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Trends US Study Compares Cigarette and E-Cigarette Dependence Amongst Vapers

A study analyzing cross-sectional data from the Population Assessment of Tobacco and Health (PATH) study from 2013-2016, found that e-cigarettes use was consistently associated with lower nicotine dependence than cigarette smoking.

The study titled, “Dependence on E-Cigarettes and Cigarettes in a Cross-Sectional Study of US Adults”, compared e-cig and cigarette dependence among current and former adult e-cigarette users. The answers of a population-based representative sample of 13,311 18+ US adults, who had been administered dependence assessments for cigarettes and/or e-cigarettes were analysed.

The researchers found that current vapers were still less dependent on e-cigarettes than on cigarettes. “Findings among current users, dependence on e-cigarettes was significantly lower than dependence on cigarettes, in within-subjects comparisons among dual users of both e-cigarettes and cigarettes (1.58 [SE = 0.05] vs. 2.76 [0.04]), P < 0.0001), and in separate groups of e-cigarette users and cigarette smokers (1.95 [0.05] vs. 2.52 [0.02], P < 0.0001), and among both daily and non-daily users of each product.”

Similarly, in former vapers, cravings for e-cigarettes were lower than for cigarettes. “Among former users, residual symptoms were significantly lower for e-cigarettes than cigarettes, both among former dual users (1.23 [0.07] vs. 1.41 [0.06], P < 0.001) and among users of one product (1.28 [0.03] vs. 1.53 [0.03], P < 0.0001). The highest level of e-cigarette dependence was among e-cigarette users who had stopped smoking (2.17 [0.08]).” To this effect, concluded the researchers, vaping is associated with with lower nicotine dependence than cigarette smoking.


Cigarettes are more addictive than e-cigarettes

In line with this, a 2017 study by researchers from Penn State College of Medicine, had found that vapers are less dependent on their electronic devices, than smokers are on combustible cigarettes.


Funded by the National Institutes of Health and the Center for Tobacco Products, the data was collected from a total of 3,586 participants who were regular smokers and vapers, at 95% and 5% respectively. From the 5% e-cig users, 93% were ex-smokers, while the other 7% only experimented with cigarettes.


With regards to vapers, researchers found that they tend to use their products later in the morning after waking up, in comparison to smokers. Additionally they were found to have less cravings, found it easier to refrain from using the products in restricted areas, and were less likely to consider themselves as addicts.


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