As of May 23, 2018, when the Tobacco and Vaping Products Act received royal assent, it became federally illegal to furnish or deliver vaping products to any person in Canada under the age of 18 (TVPA Part II, Sect. 8, Sect. 9).
Reports and complaints can be filed with the Tobacco Control Directorate via their web page; https://www.canada.ca/en/health-canada/corporate/contact-us/tobacco-control-programme.html .
With all the focus on the “dramatic” youth usage, we are losing sight on what vaping is. Vaping is harm reduction for smokers who cannot, or will not, quit the use of recreational nicotine.
While we’ve been studying smoking harms since the RCP London report “Smoking and Health” was released in 1962 (two full years before the Surgeon General’s report from our neighbours to the south), vaping as we know it has been around a far lesser period. However that does not mean we have no information from reputable sources available to us.
The Royal College of Physicians (London), in their 2016 report “Nicotine Without Smoke: Tobacco Harm Reduction,” stated, “Although it is not possible to quantify the long-term health risks associated with e-cigarettes precisely, the available data suggest that they are unlikely to exceed 5% of those associated with smoked tobacco products, and may well be substantially lower than this figure.”
Other quotes from the Key Points portion of the synopsis:
• “Smoking is the biggest avoidable cause of death and disability, and social inequality in health, in the U.K.”
• “There is a need for regulation to reduce direct and indirect adverse effects of e-cigarette use, but this regulation should not be allowed significantly to inhibit the development and use of harm-reduction products by smokers.”
Closer to home, from the Canadian Cancer Society: “Smokers who have tried other methods to quit but have not succeeded could try e-cigarettes. If it helps them stay off cigarettes, individuals unable to quit completely would be better off from a health perspective to use e-cigarettes on a longer-term basis, if needed.”
And finally, from Health Canada’s own website: “Vaping is less harmful than smoking. Many of the toxic and cancer-causing chemicals in tobacco and the tobacco smoke form when tobacco is burned.”
“Vaping products do not contain tobacco and do not involve burning or produce smoke. Except for nicotine, vaping products typically only contain a fraction of the 7,000 chemicals found in tobacco or tobacco smoke, and at lower levels.”
“Switching from tobacco cigarettes to vaping products will reduce a person’s exposure to many toxic and cancer-causing chemicals.”
I would like to close with two other quotes that we would do well to remember before we throw Aunt Gladys the smoker out with the teenager in the bathwater:
“People smoke for nicotine, but they die from tar.” – Prof. Michael Russell 1976
“Cigarettes are the only legal consumer product that, when used as intended, will kill half of all long-term users.” – Scott Gottlieb, MD, Oct. 19, 2017
Thomas Kirsop, CEO, Alternatives & Options – Vapourizers and E-Liquids Ltd., operating in Morinville and St. Albert; board member, Electronic Cigarette Trade Association of Canada (ECTA)