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Health experts in the UK are concerned, as the rapid growth in the numbers of people switching from smoking to vaping has dropped significantly. Despite the fact that Public Health England has openly endorsed the safer alternatives as smoking cessation tools, the number of smokers switching per year has dropped from 800,000 to 100,000.
“The rapid growth in e-cigarette use has come to an end while over a third of smokers have still never tried e-cigarettes, saying the main reasons are concerns about the safety and addictiveness of e-cigarettes. It’s very important smokers realise that vaping is much, much less harmful than smoking.” said ASH ( Action on Smoking and Health) in a press release last Summer.
TPD regulations are stopping smokers from switching to e-cigs
Besides the bad publicity that e-cigarettes are still subjected to, the TPD regulation banning sales of nicotine containing e-liquids above 20 mg/ml, has been making it hard for many smokers to switch to e-cigarettes.
Leading nicotine researcher Dr Lynne Dawkins from the Centre for Addictive Behaviours Research, said that data she has personally compiled has indicated that vapers are compensating for lower-concentration liquids by vaping more. She added that she fails to see any rationale behind the TPD2 restrictions.
“There is no rationale for that cap – it seems arbitrary to me. There’s no evidence for increased harms of nicotine for levels above 20mg/ml. In light of research by our group, if you reduce the strength you compensate – that’s costly financially, and comes with a health cost,” said Dawkins.
Besides encouraged to remove the TPD2 regulations, MPs were also urged to introduce HnB products. “Tobacco is a carcinogen whether or not you burn it,” said professor of pathology at St Andrews University and chair of the government’s advisory Committee on Carcinogenicity of Chemicals in Food, Consumer Products and the Environment. “Heat-not-burn products show a 90-95 per cent fall in cancer-causing chemicals. Some disappeared, some fell by half.”
The Pre-TPD regulations were more effective
MPs also heard about the TPD2 regulation that imposes restrictions on e-cigarette adverts. When these restrictions were implemented the IBVTA had pointed out that the prior guidance, had already been working perfectly. Advertising was taking place in a sensible way, and there was no evidence which showed that non-smokers were being drawn to vaping or smoking as a result of such advertising.
In fact the UK was already experiencing the lowest number of smokers ever recorded. Hence, the only real impact that e-cig advertising was having, was that of introducing millions of smokers to vaping products, and exposing the opportunity the devices hold for smoking cessation.
Read Further: The Register