Smoking involves the burning of tobacco which produces smoke containing nicotine. This is then inhaled, delivering nicotine to the body. By contrast, vaping heats up an e-liquid (often containing nicotine) which is vapourised and inhaled by the user.
No doubt, the best option for any smoker is to quit tobacco and nicotine use altogether. The negative effects of smoking are well-known and the process of burning tobacco produces over 6,000 chemicals, of which about 100 have been identified as causes or potential causes of smoking-related diseases.
With vaping, the process of ‘burning’ or combustion is taken out of the equation. This reduces many of the toxins associated with the smoke produced from cigarettes. Consequently, vaping is widely regarded as a better choice than continued smoking. However, vaping is not risk free and without question, the best option for any smoker is to quit tobacco and nicotine use entirely.
What is the difference between vaping and smoking?
|Contains nicotine||Yes. (However, nicotine-free options are available)||Yes|
|Contains real tobacco||No. (Tobacco-flavoured options available)||Yes|
|Burns to create smoke||No||Yes|
|Heats to produce vapour||Yes||No|
|Uses an electronic device||Yes||No|
|Lingering smell||The smell can dissipate faster than with cigarettes depending on the ingredients contained in the vape||Yes|
|Affected by the menthol ban||No||Yes. Flavoured and/or mentholated cigarettes are now banned|
|Addictive||Yes. However, nicotine-free options are available.||Yes|
Other alternatives to smoking
Vaping has become an extremely popular alternative to cigarettes both globally and within the UK. Many smokers have been able to remove cigarettes from their lives completely by switching to vaping.
However, some smokers find the experience of vaping too different from cigarettes and simply do not get used to the taste, flavour or ritual. It is worth knowing then that in the UK, for those smokers who can’t quit or do not want to, there are a variety of alternative products available. Alongside vaping, these include heated tobacco products and nicotine pouches which are also widely commercially available.