Smoking Rates Fall As Vaping Increases

Experts believe that electronic cigarettes are responsible for the dramatically declining rates of smokers locally and nationally. With people switching from tobacco to vaping in such number, the United Kingdom has never seen such a low smoking rate. Local newspapers are waking up to the phenomenon and commenting in positive terms – which can only be a good thing for the remaining smokers out there considering switching to ecigs.

The latest smoking and vaping rate figures come from the recent Opinions and Lifestyle Survey produced by the Office for National Statistics. The Survey provides “rapid answers to questions of immediate policy interest, helping to measure public awareness of new policies.”

The Office for National Statistics is a government department without a minister and its findings help Parliament to assess current approaches and decide on whether changes need to be made.

The most recent Survey found: “In the UK, in 2021, 13.3% of people aged 18 years and over smoked cigarettes, which equates to around 6.6 million people in the population; this is the lowest proportion of current smokers since records started in 2011”.

At the same time, “7.7% of … respondents, aged 16 years and over, said they currently used an e-cigarette daily or occasionally, which equates to around 4 million adults in the population; this is an increase on the estimate from 2020, where 6.4% of people reported daily or occasional e-cigarette use.”

James Tucker, Data and Analysis for Social Care and Health Division at the Office for National Statistics, believes there is a link between the continued rise in the number of vapers and the “statistically significant decrease in the proportion of smokers from 2020”.

The Office for National Statistics said: “Vaping devices such as e-cigarettes have played a major role in the decrease in smoking prevalence in the UK.”

Sutton is home to, and has witnessed electronic cigarettes helping to power the smoking rate down to below the national average. With just 12.1% of the local population now smoking, this could become one of the first regions in the United Kingdom declared as being “smoke free” – according to the Government, this would mean a smoking rate of 5% of the population or less.

Anti-smoking public health charity Action on Smoking and Health declared the latest findings “great news”, adding that ecigs can be “lifesaving tools” for smokers who are struggling to quit tobacco use.

Local newspapers around the country celebrated the good news in their regions. From Dorset to Greater Manchester, newsrooms reported how smokers had successfully switched to vaping.

Fewer people in Wigan are smoking as rising number turn to e-cigarettes,” sang one article in typical fashion.

January may be almost over, but 2023 could still be the year you make your successful transition away from tobacco, after all it’s working for record numbers of others!