If you’re considering vaping instead of smoking, there are probably a few questions on your mind.
- Is it better to smoke or vape?
- What are the advantages and disadvantages of nicotine vaping products (NVPs)?
- Are all vapes the same?
You shouldn’t have to read a whole essay or sift through countless articles to understand the pros and cons of vaping vs smoking, so we’ll get straight to the point.
Here’s what you need to know when it comes to the pros and cons of vaping.
Distinguishing Between Legal and Illegal Nicotine Vaping Products (NVPs)
Before anything else, it’s important to understand that there are vast differences between legal and illegal nicotine vaping products.
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You’ve probably heard about the latter from the news – growing numbers of concerning use by Australia’s youth (even in children as young as 5), and more recently, large seizures of these illegal products from local convenience stores, which have been freely selling these dangerous products with no concern for safety.
What hasn’t been mentioned too often in the news is the availability of trusted pharmacy options, which are available exclusively for motivated adult smokers as a responsible smoking cessation tool.
Like all other medicines, NVPs sold in pharmacies are made with your safety in mind. NVP products sold in pharmacies are made under stringent pharmaceutical standards on the manufacturing process and ingredients, are toxicologically assessed for inhalation, are locally insured, and are specifically designed to help you stop smoking.
You can trust that what you’re inhaling is tested, insured, and paired with ongoing medical support; this is especially important if you need to use it for a few months during your quit journey.
These have also proven their effectiveness over nicotine replacement therapy (NRT) products. The latest Cochrane Review found high-certainty evidence that NVPs are more effective than NRT in helping people stop smoking.
Pros and Cons of Illegal Vaping
Unlike their legal and responsible counterparts, illicit NVPs (such as those in convenience stores and tobacconists) are imported and sold under the radar, just like illicit tobacco and drugs, and are made as cheaply as possible for maximum profits.
There’s simply no way to verify where they’re manufactured or what practises these overseas suppliers adopt to ensure the safety of their products. At a wholesale cost of as little as $1, it’s not great.
Worryingly, they purposefully use colourful packaging and exciting flavours to make their products as attractive to children as possible, with a focus on keeping this new generation of nicotine addicts hooked to these dangerous products for as long as possible.
If you’re vaping without a GP’s prescription, you’re using an illegal NVP and exposing yourself to preventable dangers. There’s also a high risk you might vape and smoke at the same time.
There are no pros to illicit vaping. It’s illegal, and it’s also going to harm your health.
Pros and Cons of Legal Vaping
Wondering if there are any positives to vaping legally? There are a lot, such as not introducing 250 dangerous chemicals (including 69 carcinogens) into your body with every puff of a cigarette.
Furthermore, pharmacy-sold nicotine vaping products ensure you have a smoking cessation aid that mimics and helps reform the habits you’ve developed with cigarettes.
Do you feel like holding a cigarette and puffing while having a coffee in the morning? Exchange your cigarette with a pharmacy NVP. Over time, you’ll get used to puffing on your pharmacy vape rather than craving a cigarette.
Here are some other advantages of legal vaping:
- Made to pharmaceutical standards: Unlike illicit vapes, medical vaping products available in pharmacies are provided exclusively by Australian-registered suppliers, and are manufactured in GMP- and ISO-certified facilities, just like other medicines.
- Tested for inhalation safety: The vapes you will find in a pharmacy have undergone extensive testing and analysis to ensure they are suitable for human use. They’ve undergone compound identification and toxicological assessments for inhalation.
- Locally insured: Medical vaping products comply with all of the requirements to be supplied by medical wholesalers to registered pharmacies and are covered by local product liability insurance.
- Medically supported: Medical vaping products are quickly gaining support from the local medical community, from your prescribing GP to your local pharmacist.
NVPs from pharmacies can only be prescribed by GPs as a second-line tool. If you’ve never tried to quit using a first-line treatment such as nicotine replacement therapy (NRT), then you may not be eligible for NVPs.
So, Is It Better To Smoke Or Vape?
Choosing pharmacy vapes over smoking will expose you to far fewer chemicals and toxins and give you control of your nicotine intake with a similar feel. But vaping is only effective if you’re going through a smoking cessation programme with trusted products.
Ultimately, the healthiest option is to stop smoking and get a GP’s help. Pharmacy-sold NVPs can only be used as part of a smoking cessation program. They are not designed to be used long-term, and your vaping use must be closely monitored by a healthcare professional.
No more smoke and mirrors. Now that you understand the pros and cons of vaping, you’re equipped to make an informed decision about your health.
We know you’re reading this post because you’re eager to understand the pros and cons of legal vaping. We hope we helped you with this information.
Smokefree Clinic gives you access to many medically reviewed and trustworthy resources that can inform and aid you in your path to wellness, so have a look around!
If you’re ready to get started, Smokefree can connect you to bulk-billing Australian healthcare professionals who excel in helping patients quit smoking for good, including using responsible vaping products where appropriate.
Click here to book your bulk-billed telehealth consultation with an Australian healthcare professional and quit smoking today.