5th May 2020

World Asthma Day is annual event which was first celebrated in 1998 to bring awareness to the lifelong condition. On the first Tuesday in May events are held annually to raise money for the cause and for the adults and children who suffer from the disease. With the current COVID-19 pandemic it is more important than ever to improve health, especially those with common chronic lung diseases and smokers around the world. More than 25 million people globally struggle with asthma daily, so there couldn’t be a better time to put down the cigarettes and improve health by switching to vaping.

The symptoms of Asthma include:

  • Coughing
  • Tightness of the chest
  • Shortness of breath
  • Wheezing
  • Fast breathing

Asthma attacks are a common occurrence for those who suffer from the illness, especially when they are exposed to certain things in their environment. Such things include: second-hand smoke, mould and dust. These environmental factors can cause the airways in the lungs to swell and shrink. They can become clogged up with mucous, which lets less air get in and out of the lungs. It is not entirely clear what causes asthma, however it can be genetic, environmental or can also be caused by occupational factors.

Why should I quit smoking?

If you are a smoker with a lung condition such as asthma, smoking tobacco can be extremely risky and often life threatening. This is due to the damage which occurs in a smoker’s lungs and airways. Not only does smoking contain 70 cancerous chemicals and 7,000 toxic chemicals, it can also damage the health of those around you, especially vulnerable children. Tobacco is one of the most common factors which triggers asthma, therefore improving your health can be as simple as reducing your exposure to it. There are many tips online to improve your health and make the change easy for yourself. Some of the most successful ways are changing to e-cigarettes and asking others to not smoke in or near your home. Online support is also available from the NHS and from your local GP.

“In England, around 60% of smokers want to quit, 10% of which intend to do so within 3 months. Currently, around half of all smokers in England try to quit unaided using willpower alone, despite this being the least effective method. Getting support can greatly increase a person’s chances of quitting successfully.”

Rosanna O’Connor, an expert from Public Health England

What is Vaping?

Vaping is the act of inhaling a heated liquid, known as vapour, from an e-cigarette which when exhaled, often produces clouds. The liquid which is vaped is made out of nicotine (optional), propylene glycol, vegetable glycerin and flavourings. Vaping has been proven to be twice as effective as nicotine replacement therapies provided by the NHS, which is the reason for it’s growing popularity.
For more information read ’13 Things you may not know about Vaping’.

Is vaping bad?

It has been proven that vaping is 95% less harmful than smoking according to Public Health England. Second-hand vapour has also been ruled harmless by Cancer Research UK, however although it is safe to vape around others in non-ventilated areas, out of politeness is it not advised.

5 Reasons why you should make the switch

  • Saving money: Quitting smoking can in turn feel like giving yourself a pay rise. According to the NHS, smokers can spend £1,825 on cigarettes per year (based on smoking 10 cigarettes each day).
  • Improving health: 23% of heavy smokers never reach the age of 65, however switching to vaping can drastically increase your chances of living longer.
  • No nasty smells: Smoking often causes lingering smells on your clothes, hair, body and breath, whereas vaping can be odourless or even smell like fruit, desserts or mint.
  • Saving the NHS: Reducing cancer risks and health conditions from smoking will free up lots of time and money within the NHS. The Royal Society of Public Health have previously calculated that quitting smoking could save up to £760 million each year.
  • Improve the health of your family and friends: Those who manage to quit smoking on average live 13 years longer than smokers. This allows them to spend more time with their families and friends while also no longer exposing them to harsh chemicals.

Read more about our research into smoking and how to improve your health.