WeCare Medical Group follows COVID safe practices
WeCare Medical Group follows COVID safe practices

Quitting smoking: is vaping an option?

If you’re like most smokers, you want to quit. Statistics show that somewhere between 70% and 80% of smokers want to quit. It’s hard though. Really hard. 

Maybe you’ve tried going cold turkey, maybe you’ve tried psych support, maybe you’ve tried a formal ‘quit smoking’ program. Maybe you’re now wondering if vaping might help. Would it? 


What is vaping? 

Vaping is the name for using e-cigarettes. You add a liquid to the battery-powered e-cigarette, which heats it up and turns it into a vapour that you breathe in. 

E-cigarettes come in various forms and may look like traditional cigarettes, cigars or pipes or may look like something totally different like a pen or a memory stick. 


Is vaping safe? 

No. The only safe thing to inhale is fresh air. 

The liquids and aerosols used in vaping may contain nicotine and a number of other toxic chemicals, including cancer-causing agents like formaldehyde, acetaldehyde and acrolein.

E-cigarettes don’t contain tar, one of the key cancer-causing ingredients of traditional cigarettes. But it’s often hard to know what e-cigarettes do contain because the labels are often incomplete or inaccurate. 

We do know, though, that e-cigarettes often pave the way for young people to start the dangerous habit of smoking. And they don’t necessarily help people to quit. Many people become dual users, both smoking and vaping.


Can nicotine vaping help you quit smoking? 

We don’t really know yet. Right now, there are only a few small studies available, most of which have design flaws. At the moment, there’s insufficient evidence to tell us for sure.

So nicotine vaping may help you quit smoking or it may not. That’s something to discuss with your GP.


Access to vaping: a delicate balance

The government is treading a delicate line when it comes to regulating access to nicotine vaping in Australia. 

They want to discourage access to nicotine vaping for non-smokers to prevent it becoming a pathway towards a life of smoking. However, they want to maintain access for people who are trying to quit smoking. 

That’s why, since October 1, nicotine vaping products are only available with a doctor’s prescription. You have to get them from a pharmacy – it’s now illegal to buy e-cigarettes online or in shops.


How else can you quit smoking? 

There are other options to help you quit smoking, including:

  • Contacting Quitline
  • Recognising your smoking triggers and finding other ways to respond
  • Going cold turkey (stopping immediately)
  • Gradually cutting back on cigarettes
  • Using nicotine replacement therapy
  • Taking prescription medicines that weaken your dependence on nicotine
  • Using the MyQuitBuddy app
  • Trying complementary therapies like acupuncture or hypnotherapy
  • Getting help from your GP.  


Support to quit smoking at WeCare

It’s great that you want to quit smoking. WeCare’s GPs will help you to crystallise your reasons for quitting, find techniques or programs that help you (possibly including vaping), and support you as you make those changes. 

We’ll also encourage you by showing you how your health is improving.

Your body quickly thanks you for quitting. 

  • Within 8 hours, your carbon monoxide levels drop and your oxygen levels rise, nourishing your tissues and blood vessels
  • Within a day, your heart is in better shape because it’s getting more oxygen
  • Within 2 days, damaged nerve endings are beginning to regrow
  • Within 3 days, you’re breathing more easily. 

Talk to your GP about quitting now.
Book an appointment.



All information is general in nature. Patients should consider their own personal circumstances and seek a second opinion.