Quitting Support Limited For Those Wanting To Kick Vaping – Agencies

Quitting Support Limited For Those Wanting To Kick Vaping – Agencies

Quitting Support Limited For Those Wanting To Kick Vaping – Agencies

Vaping has become a prevalent habit among a growing number of individuals, but many who want to quit are finding limited support from agencies and programs. While resources exist to assist tobacco smokers in their journey to quit, those addicted to vaping are facing challenges finding the help they need.

Ready Steady Quit and Quitline, two popular smoking cessation programs, are increasingly being directed towards individuals addicted to vaping, even if they have never smoked cigarettes. Te Whatu Ora Health NZ, the organization behind these programs, advises individuals looking to reduce their nicotine consumption to consult with their general practitioner or a specialist vape retailer.

However, the providers of Ready Steady Quit, ProCare, specify that their funding is geared towards supporting tobacco smokers. As a result, they are unable to assist vapers who have never smoked or who have been vaping for over 12 months. Whakarongorau Aotearoa, the organization that runs Quitline, states that their Quit Vaping program is designed for people who vape to quit smoking tobacco.

Statistics from the Ministry of Health reveal a concerning trend among young people. The number of daily vapers aged 15 to 17 has quadrupled in the span of three years, rising from 2% in 2018-19 to 8% in 2021-22. This alarming increase in vaping prevalence highlights the urgent need for support services tailored specifically to those seeking to quit their vaping habits.

ProCare has expressed its willingness to provide support services for vapers but currently lacks the necessary funding and training. Conversations with funders have been initiated, but no confirmation of financial support has been secured thus far.

The absence of specialized support services poses a significant challenge for individuals struggling to quit vaping. A Year 13 student from an Auckland secondary school shared his experience, detailing his addiction to vaping and the difficulties he faced in quitting. The student spent a substantial amount of money on vaping products and highlighted the importance of having someone in his life who supported his decision to quit. He emphasized the potential impact that a professional service targeting vaping cessation could have, particularly for young people.

Sharon Pihema, the Māori Liaison for the Asthma and Respiratory Foundation, added that teenagers who have been vaping for an extended period find it exceedingly challenging to give up the habit. The foundation receives numerous inquiries from concerned educators, parents, and grandparents seeking guidance on how to address vaping addiction in their communities and families.

Despite the government’s focus on Smokefree Aotearoa 2025 work, Pihema highlights the apparent neglect surrounding the vaping issue. She argues for more comprehensive efforts to combat vaping addiction, as it affects every community and secondary school throughout the country.

In response to the growing concerns around youth vaping, the government has recently implemented measures aimed at curbing the problem. These measures include the prohibition of most disposable vapes and a restriction on the establishment of new vape shops near schools. While these steps are promising, Auckland Secondary Schools Principals’ Association President Greg Pierce emphasizes the urgent need for additional support services to help students overcome their vaping habits. He acknowledges the challenges faced by schools in addressing the issue, as peer influence remains a significant factor in shaping students’ behavior.

The Year 13 student who successfully quit vaping expressed his satisfaction with the positive changes in his life. He noticed the inconvenience experienced by his friends who vape, having to leave the classroom regularly to indulge in their habit. Reflecting on his own journey, he appreciates the freedom from constantly interrupting his education and the ability to focus on his studies.

In conclusion, the limited support available for individuals seeking to quit vaping is a growing concern. Agencies and programs primarily designed for tobacco smokers struggle to cater to the unique needs of vapers. As the popularity of vaping continues to rise, it is crucial to address this issue by establishing dedicated resources and support services specifically tailored to those addicted to vaping. By providing the necessary assistance, quitting vaping becomes a more attainable goal for individuals looking to improve their health and break free from this addictive habit.

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