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The Office for National Statistics (ONS) released the last figures for adult smoking and e-cigarette patterns in Great Britain.

British vapers are 2.2 million and represent 4% of the population. More than half of them (53%) reported using the electronic cigarette to quit smoking.

Among vapers, one out of five (22%) perceive the e-cigarette as a less harmful alternative to smoking and one out of ten (9%) switched to vaping because they could use it where smoking is forbidden. Dual smokers represent 1.3 million people.

The survey confirms that most vapers 98% come from the tobacco cigarette and only 56,000 persons report vaping without having smoked ever. It also confirms that the e-cigarette is not the ultimate smoking cessation option since 2.6 million have tried it but didn’t stick to its use. Almost 4 million people are former users of the e-cigarette among which three third (76%) relapsed to smoking.

A game changer

According to the Pr West,Professor of Psychology at University College London, interviewed on BBC4, “e-cigarettes are, by some margin now, the most popular method of stopping smoking”, and he adds they are “more popular than the licensed nicotine products in terms of smokers who are using them to cut down.”

“it may well be worth trying e-cigarettes, with an aim of eventually quitting them too” -P. Woods
Dr Penny Woods, chief executive of the British Lung Foundation, said to the dailymail: “It is encouraging that the number of adult smokers is the lowest on record, but we can’t be complacent.” For her, switching to the e-cigarette should be accompanied by a plan to abandon any kind of nicotine product, which is not actually the case.

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