Research so far shows that e-cigarettes are far less harmful than smoking. This is because e-cigarettes don’t contain cancer causing tobacco. They do contain nicotine, which is addictive, but isn’t what causes the damage from smoking. 

What are e-cigarettes?

Electronic cigarettes (e-cigarettes or vapes) heat a liquid that has nicotine in. The liquid then becomes a vapour that people breathe in, as they would smoke from a tobacco cigarette. E-cigarettes give smokers the nicotine hit they need to help beat their cravings. But, the vapour doesn’t contain the same dangerous cocktail of chemicals found in tobacco smoke. Over recent years, e-cigarettes have become the most popular stop smoking tool in England. 

 

Can e-cigarettes help me stop smoking?

The most effective way to stop smoking is with the medication and support that is available from free local Stop Smoking Services (link is external). But for people who’ve tried to quit before, or don’t want to use other aids, e-cigarettes could be another option. Most Stop Smoking Services will let you take an e-cigarette along to help with your quit attempt. Please see our page on how to stop smoking for further information.

 

How safe are e-cigarettes?

Studies show that levels of key harmful chemicals are lower in people who switch from tobacco to e-cigarettes. There are still some questions about long-term safety, as e-cigarettes haven’t been around that long. But the evidence is pointing towards them being far less harmful than tobacco.  

In terms of safety, e-cigarettes are likely far closer to nicotine replacement therapy (NRT). NRT has long been known as a much safer alternative to smoking.

The most important thing for your health is to stop using tobacco.

Note: No evidence has shown that e-cigarettes cause the disease known as popcorn lung. The chemical thought to be responsible for this disease has been banned from use in e-liquids in Europe.

 

E-cigarettes have become the most popular way to break the habit, and research so far shows that they’re a far safer alternative to smoking. For smokers who’ve struggled to stop in the past, e-cigarettes are a worthwhile option to consider, especially when used alongside support from a Stop Smoking Service

Owen Carter, GP

 

Cost of e-cigarettes

Many people are able to save hundreds of pounds a year after making the switch away from tobacco. As with most things, some people will spend more than others. But people generally find that vaping works out cheaper for them than smoking.

 
 

References for cost calculations can be found below.