes encourage young people to start smoking 🚬
Fears that e-cigarette use would encourage young people to start thinking smoking is ‘normal’ have been shown to be unfounded. A study of 248,324 teenagers by researchers at Cardiff University found that young people’s attitudes towards smoking tobacco have become more negative since the emergence of e-cigarettes. Meanwhile the percentage of young people who reported having tried smoking continued to fall during the same period. According to the research, the percentage of young people who thought trying out smoking a cigarette was ‘ok’ fell from 70% in 1999 to 27% in 2015. This rate went down faster from 2011 onwards, during which time there was a surge in the numbers of people trying e-cigarettes
# Myth 3:
Smoking e-cigarettes is harmful because they contain nicotine ⚖️
According to Public Health England, 4 out of 10 smokers think it’s the nicotine in cigarettes that causes smoking-related cancer. It’s true that nicotine is highly addictive, however it is only carries a minimal risk to health. Actually it is the other chemicals contained in cigarettes that cause cancer not nicotine. And unlike cigarette smoke, e-cigarette vapour doesn’t contain tar or carbon monoxide, two of the most harmful elements in tobacco smoke.
# Myth 4:
E-cigarettes won’t help you to stop smoking 🚭
A major UK clinical trial involving 900 participants and funded by the National Institute for Health Research (NIHR), found that when combined with expert face to face support, e-cigarettes are almost twice as effective at helping smokers to quit as other nicotine replacement therapy such as patches and gum. Two groups of quitters were tested and those that combined e-cigarette use with behavioural support, also had far faster reductions in coughs and phlegm. It is recommended that e-cigarettes should only be used as a way of quitting smoking and ideally e-cigarette users should gradually reduce the amount of nicotine they are using until they are able to stop vaping altogether.
# Myth 5:
E-cigarettes are not properly regulated 👮
E-cigarettes are strictly regulated in the UK and must meet minimum standards of quality and safety as set out in the Tobacco and Related Products Regulations 2016. Regulations cover not only the ingredients used to make the products but also packaging and labeling requirements. Manufacturers must notify the UK Medicines and Healthcare products Regulatory Agency about any products they make, listing all the ingredients they contain.