Four in ten smokers wrongly believe that vaping is as or more harmful as smoking
In a recent survey by ASH, Action on Smoking and Health, data has shown that four in ten smokers (39%) in Great Britain now believe that vaping is as or more risky compared to smoking. How can this be? Going up from a third compared to last year’s statistics. In the following blog we’ll dive into the newest survey and what the statistics are showing for Great Britain.
Earlier in 2023, the British government had announced a campaign to offer 1 million smokers a free vaping starter kit called ‘Swap to Stop’. The scheme was an effort to improve the health of millions of citizens by “swapping” to vapes and encourage the smoking rates to drop. Along with the free vaping starter kit, smokers will also be provided with behavioral support to help them quit the habit.
The campaign was done in hopes of aiding the government’s efforts to be smoke free by 2030.
However, it is now August of 2023 and the efforts of the Swap to Stop Campaign is showing signs of concerns over smokers that believe that vaping is as or more risky than smoking.
ASH provides the details in a recent article:
- Among 1.8 million smokers, who haven’t tried vaping, 43% believe e-cigarettes are as harmful or more than smoking
- Previous data shown 27% of smokers believed this in 2019
- Among 2.9 million smokers, who have tried vaping but stopped, 44% believe vaping as as harmful or more than smoking
- Previous data shown 25% believe this in 2019
- 2.7 million ex-smokers who vape, 75% believe that vaping is less harmful than smoking
- 2.9 million ex-smokers and are also ex-vapers, 45% believe that vaping is less harmful than smoking
There’s a surprising amount of smokers who still believe that vaping is just as harmful as smoking. Despite the efforts by Professor Ann McNeil, professor of Tobacco Addiction at King’s College London, and many others to combat the negative views that many are viewing on vaping. Professor McNeil has said, “Smokers smoke for the nicotine, but die from the tar.”
While vaping is still in a controversial area of discussion, especially surrounding youth vaping, there’s still plenty of data that shows the benefits of vaping. While the data from Ash is showing unfortunate results. What would the UK do about this misinformation?
Comment your thoughts below on why this could possibly be happening. Or your beliefs on the campaign and how it would work in your country.
- Swap to Stop, https://www.gov.uk/government/news/smokers-urged-to-swap-cigarettes-for-vapes-in-world-first-scheme ’
- ASH’s survey, https://ash.org.uk/media-centre/news/press-releases/four-in-ten-smokers-wrongly-believe-that-vaping-is-as-or-more-harmful-as-smoking
- Evidence behind vaping, https://www.kcl.ac.uk/news/spotlight/clearing-the-smoke-the-evidence-behind-vaping