Young people and vaping
Vapes, or e-cigarettes, are devices that enable users to inhale nicotine in vapour, generated by heating a liquid (e-liquid), rather than smoke. In the UK it is illegal to sell vapes to under 18s. Young people who have never smoked should also be discouraged from vaping.
That’s why there’s a minimum age of sale for vaping products in the UK. It is illegal to sell nicotine vaping products to anyone under 18 or for adults to buy them on behalf of under-18s.
Helping smokers to quit is one of the best things we can do for their health. Using vapes (e-cigarettes) is a quitting tool many addicted smokers find effective, and given the multiple and immense health risks of smoking it is much safer to vape than to smoke. The healthiest option is not to smoke or vape. So, if you are vaping to quit smoking, you should aim to eventually stop vaping too.
Vaping is however not risk-free. We do not know the long-term effects of many vape ingredients and companies deliberately inducing nicotine addiction in others to maximise profits is not in the interests of the person being addicted. Non-smokers should therefore be encouraged not to start vaping, and in particular not to use vapes containing ingredients such as nicotine, the main aim of which is to addict them.
If you’re under 18 and want to know the facts about vaping, find out more on the FRANK website.