A new study has found that e-cigarettes are almost twice as likely to help you quit for good compared to patches, gum and all other nicotine replacements.
The study found that by replacing gum, patches, lozenges, sprays or inhalators with an E-cigarette, the percentage of people who were able to completely quit almost doubled from 9.9% for those using nicotine replacement product to 18% for those who switched to e-cigarettes!
This is great news for people who want to quit and for the health community as well, as it gives them real evidence to show how much more effective E-Cigarettes can be.
HOW DO E-CIGARETTES COMPARE TO NICOTINE REPLACEMENT THERAPY?
Nicotine replacement therapy has traditionally been the products that smokers turn to when they try to quit smoking. The idea is that they deliver nicotine to the body without the harm from cigarette smoke and other tobacco products that all contain chemicals known to cause cancer. (1)
Nicotine replacement products that are most commonly used are nicotine gum, nicotine patches, nicotine inhalators and nicotine tablets (2). Each release nicotine that is absorbed either through the skin, or through the lining of the mouth or digestive tract.
For a very long time, whenever E-Cigarettes were compared to gum and patches they always did well, with one of the earliest study saying E-Cigarettes were just as good if not slightly better.
But E-Cigarettes were always at a disadvantage with these comparisons, as e-cigarettes weren't just being compared to the patches or nicotine gum, but against the ‘gold standard’ of quitting, which is a traditional nicotine replacement along with 4 weeks of behavioural sessions.
This skewed the numbers hugely as previous studies were comparing people who decided to pick up an E-Cigarette to others who were getting professional support to quit!
It goes to show how effective E-Cigarettes can be that they were still coming out as the same or even a bit better than patches and gum even with all that stacked against them.
That's why this study is so important. It compared people using E-Cigarettes and people who were using patches and gum and had them all attend behavioural sessions.
For the first time the playing field was level as it nullified the advantage nicotine gum and patches normally had and showed how much more effective E-Cigarettes can be!
WHAT DID THE STUDY SAY ABOUT QUITTING SMOKING WITH E-CIGARETTES?
For this ground-breaking study (3), Queen Mary University of London (supported by Cancer Research UK) found 886 smokers who had tried to quit before and split them into two groups, one group used an E-cigarette and the other were given the nicotine replacement of their choice for 3 months.
The E-Cigarette group were given enough to last about a month and then encouraged to find a flavour and strength they enjoyed. This meant the E-cigarettes were able to find a flavour and strength that suited them, and not the one size fits all approach that most other nicotine replacement products offer.
All the participants were given the behaviour support for 4 weeks, the same as would be required with the NHS Stop Smoking Services.
The results speak for themselves, 18% of smokers who were given E-Cigarettes had quit completely after a year, and only 9.9% of those used nicotine replacements had quit.
WHY ARE E-CIGARETTES GROWING IN POPULARITY?
Not only were E-Cigarettes shown to be more effective, but they were more enjoyable to use as well! The study found that E-Cigarettes were rated as being the most satisfying out of all the other alternatives.
This is of course no surprise. If you are trying to quit smoking what is more satisfying, something that produces vapour and looks and feel like a cigarette... or some gum?
As we know, there is more to a smoking addiction than just the nicotine. There is the phycological component and the hand-to-mouth habit as well. Although gum can give you the nicotine your body craves, it can’t give you the feel and satisfaction of a cigarette.
And even the people who couldn't quit completely with the e-cigarette benefited! The study found that those who were still smoking after the study ended had cut down their cigarette intake by over 50% (4). While quitting completely is the goal, less cigarettes is always better!
E-CIGARETTES ARE ALMOST TWICE AS EFFECTIVE FOR QUITTING THAN ANY OTHER OPTION - CONCLUSION
Not only are E-Cigarettes better at helping people quit, they are more satisfying to use and help more people cut down if they can't completely quit.
But the biggest positive from the study might be for the NHS. Even though Public Health England has been saying “E-Cigarettes are 95% less harmful than cigarettes” for years (5), doctors have been hesitant to suggest them.
As Cancer Research UK’s representative Sophia Lowes from the trial said “[This study] should give doctors, nurses, pharmacists and Stop Smoking Service advisers further confidence to recommend e-cigarettes as an effective means of quitting.”
As the study showed that the E-Cigarette users were happy to buy their own supply E-Cigarettes are the cheaper option for the NHS as well, as once the E-cigarette users are started they don't need a prescription to keep going.
*2024 Update - The largest review to-date, conducted by Cochrane, found 'high-certainty evidence' that E-Cigarettes are more effective for quitting smoking than traditional nicotine replacement therapy! (6)
So if you want the best product to help you quit smoking try an e-cigarette starter kit! And you can even try our starter kit for free*. Just click here and see if you can make the switch today!
*(when you purchase 1 pack of E-Cigarette refills. One per customer.)
ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Written by Mike Cameron
Mike Cameron is a former smoker of 15 years (2 packs a day) until he successfully quit using a cigalike. Mike is the Co-Founder and CEO of SMOKO E-Cigarettes and over the last 10 years, SMOKO has prevented 600M+ cigarettes from being smoked, helped their customers save £320M+ of their hard-earned money from going up in smoke and helped 10,000’s of adult smokers in 25+ countries to live smoke-free.