We all know that smoking is a bad for the health, but tobacco is extremely addictive mainly due to an ingredient called nicotine.
There are different reasons why people start smoking—peer pressure, stress relief, risk-taking behaviors, genetic predisposition, media influence, among others—and there are still millions of smokers in the world today.
The Risks Of Smoking
The rate of people who acquired different diseases from smoking is also progressively increasing. The medical conditions that can be acquired from smoking include:
- Sex Impotence
- Lung cancer
- Mouth diseases
- Heart diseases
Enter electronic or e-cigarettes, which claim to be a healthier alternative and might even be a solution for people who want to quit smoking. The question is: are these claims true? Does an e-cigarette really provide good health benefits? Let’s take a closer look:
What is an e-Cigarette?
This product was introduced in the U.S. market in 2007, as a smoking alternative that aims to help smokers to quit smoking. There are many claims saying that the e-cigarette is safer to use. Some say it is not as addictive as a regular cigarette stick.
Conventional Cigarette vs. e-Cigarette
Conventional cigarettes are widely available in the market under different brands and types. Whether you like it with menthol or low-tar, smokers will never run out of options.
Electronic cigarettes, on the other hand, are designed to look just like regular cigarettes—but the difference is that they don’t require a match or lighter to use. E-cigarettes are more convenient because all you need to get fulfill your “craving” is to turn on the device and puff as you would a regular cigarette, wherever you are. It doesn’t leave any residue like ash and cigarette butts.
The device works by creating vapor with the help of an atomiser and other parts that heat up the flavoured liquid. The liquid turned vapor is what the user inhales. E-cigarettes come in different designs. The liquid used in e-cigarettes has a wide variety of flavours to choose from such as cherry, cookies and cream, melon, milkshake, strawberry, vanilla, and other food and fruit essences.
Are Electronic Cigarettes Really Safer?
Typically, the liquid used in e-cigarettes are made from nicotine, propylene glycol, glycerol, water, and added flavourings. Instead of smoking cigarettes, e-cigarettes can ease cravings for nicotine, just like nicotine patches.
Medical Journal Chest remarked that researchers found alarming results indicating that e-cigarettes are not really a safe smoking alternative, while researchers at New York University stated that e-cigarette smokers may absorb higher levels of nicotine and other harmful chemicals than those who smoke traditional cigarettes. This occurs due to the higher “frequency of puffing” and “depth of inhalation” for e-cigarette smokers.
The US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has also questioned the safety of e-cigarettes. They bureau analysed samples of two popular brands and found variable amounts of nicotine and traces of toxic chemicals in its liquid content. It includes a chemical called carcinogens, which is a cancer-causing substance. Because of FDA’s findings, the agency has issued a warning about potential health risks related to the use of electronic cigarettes.
According to the World Health Organisation (WHO), electronic cigarettes, also known as ENDS (electronic nicotine delivery systems), can be particularly attractive to adolescents.
Nicotine, if taken in excessive amounts, can be lethal (i.e. 0.5-1.0mg per kg of weight of the person). Manufacturers of e-cigarettes admit that the cartridges typically contain between 6mg and 24mg of nicotine, but there are times where it can be filled up to more than 100.
On the other hand, a previous study from Boston University School of Public Health showed that e-cigarettes can help smokers quit smoking at twice the rate as administering other traditional smoking cessation aids.
Whether a regular smoker or not, anyone can buy e-cigarettes from places like convenience stores or specialty e-cigarette shops. The safety and further health effects of using this alternative smoking device is still in question, although there are health organizations that have been trying to ban its use in different parts of United States.
If you’re planning to purchase one for yourself, remember that you need to use it at your own risk.
Many doctors, health-concerned citizens, and organizations have tried time and again to get people to quit smoking. Any of the diseases related to smoking is a big threat not just to the health, but also to the finances.
Acquiring a medical insurance can surely help you in times of medical emergencies but whether or not you have insurance, the best way to save money is still to guard your health well. Quit smoking before it’s too late.