According to new research by Australian scientists, nearly two-thirds or approximately 61 percent of bipolar patients also smoke combustible cigarettes. Unfortunately, quitting smoking for people suffering from these types of severe mental disorders can be infinitely more challenging than for the Average Joe.
Because of the emotional toll involved with quitting smoking, bipolar patients can often experience a tremendous surge in their related symptoms. As a result, Aussie doctors have been searching for a more effective way to quit smoking, and they believe that vaping is the most viable alternative.
New research published on March 8, 2017, by a joint committee of scientists from the Royal Australian and New Zealand College of Psychiatrists concludes that vaping is 95 percent less harmful than smoking. These figures also copycat those previously published in mid-2016 by the Royal College of Physicians in Great Britain.
“Smokers with SMI who are unable to quit smoking could benefit from long-term substitution of combustible tobacco with ‘clean’ nicotine product such as e-cigarettes (tobacco harm reduction). E-cigarettes deliver the nicotine to which smokers are addicted without the products of combustion that cause almost all the adverse health effects of smoking (Royal College of Physicians [RCP], 2016). E-cigarette vapour contains low levels of toxins, but the Royal College of Physicians estimates the long-term risk from e-cigarette use (vaping) as likely to be no more than 5% of smoking tobacco. Similar harm reduction strategies are widely used for other harmful behaviours, such as the opiate substitution therapy and clean needle exchange to reduce risks from intravenous opiate use.”
Vaping also recommended for recovering addicts
Oddly, this new research by the Australians and New Zealanders also supports newly published American research claiming that vaping is the preferred smoking cessation method for recovering addicts. “Opiate substitution therapy,’ as referenced in the Aussie paper, is a method of addiction transference commonly employed by professional rehabilitation centers around the world.
As addicts enter recovery, they are often allowed to substitute one less toxic addiction for another more severe compulsion. For example, if a patient is trying to overcome a dependence on alcohol, their addiction counselors often allow them to smoke more often as a counterbalance. However, as smoking bans in public domains are now the law of the land – even in professional treatment centers – patients in recovery are often left without any valid options for substitution therapy.
Much like the Aussie study, an American physician and addiction specialist, Dr. Terry Sellers from Utah, has recently published an Op-Ed in the Salt Lake Tribune making similar claims that vaping is the preferred choice over smoking for those suffering from addictions of narcotics, opiates, and alcohol. Much like bipolar disorder, alcoholism and drug addiction is also considered by the medical community to be a disorder of the mind. Vaping makes the process of quitting smoking far less stressful for patients with these types of delicate sensibilities.