At the height of discussions among health experts and legislators whether or not electronic cigarettes are effective smoking cessation aids, the France’s INPES Health Barometer has announced the verdict of the public. INPES (French National Institute for Prevention and Health Education) is a telephone health survey to determine French behavior and attitudes regarding health. According to its 2014 survey focusing mainly on smoking in France, an estimated 400,000 people are able to quit smoking aided by electronic cigarettes.
E-Cigarette Usage in France
The 2014 INPES Health Barometer surveyed representative sample consisting of 15,000 people whose ages range from 15 to 75. The data revealed that despite the fact that 99 percent of the population has some knowledge about e-cigarette, vaping is not a widespread practice. Only 26 percent or around 12 million people have tried ecigs at least once, while 6 percent or about 3 million are regular vapers and 3 percent or 1.5 million are ecig users on a daily basis.
Three quarters of daily vapers are still smokers, while the remaining quarter is composed of former smokers. Majority of the vapers admit using ecigs on the average for four months, while 9 percent reports to be ecig users for more than a year. Majority of users are young male, 45 percent of which is aged 15 to 24 years old who have tried ecigs, while 5 percent is comprised of 65 to 75 years old. The respondents’ common reasons for using electronic cigarettes include nicotine addiction, rising costs of tobacco cigarettes and for healthy lifestyle.
Related Studies to Support INPES Finding
After analysing data gathered from the survey, the 2014 INPES Health Barometer yields an important finding. The result showed that around 0.9 percent of the French population or an estimated 400,000 people are able to kick their smoking habit with the help of electronic cigarettes. Current smokers have noted an average decrease of 8.9 cigarettes in their daily consumption when they use ecigs.
The finding is supported by several scientific studies, including the clinical study conducted by the Italian Observatory for Smoking, Alcohol and Drugs (OSSFAD). Even if the study is still underway, there is enough evidence demonstrating the effectiveness of electronic cigarettes as smoking cessation tools. Similarly, a team at the Montreal Chest Institute led by Dr. Gaston Ostiguy carried out a new research on hardcore smokers suffering from various health problems due to smoking. The result shows that ecigs work better than other classic means such as traditional nicotine replacement therapies in helping smokers quit.
The Action on Smoking and Health (ASH) also commissioned a recent UK survey which revealed the impressive rate at which people are switching to electronic cigarettes. The top reasons given by respondents include their perception that ecig devices can help them stop smoking or keep them off tobacco.
Electronic Cigarettes as Quit Smoking Aids
All the figures arising from these studies are believed to be the reason for the dramatic rise in the popularity of electronic cigarettes for the past years. The rise in the usage of ecigs suggests that smokers are increasingly turning to these devices because they are convinced that their smoking habit can be reduced or kicked for good.
The results of the studies are welcomed by the e-cigarette industry in its effort to debunk the gateway theory. Scary tactics to establish the premise that ecigs are luring people to tobacco smoking are not working at all. In fact, what’s happening is the reverse. More and more people are switching into electronic cigarettes to help them quit smoking. It seems electronic cigarettes have the potential to become the most effective anti-tobacco device to take the smokers’ world by storm.