Vaping is back in the news
Over the past few years, Leeds Hypnotherapy Clinic has helped hundreds of smokers give up cigarettes.
And one question sometimes asked by people first enquiring about treatment is: “Would it be just easier to vape instead – use e-cigarettes rather than the real thing?”
My answer to this is simple: “When you really want to quit, I’ll be here and happy to help.”
I add that quitting is by far the better option.
I also add that when they are ready to quit, giving up will be a doddle. It will be a doddle because I’ll teach the client to understand their condition and integrate that comprehension into their unconscious, through clinical hypnosis.
You might conclude then, that I don’t think vaping is a great idea and as a consequence that the recent recommendation by the Science and Technology Committee of MPs that vaping be provided on prescription by the NHS is flawed.
This, though, is not entirely the case.
First of all, I am happy to accept that vaping is a far safer option than smoking cigarettes and that anyone not yet ready to give up entirely should make the switch from cigs to e-cigs as soon as possible.
But there are other factors to consider.
The most important of these is that the use of tobacco substitutes in smoking cessation programmes perpetuates the myth that smoking is primarily a physical addiction when in reality it is a psychological issue – like obsessive compulsive disorders it is rooted in anxiety and can be successfully treated. The reasoning and methodology of this treatment are explained in my book “Stop Smoking: It’s a doddle” which can be downloaded for free from my website.
It should be noted that treatment using clinical hypnosis is far more cost effective than vaping.
And with vaping you’re still shackled to a useless, expensive, socially-restricting habit. Figures as to how many vapers are also dual users (that is they continue to smoke tobacco too) are a concern too.
Other matters to consider regarding vaping, include the fact that, as the products have been available for only a decade, no long-term health studies have been possible; there are suspicions that vaping can damage vital immune system cells. In other words while vaping can almost certainly be deemed a safer option than cigarettes it is not correct to say the practice is without health risks.
A claim made by the science and technology committee of MPs’ report into vaping that raises concern is that there is no evidence to suggest e-cigarettes provide a gateway into smoking for youngsters. I would, however, ask from what studies has such a deduction been drawn and I would point them in the direction of studies by Cardiff University and some in the USA that might challenge such a conclusion.
Vaping in public
Finally, another matter certain to cause controversy is the suggestion that regulations on vaping in public be relaxed, so as to encourage smokers to switch from tobacco cigarettes. The obvious question here is why vapers should be allowed to expose others to their habit?
I’ll just stick to helping people quit and conclude with a quote from George Butterworth of Cancer Research UK responding to the report, who said that any changes to current e-cigarette regulations “should be aimed at helping smokers to quit whilst preventing young people from starting to use e-cigarettes.”