Support from the public for electronic cigarettes is constantly growing each year as more and more legitimate studies makes its way out into the open. This confirms what vapers have always believed, that vaping is safer than smoking and it actually helps to kick the habit instead of traditional cessation products such as patches and gum. Although university research and public health organizations around the world are constantly publishing more and more new studies to support this, the FDA is going the opposite way by ramping up their enforcement and regulations of electronic cigarettes.
The FDA had begun regulating these products all the way back in 2009, and are now placing tighter restrictions on the marketing of these products and sales to minors. Government surveys which are obviously skewed have suggested that teen vaping is rising. The FDA had recently issued more than a thousand warning letters and penalties to retailers accused of selling vaping related products to youths. If the FDA had conducted surveys a few years ago on cigarettes, it will be the same result with “teen smoking rising”. Depending on the outcome, the month of November could be a turning point for the vaping industry in the United States.
Of course, youth vaping is definitely an issue to be concerned about, but what about the values that vaping provides for adult smokers? A study from the Washington University School of Medicine had analyzed data from smokers above the age of 22. This is to help determine if vaping really helped smokers to reduce their tobacco usage. The research had found that more smokers had either quit or attempted to quit ever since electronic cigarettes became widely available with easy access.
Researchers had also found that smokers who had tried vaping had made more attempts to quit. Similar patterns were discovered by researchers at the University of California-San Diego. The conclusion from these studies was that electronic cigarettes played an important part in ensuring a higher quit rate for the general population. Even the National Institute of Health had concluded that smokers who frequently use electronic cigarettes are more likely to quit.
The evidence is already set out as a fact, that electronic cigarettes definitely help smokers to quit tobacco. Sensible public health policies would definitely try to embrace this as a good thing and provide encouragement to smokers to try vaping, which is what the British Royal College of Physicians has been doing for the past few years. The FDA however, is still taking a hostile stance on e-cigs, with their latest statements suggesting a tighter restriction and limitations.
FDA Commission Scott Gottlieb has publicly stated that the agency will not allow the current trends in youth vaping to continue, even if it means limiting adult smokers’ access to vaping. In other words, the FDA is not giving adult smokers a chance due to some bad apples selling products to kids. Despite all the evidence and findings, the FDA continues to wage their war against vaping just because of “underage use”, and the fact of the matter is that electronic cigarettes are not as harmful as other products such as cigarettes, drugs, and the sort.
Everyone agrees that minors should not be allowed to buy or even use electronic cigarettes, and regulations and restrictions should be implemented properly, not at the cost of adult smokers. Adults struggling with tobacco addiction deserve the rights to have safer alternatives to smoking as well.