The vaping community is not always filled with stories about its impending doom and extinction by anti-vaping advocates. Once in a while we receive good news from corners of the world that give us hope that maybe the world can finally be set straight about the positive impact actually has on a community if allowed to thrive. There have been various studies that support the positive effects of vaping to ex-smokers. Vaping has allowed ex-smokers to effectively quit smoking, escape a lung cancer diagnosis and ultimately live longer and healthier lives. Recently a study in Scotland has noted a significant rise in vaping and a dramatic drop in smoking. In the face of such glaring regulations like the EU Tobacco Products Directive this is great news and it will add to proof that vaping is not the enemy. Such news is to be celebrated as a positive endorsement of the good effects of vaping.
In 2014 the number of vapers in Scotland was recorded at 5% of the population but rose in 2015 to a remarkable 7%. There was also a 7% drop in the number of smokers recorded between 2003 and 2015. These are great figures that show a direct relationship between increased vaping leading to decreased smoking. Close to Scotland England shared equally encouraging statistics, with a marked increase in vaping as e-cigarettes have gained popularity amongst quitters. These figures in England are an indication that alternative tobacco products if properly supported and promoted by public health policies can help to reduce the number of smokers and increase those who quit per annum. Significant drops in the purchase of cigarettes were also noted in Scotland and a study revealed more people between the ages of 16-34 were choosing vaping over smoking accounting for this drop.
There are over 100 000 deaths per year associated with smoking and smoke related illnesses in Scotland which is about a fifth of their total population. Smoking also drastically impacts a persons quality of life which means a great number are still affected either directly or indirectly.
Another positive outcome this study proved was that the number of children exposed to second-hand smoke had also reduced tremendously, there was a whooping 5% drop, a figure that was targeted in a 5 year scheme. The Scottish government had set this target to be reached within 5 years but with a greater appreciation of vaping the numbers have since also dropped remarkably.
Scotland is a great example of what vaping can achieve if it is not over regulated and allowed a place of prominence in the fight against smoking. If we are to compare these positive results with some States in America they will pale in comparison as many of them are practically operating with a noose around their throat. Scotland has taken a more progressive stance with vaping giving certain allowances that many countries have not. The fact that they commission studies such as these ones so as to check the progress and effectiveness of vaping are a good step. This is a particularly great thing because many operate from a place of fear and lack of knowledge and with that you get a lot of scared and misinformed smokers denied of a lasting opportunity to quit smoking and increase their quality of life. This progressive attitude has seen Scottish health officials and authorities launch a study to determine the effects of vaping in pregnant women. Vaping in public spaces such as hospitals has also been legalised. There is a greater acceptance of vapers and vaping in Scotland a welcome change to the usual animosity that vaping has been treated with.
There are genuine efforts to combat smoking and smoke related illnesses. A real desire for them to save their community from itself and improve its quality of life. In the long run this will positively affect the economy as there will be a stronger workforce and less taxpayers money spent on health care owing to smoking. These statistics are promising and a clear indication that vaping can be a useful tool in the fight against tobacco smoking. Members of Action on Smoking and Health (ASH) an organization formed in the 70s that is an anti-smoking group applaud the efforts that Scotland has taken and continues to take to reduce the harmful impact of tobacco.
There are a few important lessons to be learned from this example of Scotland that we have just discussed.
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