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Cut it out once and for all

Column by Obi Roberts, a student of University of Evansville, Harlaxton Manor

Walking around Grantham it is impossible to escape the vape shops that are scattered around the town.

Everywhere you look there seems to be a vape shop with more electronic cigarettes than I can count on my fingers and toes.

Obi Roberts, Harlaxton Manor student. (18961663)
Obi Roberts, Harlaxton Manor student. (18961663)

The reason for this, quite simply, is that is seen as a less lethal way for people to smoke, as well as help people quit cigarettes and spend less money.

It has been widely believed that vaping is “healthier” than cigarettes and you might hear from vapers that “vaping saved their life”.

Across the pond in the US, though, there are serious concerns that vaping isn’t safer because of the recent increase in lung illness and deaths related to vaping.

In America, seven people have died and there have been over 400 cases of lung illness reported across the states. This has sparked national outrage.

It has become impossible to look at social media without seeing an ad to stop vaping, or a concerned parent sharing an article about how bad e-cigarettes are.

Here in the UK it makes sense that there would be the same concern if it was in fact the e-cigarettes causing these deaths, because many of the ones used in the US are also used here, but that does not appear to be the case. The main theory for why this is a problem in the US and not in the UK is because the majority of the reported deaths have been related to vaping an illicit substance, not nicotine. In the US it has become more popular to use the illegal vape form of cannabis.

Recently, the Center for Disease Control and Prevention issued a statement declaring that the lung illnesses were related to these cannabis vapes, not nicotine. This clarification has come only after vape bans have become law in many states, and some people have now given up vapes and gone back to smoking cigarettes, which kill 480,000 people every year. These false allegations against vapes have, at best, not helped anyone and, at worst, encouraged people to go back to cigarettes.

Here in the UK, vaping is still healthier than cigarettes, but maybe it is time to cut that nicotine addiction once and for all. That is the healthiest decision.

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