Does Vaping Lead To Smoking?
The idea that vaping encourages people to take up smoking has been a popular myth for years. You might’ve seen this rumour being spread by the media or coming up in conversation whenever the topic turns to vaping.
The short answer is no, vaping doesn’t encourage people to take up smoking. A lot of research has been done into the effects of vaping and it’s been proven that vaping doesn’t encourage vapers to become smokers. In fact, statistics show that smokers who turn to vaping are more likely to give up smoking for good, not the other way around.
So, if we know for a fact that vaping doesn’t encourage people to take up smoking why is this myth so popular among the general public and the media? Part of the problem is that vaping is a new phenomenon and some people are going to be sceptical about anything that’s new and popular.
Another reason is that vaping can appear similar to smoking and that the vast majority of vapers started out as smokers. There is a strong link between smoking and vaping and some people misinterpret this as vaping leading people to smoking, but in reality the opposite is true. Most people take up vaping to help them give up cigarettes and so far millions of smokers have quit with the help of vaping. There is a big overlap between smoking and vaping because vaping is helping people give up tobacco, not the other way around.
It is understandable that people would be concerned if vaping really was encouraging new people to take up smoking. Around half of smokers will die as a result of smoking related illness and in the United Kingdom alone about a hundred thousand people die each year because of smoking. Encouraging more people to take up smoking would be terrible. But vaping actually helps people quit smoking for good, so, this myth is the exact opposite of the truth.
Some vapers are concerned that rumours like this are discouraging smokers from trying vaping as a way to help them quit smoking. Ironically this means that the people spreading the rumour that vaping encourages smoking are actually making it harder for smokers who want to quit tobacco.
Let’s take a look at the research into vaping to understand the role vaping plays in helping people quit smoking instead of encouraging non-smokers to take up cigarettes. Vaping may be a relatively new phenomenon, but there has been a lot of analysis and study of the vaping industry in recent years and the evidence tells us that vaping does not encourage people to take up smoking.
A report by the Royal College of Physicians agrees with the findings of this research. The report says that vaping is not a gateway into smoking or encouraging new people to take up cigarettes. The report also agrees that these rumours are unfounded, pointing out that the number of smokers is at an all time low in countries where vaping is widespread.
The number of young adults who smoke has been decreasing ever since vaping started to become popular. And surveys show that young adults who vape regularly are the same young adults who already smoked, showing that smokers are more likely to become vapers and not the other way around.
Action On Smoking And Health
Action on Smoking and Health (ASH) are a leading health charity that have recently agreed with findings that vaping doesn’t encourage people to take up smoking.
Although ASH have noticed an increase in eleven to eighteen year olds who claim to have tried vaping, they found no evidence that this led to trying smoking. And although surveys show that around ten percent of people in this age group have tried vaping, the number that said they vape regularly has remained at under three percent for years.
ASH have said that they believe vaping isn’t encouraging children to try smoking and that the public should be reassured that vaping isn’t a gateway to tobacco products.
If vaping encouraged people to take up smoking then you would expect vaping to be terrible at helping smokers quit tobacco. But a great deal of research has shown that vaping can almost double the chances of smokers giving up cigarettes for good. Public Health England has agreed with the research saying that vaping is a useful tool that can help smokers quit tobacco products.
Since vaping was first introduced in the United Kingdom, around three million people have taken up smoking and the vast majority started to help them quit smoking. More than half the vapers in the United Kingdom have gone on to give up smoking entirely. That means that more than ten percent of the smokers in the United Kingdom may have given up thanks to vaping.
When you look at the statistics it’s obvious that vaping doesn’t encourage new people to take up smoking. The research shows us that vaping has actually made a huge difference to more than a million smokers in the United Kingdom who wanted to quit.
The Survey Says
It is very clear at this point that vaping doesn’t encourage people to take up smoking. A lot of research has been done into the effects of vaping and studies have shown that vaping almost doubles the chances of smokers quitting tobacco for good and doesn’t act as a gateway for non-smokers to start smoking. This research has been supported by medical organisations like the Royal College of Physicians and Public Health England who agree that there is no link between people vaping and taking up smoking.
Unfortunately the rumour that vaping encourages people to take up smoking remains popular despite all the evidence to the contrary. Like other negative myths about vaping, it seems that there are some people out there who will continue to spread misinformation despite all the proven benefits when it comes to vaping helping smokers quit tobacco for good.