JONESBORO, AR (KAIT) - Many people try to quit smoking in the new year, and with new alternatives like e-cigarettes and vapor cigarettes, a new trend is starting. Vaping has become highly popular in the last couple of years, but is it a safe alternative to smoking?
Because it is so new it's hard to say, but either way many who used to smoke cigarettes say this has helped them quit.
"It's changed my life because I can play with my kids now," Jonathan Ross, manager at Razor Vapes in Jonesboro, said. "I can breathe."
Jonathan Ross smoked two packs of cigarettes a day for 20 years and said after he made the switch he was hooked.
"Holding it in your hand, it's not like a cigarette, but it gives you that comfort of being able to get that feeling you get from a cigarette, but it's a safer alternative," Ross said.
But is it really a safer alternative? Unfortunately, there may not be a definitive answer.
"We've only been around a couple of years," Ross said. "We haven't been around 100, 200 years like cigarettes. So we are still new into it, but we are four five ingredients instead of four to five thousand ingredients in a cigarette."
The risks of smoking cigarettes are undeniable, and while there is nicotine in vapor and e-cigarettes, Ross said it's different.
"Every side effect that we've seen so far has been no side effect," Ross said. "There is no second-hand smoke because what we use is nicotine in the flavoring and it's absorbed as soon as you use it."
Not all doctors are convinced it's safer because it is still putting chemicals into the body, but some suggest it could be a better alternative to get smokers on the right track. Ross hopes vaping continues to grow, and not just for the business.
"I'm hoping we can get everyone to quit smoking and start vaping," Ross said. "If we can do that we can be a whole lot healthier America."
Ross has seen the trend rise in the last couple of years, and if Razor Vapes business is any sign of the industry's future it is looking bright. Ross said with a new trend comes new responsibility, and his team encourages vapers to respect those who don't.
"We recommend as vapors to be respectful, don't go to restaurants and blow these big clouds and everything," Ross said. "Go and be respectful."
Until in-depth studies can be done, we may not know the long term effects, but Ross said his customers believe this alternative has to be better than what's in cigarette cartons.