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More vapers equals fewer smokers? Here’s what we know about the effects of vaping on smoking.

As the popularity of traditional cigarettes seems to be going up in smoke, a new trend is rising from its ashes – vaping. The two activities have been compared, contrasted, crowned and criticized in pretty much equal manner. But what is the actual relationship between smoking and vaping? And how does the popularity of one affect the other?

 

Vaping leads to decline in cigarette use

 

A paper partially funded by the National Cancer Institute and published in Tobacco Control Journal examines exactly that and reveals interesting results. According to the study, as the use of traditional cigarettes fell to its all-time low from 2013 to 2017, e-cigarette consumption and vaping were on the rise.

The inverse relationship between smoking and vaping was especially evident in youth and young adults. This trend has been confirmed by five national surveys (Monitoring the Future (MTF) Survey, National Youth Tobacco Survey, Youth Risk Behavior Survey, National Survey of Drug Use and Health and the National Health Interview Survey), which showed that after vaping gained popularity in 2014, the decline in cigarette use has accelerated compared to 2011 through 2013 when vaping wasn't popular. Moreover, the number of youth and young adults who smoked dropped dramatically when vaping came onto the scene.

 

Can we then say that vaping has had a positive effect on smoking cessation rates? According to David Levy, PhD, professor of oncology at Georgetown Lombardi Comprehensive Cancer Center, we can. But he goes on to specify that the above mentioned studies were conducted prior to the appearance of nicotine salts, which have since had a tremendous impact on the vaping industry.

 

Some vaping companies, however, have caught on to this issue and now feature lines of vaping devices engineered specifically for those making the smoking-to-vaping transition. IQ Vape, for one, are a brand specializing in just that with a complete line of vaping devices, pods and juices designed for first-time vapers.

 

 

What are nicotine salts?

 

Nicotine salts are found in leaf-based tobacco and are capable of delivering more nicotine compared to free-base nicotine. Thanks to the higher nicotine concentration, vapers actually end up vaping less, which, in turn, ends up saving them money. Moreover, while delivering more nicotine in one puff, nicotine salts are milder on the throat, which is one of the main factors behind their popularity. The “rough throat” feeling experienced with free-base nicotine is often what turns off cigarette smokers who are trying to make the transition to vaping.

 

Thus, we can safely assume that with the transition to vaping made easier, even more cigarette smokers have opted for the alternative. 

 

But is vaping healthier than smoking?

 

While the social jury may still be out on verdict, the scientific data is in. According to Public Health England (PHE), e-cigarettes and vaping are 95% safer than traditional tobacco smoking.

With that, Levy stresses that the use of e-cigarettes needs to be studied more and preventative measures are needed to reduce the use of any nicotine delivery systems among youth and young adults.

Dual use (the use of both traditional cigarettes and vaping devices) is also something that needs to be considered as there is a distinction to be made between those who use vaping to quit smoking and those using vaping as an extra to their smoking habit.

 

Generally, though, we are observing a very pronounced shift in nicotine use: vaping is replacing smoking as the nicotine delivery system of choice. This, in turn, has fueled the market for vaping devices, which is now flooded with a variety of mods, pens, cig-a-likes and more. This extensive device line-up, ironically, may often pose as a barrier to smokers interested in trying vaping: choosing the right vaping gadget to get started can be challenging.

Some vaping companies, however, have caught on to this issue and now feature lines of vaping devices engineered specifically for those making the smoking-to-vaping transition. IQ Vape, for one, are a brand specializing in just that with a complete line of vaping devices, pods and juices designed for first-time vapers.

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