While the U.S. Navy has recently announced a temporarily vaping ban when onboard ships, a new study by the University of Buffalo indicates that soldiers have a vastly different opinion. To be fair, naval command officials have not ruled out the practice of vaping entirely. They just want more research into the allegations that defective batteries can lead to unwanted e-cig explosions. They also fully support vaping on-land and in designated areas.
The new research study from the University of Buffalo began by surveying some 105 members of the U.S. Army Reserves and the National Guard before expanding the study to include another 300 participants that include military family members. The research team led by Dr. Lynn T. Kozlowski, a professor of the university’s School of Public Health, also note that vaping is not completely risk-free, but it is considered to be significantly healthier than smoking by as much as 90 percent.
Outline of the military soldier vaping study
The sample group of over 400 volunteers consisted of four groups – daily smokers, daily vapers, and intermittent users of both smoking and vaping. Participants were regularly surveyed about a variety of issues and their related levels of personal enjoyment. The demographics of the participants were of the following criteria.
- 53 men
- 52 women
- Ages range between 18 and 45 years
- 64 percent listed as having “some college”
- 15 percent listed as having a college degree
- 18 percent listed as having a high school diploma
- 3 percent listed as having “less education”
- 83 percent Caucasian
- 8 percent Black
- 6 percent Hispanic
- 8 percent “other”
Over the course of the study, the scientists further categorized the participants into three groups of vapers –Daily Users, Non-daily users, and Triers. What they discovered is that as soldiers progressed through the three different stages, their associated preference levels of vaping compared to those of. smoking rose sharply. Meanwhile, their fears and anxieties about vaping being allegedly dangerous declined incrementally.
“Although there is some indication of causal gateway effects, the effects have been small with limited controls for confounding variables and overall evidence for a causal gateway effect that could have a major effect on public health is unconvincing. Evidence arising from secular trends in cigarette and e-cigarette use does not support that there is a gateway effect.”
“Those who try to exaggerate fears of vaping products should consider their role in keeping smokers smoking. Telling people only that no product is 'safe' is an irresponsible message.”
The military vaping study published by the University of Buffalo is considered the first of its kind. In its conclusory section of the paper published in the online journal Preventative Medicine Reports, Dr. Kozlowski and his team state that the majority of participants found that vaping and e-cigs are “much more satisfying and less dangerous than cigarettes.”