Electronic cigarettes can help smokers kick the habit boosting quitting rates by 60 per cent compared with nicotine patches, gum or relying on will power alone, new research has found.
The findings, published today, follow a survey of 5,863 smokers in England who attempted to stop smoking without aid of prescription medication or professional support.
Of those using e-cigarettes, a fifth reported having quit ‘real’ cigarettes at the time the study was carried out.
The research, published in the journal Addiction, suggests that e-cigarettes could play a positive role in reducing smoking rates, say experts.
Study leader Professor Robert West, from University College London, said: ‘E-cigarettes could substantially improve public health because of their widespread appeal and the huge health gains associated with stopping smoking.
‘However, we should also recognise that the strongest evidence remains for use of the NHS stop-smoking services.
‘These almost triple a smokerâ€™s odds of successfully quitting compared with going it alone or relying on over-the-counter products.’