WHO on Friday said electronic cigarettes are “undoubtedly harmful” and should be regulated, also warned against the use of vaping products by smokers trying to quit their deadly habit. The growing population of e-cigarettes, battery-powered devices that enable users to inhale addictive nicotine liquids, as raised fears among policymakers worldwide of a new way of addiction for young people.
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Vaping exposes users to lower levels of toxins than smoking, whereas the World Health Organization said the devices still pose “health risks” to users.
The WHO said in a new report on the global smoking epidemic, “Although the specific level of risk associated with ENDS (electronic nicotine delivery systems) has not yet been conclusively estimated, ENDS are undoubtedly harmful and should, therefore, be subject to regulation.”
WHO said there are also “insufficient evidence” in support to claim e-cigarettes effectiveness in assisting smokers trying to quit conventional cigarettes.
The report suggests, “In most countries where they are available, the majority of e-cigarette users continue to use e-cigarettes and cigarettes concurrently, which has little to no beneficial impact on health risk and effects.”
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Aggressive marketing of e-cigarette and heated tobacco products by the big tobacco companies in recent years as they seek new customers. They argue such products are far less dangerous than traditional cigarettes and can help some smokers completely switch to “safer” alternatives.
But, WHO warned the tobacco industry on spreading misinformation about e-cigarettes, where e-cigarettes were “a present and real threat.” Restrictions on the use of e-cigarettes around the world are increasing.
In a report, more effort was needed to help smokers quit, said WHO, noting only “30 percent of the world’s population have access to appropriate tobacco cessation services,” such as counseling, telephone hotlines, and medication.
Only 4 percent of attempts to stop smoking succeed, without assistance.
According to WHO more than 8 million lives each year, tobacco claims either from direct use or second-hand smoke.
Whereas the number of users has declined slightly since 2007 but remains stubbornly high in the vast majority of the men at 1.4 billion. The WHO said, “People who quit tobacco can live longer, healthier and more productive lives.”
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