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New research backs vaping in helping smokers quit

New research backs vaping in helping smokers quit

A small year-long study that tracked about 120 British smokers enrolled in a National Health Service smoking cessation program suggests that vaping may offer better odds of quitting.

For those who want to kick their smoking habit, switching to electronic cigarettes may offer better odds of success than nicotine patches, lozenges or gum, new research suggests.

The finding follows a small year-long study that tracked about 120 British smokers enrolled in a National Health Service smoking cessation program.

"E-cigarettes provide nicotine, which is important when someone is trying to quit smoking," said study author Dunja Przulj. "Going 'cold turkey' with no nicotine can make it difficult to deal with nicotine withdrawal symptoms. Having some kind of nicotine replacement improves your chances of quitting," she explained.

"In our study, smokers used e-cigarettes much like other nicotine replacement treatments. They were asked to set a 'quit day,' and advised to use their e-cigarette regularly throughout the day, and whenever they felt they needed it," Przulj added. "Everyone was encouraged to try and avoid smoking any normal cigarettes.”

In the end, study results suggested that "e-cigarettes would almost double your chances of quitting at one year compared to traditional nicotine replacement," Przulj reported.

 

Przulj, who is a research health psychologist with the Health and Lifestyles Research Unit at Queen Mary University of London. Stated that encouraging smokers to rely on e-cigarettes to help kick their habit raise the risk that quitters just end up swapping out one form of nicotine addiction for another? However Przulj thinks that's a risk definitely worth taking.

"E-cigarettes are at least 95% less risky than cigarettes," she said, "and so even if someone is still using an e-cigarette, the benefits outweigh any cons."

In fact, "doctors should encourage any smokers to try e-cigarettes," Przulj suggested, "especially if they have tried other methods before and these have not been helpful."

The study was funded by the National Institute for Health Research and Cancer Research UK.

For more information visit: Cancer Research UK