Vaping to quit smoking

Vapes (e-cigarettes) are much less harmful than smoking cigarettes

Most of the harmful chemicals in tobacco smoke, including tar and carbon monoxide, are not contained in legal vapes.

Many smokers have used them to stop smoking. Vaping to quit smoking is recommended by health professionals and the NHS. You are twice as likely to quit smoking using a vape compared with nicotine replacement products, like patches or gum.

However, vapes are not risk free. Non-smokers and young people under 18 should not take up vaping.

Long-term effects of vaping

Vaping has not been around for long enough to know the risks of long-term use. While vaping is much less harmful than smoking, it is unlikely to be totally harmless.

The healthiest option is to not smoke or vape. So, if you are vaping to quit smoking, you should, when you are sure you will not smoke again, aim to quit vaping.

What are vapes and e-liquids?

Vapes are electronic devices that let you inhale nicotine in an aerosol, or vapour, instead of smoke. This is done by heating a solution (e-liquid) that typically contains propylene glycol, vegetable glycerine, flavourings, and nicotine.

E-liquids come in different nicotine strengths, so you control how much nicotine you need to help with cravings and other withdrawal symptoms, such as feeling irritable and having low mood. Feel Good Suffolk can help you decide which nicotine strength is right for you.

Skope air vape kit

Myths and facts

Vapes give you 'popcorn lung'

This myth came about because of the flavouring called diacetyl used to give a buttery flavour to e-liquids.

Diacetyl is banned as an ingredient in e-cigarettes and e-liquids in the UK. It had been detected in small amounts in the past but only in very small doses and not enough to cause a problem for people’s health.

It is called popcorn lung as it was first found in workers in a popcorn factory. If people are exposed to high doses, it causes serious lung disease. The advice is only by legally regulated vapes from shops such as supermarkets, reputable vape shops and regulated online vape companies.

Vapes are not regulated and we don't know what's in them

The UK has some of the strictest regulations for e-cigarettes in the world, thanks to the Tobacco and Related Products Regulations Act of 2016. All legal products meet minimum standards of quality and safety. They are restricted in their packaging and labelling, and all ingredients are listed.

Vapes must be harmful becuase they contain nicotine

Four out of 10 people think that nicotine causes most of the tobacco smoking-related cancers, but this is not correct. It is the toxic cocktail of other chemicals inhaled in smoke that causes the smoking health issues.

Nicotine is the reason people become addicted to smoking this toxic mix. E-cigarette vapour does not contain tar or carbon monoxide, two of the most harmful elements in tobacco smoke.

It does contain some of the chemicals found in tobacco smoke but at much lower levels.

Passive vaping is harmful to bystanders

Unlike cigarettes, e-cigarettes have no side-stream vapour (that’s the smoke that comes out of a tip of a cigarette), just what is exhaled by the vaper.

To date there have been no identified health risks of passive vaping to the health of bystanders.

Vapes can explode

While it is true that there have been reports of e-cigarettes exploding, these incidents are very rare.

Most reported explosions have been caused by improper use, such as using the wrong charger, modifying the device, or allowing the device to overheat.

Vapes are safe devices when used properly and users follow manufacturer instructions.

Passive vaping

Is second hand vapour from vapes as harmful s second-hand smoke from cigarettes?

Second-hand smoke from cigarettes is a serious health hazard. Cigarette smoke lingers in the air for a long time, which can cause asthma attacks and shortness of breath for those around. Side-stream smoke from a cigarette (from the tip of the cigarette) can be more damaging due to the fact that it is from smouldering tobacco rather than burning tobacco.  

Scientific studies have found that second-hand vapour contains chemicals but concentration of these chemicals is much lower than in second-hand smoke. E-cigarette vapour quickly dissipates, unlike cigarette smoke.

Vapes do not give off a ‘side-stream’ smoke.

It is best not to vape around babies or children. And young children often copy what adults do. Always be considerate when vaping around anyone else, especially people with health conditions like asthma and other respiratory conditions.

lady vaping with no smoke stream

Vaporizar na gravidez

Nicotine Replacement Therapy (NRT) products such as nicotine gum and patches are the recommended way to help you stop smoking when pregnant. Vaping is another option to help you to quit.

Vaping is less harmful to you and your baby’s health than smoking cigarettes. It does not produce tar or Carbon monoxide, the 2 main toxins in cigarettes that may damage your developing baby.

The vapour from a vape contains some harmful chemicals found in cigarette smoke, including Nicotine, but at much lower levels. The harm of vaping for people in the short term and in years to come isn’t fully known yet.

What is known is that not only is vaping less harmful than cigarette smoking, but it is favoured by many mothers and partners over NRT and reportedly works better as a short-term measure to support a quit.

Smoking and vaping around other pregnant women, babies, children should be avoided.

It is okay to breastfeed but try to find a vape-free feeding spot when breast or formula feeding your baby.

Vaping in pregnancy animation to go here

teenager vaping

Youth Vaping

Nicotine vaping is substantially less harmful than smoking – however, it is not risk-free. Vaping is not for children and young people, whose developing lungs and brains are more sensitive to its effects.

That’s why there’s a minimum age of sale for vaping products in the UK. It is illegal to sell nicotine vaping products to anyone under 18 or for adults to buy them on behalf of under-18s.

If you find a retailer selling either nicotine vapes or tobacco products to under-18s, you can report a retailer to local authority Trading Standards via the Citizens Advice online portal.

Under 18?

If you’re under 18 and want to know the facts about vaping, find out more on the FRANK website.

Parando de vaporizar

Vaping is great to help you stop smoking.

É importante que você tome uma decisão informada. Se a vaporização está ajudando você a evitar o fumo, não há pressa em parar. A última coisa que você quer é se apressar, ter uma recaída e pegar os cigarros novamente.

There are strategies you can use to cut down your vape liquid strength and eventually stop Vaping. Having someone to support you will help.

gradually reduce the strength of nicotine in your e-liquid (if you are using a disposable vape, you could switch to a refillable device to do this) and extend the time between vaping. Set rules for yourself about where you do and do not vape, for example only outside of the home or only on breaks at work.

Reasons to stop vaping

  • You want to stop inhaling any substance
  • You worry about the cost of vaping
  • You are confident in being able to stay smoke-free without vaping
  • Worry about the harm of vaping
  • Your family and friends may also want you to stop because of their concerns about vaping’s safety.
  • Você pode sentir que a vaporização não está ajudando você e está mantendo seu vício em nicotina e não reduzindo os sintomas de abstinência do tabaco.

Unfortunately, Feel Good Suffolk Advisors cannot receive referral requests to support someone to stop vaping.

 Os vapes são consideravelmente menos prejudiciais do que fumar porque não envolvem a queima de tabaco.

Short-term use of vapes appears to pose few risks. Throat irritation and a slight cough are the most reported symptoms, and these subside over time.

Não é incomum usá-los por longos períodos. Mais da metade dos ex-fumantes que usam vapers relatam que fumam vaping há mais de 3 anos.

Embora existam dados limitados de segurança de alta qualidade para o uso a longo prazo de vapes, não há boas razões para esperar que o seu uso seja tão arriscado quanto fumar.

Quitting Vaping Tips

Vapes contain nicotine, which is addictive and can make it harder to stop. But there are lots of things you can do to help you quit, and it does get easier over time.

gradually reduce the strength of nicotine in your e-liquid (if you are using a disposable vape, you could switch to a refillable device to do this)

extend the time between vaping

set rules for yourself about where you do and do not vape, for example only outside of the home or only on breaks at work

If you prefer to stop vaping in one step, you can ask your pharmacist or stop smoking advisor about switching to a suitable nicotine replacement therapy product. This is an alternative way of cutting down your nicotine use until you are ready to stop completely

Remove temptations. Getting rid of anything you use to smoke or vape

Find different ways to cope with stress. Stress balls, fidget toys, taking a walk etc
Get support from your friends and family and ask other vapers not to vape around you
Keep active and exercise. Keeping active can help boost your mood and can be a good way to take a break when you need to
Write things down. Get things out by writing down what’s happening and how it’s making you feel
Reward yourself. Celebrating going a day, a week or longer without smoking or vaping. Plan small things to do that you’ll enjoy or set rewards for yourself each day
Keep trying. It can take time to quit, and many people don’t make it the first time they try. Don’t quit quitting.

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