Vape UK’s guide for vapers during the coronavirus crisis
Today marks the start of VApril 2020. VApril is the month of the year that the vaping industry dedicates to raising awareness. In light of the most important thing on everyone’s mind right now, we felt this guide should simply raise awareness about vaping during the COVID-19 pandemic.
Vaping and coronavirus: what you need to know
As COVID-19 continues to impact every area of our lives, we are being forced to quickly adapt to change. If vaping is an important part of your life, then you might be wondering how the vaping industry is adapting to meet your ongoing needs.
We are answering hundreds of varied queries every day from our customers. We wanted to publish this article to discuss some of the most common topics about vaping during the coronavirus crisis.
Coronavirus and vape politics
Firstly, let’s address the issue of fake vaping news. Seemingly, even a global outbreak isn’t enough to slow the spread of vaping related nonsense.
The American anti-vaping contingent have tried their best to link vaping to an increase in coronavirus risk. Luckily for us in the UK, the advice from Public Health England has been resolute and clear. Rosanna O’Connor, the Director of Tobacco, Alcohol and Drugs stated,
“There is currently no evidence that coronavirus can be caught from exposure to e-cigarette vapour.”
You should also read the excellent blog from Dr Konstantinos Farsalinos on the subject of ‘Smoking, vaping, and coronavirus (COVID-19) epidemic’. He eloquently separates the rumours from the rubbish, and discusses the facts about the antibacterial and antiviral properties of propylene glycol (PG), one of the key ingredients in e-liquid.
Coronavirus and vape shops
Every individual, every family, and every business is feeling the effects of coronavirus. Public facing businesses, like vape shops, are now closed to the public in the UK. The vaping industry is currently lobbying for vape shops to be seen as an essential business due to their unequivocal link with tobacco harm reduction.
We temporarily shut the doors to our Brighton store on Monday 23rd March in order to prioritise the health and safety of our customers and colleagues. However, the last thing we want to happen is that the 3 million plus vapers in the UK are faced with the prospect of only being able to satisfy their nicotine cravings by going back to cigarettes; especially at a time when the protection of our health is so critical.
For that reason, our online store remains open, and we are working around the clock to fulfil orders. We aim to maintain business as usual, at least online, throughout the UK lockdown to help ensure our customers can stay off the ciggies.
Coronavirus and vape hygiene
While we adapt to nonstop handwashing, it’s also a good time to get into the habit of keeping your vape kit sanitised. Experienced vapers will already be used to doing this; but the basics of vape hygiene bear repeating for any new vapers reading this.
Consider the fact that touching your face can infect you with the virus, so you are being advised to stop touching your face and wash your hands regularly. Also consider the fact that the virus can live on metal and plastic.
So, picture the scene: you’re at the supermarket shopping for your weekly essentials. You have no idea if the person who used the trolley before you was carrying the virus. You don’t want to risk it so you avoid touching your face until you’ve sanitised your hands. However, you do have a pull on your vape after you’ve loaded the shopping into the car. Now the virus is on your vape, and your vape is heading for your mouth.
Just as with your glasses and your phone, anything that you touch that goes near your face needs to be cleaned. Use anti-bacterial wipes to clean the body of the kit and the drip tip (mouthpiece) thoroughly and regularly. Frequently take the kit apart and run it under hot water, making sure that it is thoroughly dry before refilling with e-liquid. Finally, don’t share your vape with anyone else while the risk of cross-contamination is so prevalent.
Coronavirus and vape etiquette
Even though there is no evidence that vaping poses any increase to the risk in catching COVID-19, we’re still going to request that you avoid cloud chasing in public for the time being.
Be aware that everyone is (rightfully) concerned about their health, and the health of their loved ones. Just as you wouldn’t sneeze or cough onto somebody, you should show consideration with the amount of vape that you blow. Even when sticking to the 2m social distancing recommendation, the people around you don’t want to see your vapour and feel conscious that they’re walking into your exhaled breath particles!
If your vape kit is designed for big clouds, think about temporarily switching to a vape device that is intended for minimum vapour production. You can save the cloud blowing for the comfort of your own home where you’re unlikely to cause anybody any unwelcome concern.
Coronavirus and vape frequency
Working from home, home schooling, and social distancing all mean that many of us are now finding ourselves at home a hell of a lot more than we did a couple of weeks ago. As we try to adapt to a new way of living, we may notice certain triggers that cause us to pick up our vape more than we would have done previously.
Boredom, stress, anxiety, alcohol, or simply just the fact that you no longer have to wait for a designated work break. Any of these factors could cause you to increase your vaping frequency. If this is something you want to avoid, try leaving your vape in another room while you work or watch tv. You can always give yourself vape breaks, just like you would do at work, to keep the actual cravings at bay.
Coronavirus and vaping - takeaways
Our top priority is, and always has been, the wellbeing of our customers and our team. For that reason, we are adhering to all of the government recommendations, and keeping abreast of any changes to advice regarding vaping and COVID-19. We want to make sure you are kept fully informed of all of the relevant facts.
We also want to be sure that you still have access to all of your favourite products so that you don’t go back to smoking.
We have no way of knowing how long this crisis will continue, or how long our walk-in store will need to remain closed. Rest assured that we are working our socks off to provide you with the best possible service during these uncertain times.
We're here to help you quit smoking for good
At Vape UK, we pride ourselves on being responsible vaping advocates. We keep up to date with all of the latest news and studies; we supply high quality TPD compliant vaping products; and we are always on hand to offer helpful and honest advice about vaping. Please get in touch if you have any queries on quitting smoking.
- Nicola Webster