Dealing With Objections to Vaping


If you don’t want to smoke then just quit, so one of the arguments goes. But people look at you funny if you suggest they should become vegetarians if they don’t like to eat tripe. What we’ve done here is to cover a lot of the popular objections to vaping that crop up on social media and offer up a reply you can use, most with a link to some actual science.

While there are no guarantees that this will convince doubters, at least it provides an alternative to suggesting they do something painful and permanent.

“It has chemicals in itâ€

As does your bacon sandwich. The only important aspect is the volume of “bad†chemicals – and, as vaping is a substitute for smoking, the important thing is that without combustion it doesn’t contain almost all of the toxic, carcinogenic chemicals in tobacco smoke. It’s the lack of those other chemcials that caused researchers in Bristol to say that switching to vaping is better for heart cells.

“I don’t want your second-hand smokeâ€

The problem with this is that objecting to having a large vape cloud blown into your face is quite justifiable. But, just to allay fear, current understanding is that there are minimal contaminants in exhaled vape – and nicotine content is tiny before being inhaled. And it isn’t smoke!

“They explodeâ€

There have been (in the region of) 20-30 explosions over the last couple of years. While these look serious it needs to be remembered how many vapers there are – 2.8 million.

There have been problems with the same type of battery in laptops, cellphones and hoverboards. Still, the incidents of failure were minimal compared to the volumes of products out there and lithium-ion cells remain an excellent choice when balancing performance against cost. The vape-related incidents are almost exclusively the result of a person not following charging or use instructions.

“They give you popcorn lungâ€

Let’s give it its real name: bronchiolitis obliterans. And no, vaping does not cause this disease. How do we know? Because there has not been a single, verified, documented incident since vaping began. Moreover, vape carries a fraction of the chemical called diacetyl compared to cigarette smoke – and there has not been a single incident of bronchiolitis obliterans in fag smokers either.

“We don’t know what’s in them and we don’t know the short and long term effectsâ€

We know very well what eliquid is made up from and extensive testing has identified the products once the liquid has evaporated and become vapour. Also, many of the toxin levels claim to have been found have been attributed to a dry wick being overheated – something only machines would do because it tastes bad. We know that vape does not contain the products of tobacco combustion – the causes of tobacco-related diseases. Also, we know that vaping is at least 95% safer and produces improvements in lung function.

“They’re marketed to childrenâ€

The notion that adults don’t eat sweets, cereals or donuts is a total nonsense. Likewise, the idea that only children watch cartoons is foolish. Recently, people decried a promotion linking Pokémon with vaping – but it’s almost entirely adults who play Pokémon Go.

“It’s a gateway to smoking & it normalises smoking for childrenâ€

No it isn’t and no it doesn’t, and there’s overwhelming proof: vaping has been a mainstream activity for almost a decade and, during this time, smoking rates have continued to plummet. Stats illustrate this, like those produced by Professor Robert West: Trends in e-cigarette use, presentation to European Conference on Tobacco or Health. If there were a gateway effect we’d be seeing growing rates of teen smokers – the only place this claims to happen is in the States (where they wrongly classify vaping as smoking). Recently, this study debunked the entire notion that there is a gateway effect.

“They don’t work anywayâ€

Honestly, they do. Tens of thousands of online forum members and even more social media users stand to the fact that it helps smokers escape from the grip of tobacco. Research says it works, and here, here too.