The NHS runs an annual ‘Stoptober’ campaign in an attempt to get people to quit smoking. This year, for the first time, the NHS has included e-cigarettes as an alternative to tobacco, which is a massive boost for both the e-cig and vaping industry.
Don’t believe it? Check out the following words directory from the Stoptober website:
“An e-cigarette is a device that allows you to inhale nicotine through vapour rather than smoke. E-cigarettes come in a variety of models and work by heating a solution that typically contains nicotine, propylene glycol and/or vegetable glycerine, and flavourings. E-cigarette vapour doesn’t contain tar or carbon monoxide, two of the most harmful elements in tobacco smoke. Using an e-cigarette isn’t completely risk-free, but it carries a small fraction of the risk of smoking and can help you quit.
E-cigarettes are particularly effective when combined with support from local stop smoking services – people who choose this route have some of the highest quitting success rates. E-cigarettes aren’t currently available on NHS prescription, but they can be bought in vape shops, pharmacies and other retail outlets.”
The Official Stoptober Launch Commercial
It’s October 31st, So How Did It Go?
Ever since vaping burst onto the scene, there have been various studies and opinion pieces debating whether or not it’s healthier than smoking a regular cigarette. In a conversation filled with misinformation, the opinion of experts is vital, so it’s difficult to ignore the NHS’s nod to vaping in its Stoptober campaign.
The backing of such a reputable health organisation is a massive step in the right direction for vaping — and the impact can already be seen through a massive increase in people spending their money on the best vape products on the market.
Huge Boost for the E-Cig vs Smoking Debate
The internet is riddled with back-and-forth debates on whether or not e-cigs and vaping are a healthier option than smoking. Many, many studies compare the apparent potential health hazards and, although an expert-led report stated that e-cigarettes are 95% healthier than tobacco, there will always be those that remain unconvinced.
E-cigarettes are very much one of the focal aspects of the marketing for the NHS ‘Stoptober’ campaign. This will not only give e-cig users more confidence knowing that they are opting for a healthier alternative to smoking, but it can also play a vital role in converting many tobacco smokers who were previously against other options.
The use of e-cigarettes is already proving to be an effective tactic to quit smoking. So whether these people are using e-cigs as much as they would smoke, or just using it as a transitional method to give up completely, both support the argument that they are considered by many to be a much healthier option.
Increase in Sales and Exposure for Vaping
Some health experts have been hesitant to promote e-cigarettes in the past, but since Stoptober was first established in 2012, over 50% of the people taking part opted for e-cigs to help them to kick the habit. Over 1.5 million people have taken part in Stoptober to date, so the fact that over half of those are e-cig users — combined with the recent endorsement by the NHS — could be a massive game-changer for the industry.
The Stoptober campaign has given e-cigarettes an abundance of positive exposure, thanks to online marketing and television adverts. This is obviously a massive benefit for e-cig retailers, as more people will see it as an efficient method of quitting tobacco for good.
The vaping trend has skyrocketed in recent years, with the only real issue holding it back being the negative opinions creating questionable perceptions. The introduction of e-cigs as a way to embrace Stoptober is a huge step for the industry, not only giving it more backing as a genuine way to quit smoking, but also to broaden its appeal to a much wider audience.
Potential for Widespread Acceptance for the E-Cig
The overall number of smokers continues to decrease year-by-year — and one of the crucial contributing factors has been the introduction of e-cigarettes and vaping. With e-cigs being considered by more and more people to be safer than regular cigarettes, it’s evident that many people have recognised the advantages of using them to quit smoking.
If e-cigarettes continue to help high numbers of people to quit smoking, it will only be a matter of time before we see similar Stoptober-like endorsements in the future from major health institutions. Although the health debate over e-cigs and smoking is far from over, Stoptober is a massive step in gaining widespread acceptance from the general public and experts alike.
The Prescription E-Cig ?
Despite the various praise in regards to health and helping people to quit smoking, e-cigs are yet to be approved for prescription by a doctor. There has been talk of this coming into play for quite some time, as a growing number of experts agree that vaping is undoubtedly a healthier alternative to smoking.
If Stoptober has told us anything, it’s that the world of e-cigarettes is taking great strides towards being accepted as a genuine alternative to smoking. For the NHS to even consider the use of e-cigs in a non-smoking campaign demonstrates how far things have come, which means the next step could well be e-cigs available on prescription. Of course, vaping manufacturers may have something to say about this, with the public possibly able to own an e-cigarette for free. However, regardless of the outcome of that theoretical debate, the mere possibility of that discussion shows just how far the e-cigarette has come over the past decade.
Check out this News Story from February of this year about long-term vaping, a report from the NHS. Is this now a trend for the NHS?
Drake Equation is a technology journalist and owner of VapeBeat, a blog dedicated to providing readers with the latest vaping news and product reviews.