Study Indicates We’re Finally Moving Toward Victory In The Fight For Vaping Rights
The new report concludes that public perception of vaping, while still relatively low, is increasing significantly
According to many, public perception remains the most significant problem facing the acceptance of vaping. In order to better ensure our continued right to vape, the best thing we can do is increase the number of people who understand the dramatic harm reduction and smoking cessation value of vaporizers. We still have a long way to go before society fully understands what vapes have to offer, but a new report published in the Addiction journal seems to indicate we are most certainly on the right track.
Improving public perception of vaping is an incredibly important piece of the puzzle. Until we have the support of more people, it will remain incredibly easy for the government to step in and place harsh taxes or restrictions on vaping. So as both sides continue their fight to control the narrative, only time will truly tell if this improvement in public perception provides the impact needed to secure our rights.
The New Report
This new study was led by Dr. Leonie S. Brose, along with a team of researchers who wanted to determine how public perception of e-cigarettes and other nicotine replacement therapies had changed over the last couple of years. They started by gathering a group of nearly 2000 participants, both current and former smokers, and asked them a series of questions designed to uncover their understanding of the dangers of vaping. This included questions about the risks of nicotine, how addictive vaping is, and how much safer you are after swapping cigarettes for vapes. After collecting all of their data, the team started the long and exhaustive process of going through everything looking for statistically significant patterns.
Once the analysis period was complete, the team had made some important and exciting discoveries. First of all, they concluded 57.3% of participants believe vaping is less harmful than smoking, although the likelihood of this was directly correlated with if they had ever used a vaporizer or not. So as expected, those who have never used vapes have a much cloudier understanding of what vaping has to offer. Looking into their results further, we find that 25.4% of participants believed vaping is less addictive than smoking. The main issues for vaping noted by researchers involved things like a lack of research (48.3%) and lack of proper oversight (37.8%). This study makes it clear that while on the right track, we still have a long way to go before vaping is fully accepted.
On The Rise
The significance of this new report is only made more apparent when you realize just how poor public perception was in years past. According to a large scale poll conducted by Action on Smoking and Health back in 2016, only around 13% of adults understood vaping is much safer than smoking, while about twice as many people felt vaping was just as, if not more dangerous. Clearly, things have improved significantly, with now almost a full 60% understanding the harm reduction value e-cigarettes offer. The other often referenced drawback to vaping, impact on teens, has also been disproven with peer-reviewed research. A survey of over 60,000 students concluded that only between 0.1% and 0.5% of non-smoking teens are ever picking up vaporizers.
Taking things further, we have a ton of evidence which proves the harm reduction value of vaping. Spreading this information could be the next big step in improving public perception. Back in 2015 we first found out that vaping is at least 95% safer than smoking, but this figure has popped up over and over. In fact, just last month a report concluded that cigarette smoking contains around 93% more toxicants than e-cigarette vapor. But probably the most powerful piece of evidence we have indicates that the excess lifetime cancer risk of a vaper is around 57,000 times lower than a smoker with a similar background.
This fight is not over. Not by a long shot. But according to the findings of this new report, we are moving in the right direction after years of stagnation. Public perception is an incredibly important part of this fight, as when more people understand what vaping has to offer, it becomes much harder to pass harsh regulations. If vaping is ever going to reach its full potential as a harm reduction and smoking cessation tool, it’s of the utmost importance we continue to work on how the general public sees e-cigarettes. That’s the best way we can secure and protect our vaping rights into the future.
Are you excited about the improved public perception of vaping? Do you think we’re moving in the right direction, or should we be focused on something else? What’s the most effective way to teach people about the value of vaping? Let us know what you think in the comments, and don’t forget to check back here or join our Facebook and Twitter communities for more news and articles.