E-cigarettes have clearly made their way into Australian society. So, what’s the problem? Well, for a start, there’s a lot misinformation about them
According to reports this week, Australia’s Therapeutic Goods Administration (TGA) has made an interim decision that nicotine-based e-cigarettes will be available for people to buy at chemists, provided they have a script from their doctor indicating that use is for smoking cessation purposes.
The final decision is expected toward the end of the year.
The impact of this decision on rates of e-cigarette use and public health will be closely watched, but one thing is for certain, electronic cigarettes (or e-cigarettes) have grown rapidly in popularity around the world.
In Australia, data from the National Drug Strategy Household Survey indicates a significant increase in use of the devices over the last six years.
Concerningly, it isn’t just adult smokers using e-cigarettes: rates of use have also increased significantly among non-smokers and adolescents.
E-cigarettes have clearly made their way into Australian society. So, what’s the problem?
Well, consumers have a right to know about the products they are buying. Be it cereal, yoghurt, bread, or alcohol (just to name a few), we need to be adequately informed about what we are consuming.
Unfortunately, misinformation about e-cigarettes is widespread. It’s time to set the record straight.
So, let’s debunk the myths about e-cigarettes and separate fact from industry-written fiction.
MYTH #1: E-CIGARETTES ARE HARMLESS
FACT: Although marketed as a healthier alternative to traditional cigarettes, e-cigarettes are not harmless.
Dr Michelle Jongenelis, University of Melbourne; Christina Watts, Cancer Council New South Wales and Maurice Swanson, Australian Council on Smoking and Health – September 23, 2020.