An e-cigarette, or electronic cigarette, is a small battery powered device that delivers a nicotine and propylene glycol liquid solution in a vaporized form when inhaled air activates an atomizer. It does not contain the substances commonly found in regular cigarettes such as tobacco, tar and other cancer causing carcinogens. They do not involve flames or smoke. Because of these substantial differences between electric cigarettes and tobacco cigarettes, some smokers have opted to buy electric cigarettes instead.
But what are the health and safety benefits and disadvantages? One of the most obvious benefits of electronic cigarettes is that they lack of an actual flame. Every year, almost 1,000 smokers and non-smokers are killed in home fires caused by cigarettes or other smoking materials. If you remove the factor of fire, which e-cigarettes do, the lives of smokers and their families will be much safer. Where there is no fire, there is no actual smoke as well. That removes the health risk of second hand smoke inhalation, which is the cause of many illnesses for individuals that have been exposed to the smoke of cigarettes in workplaces, homes and public places that allow smoking. Because of the risk of second hand smoke, many public establishments have banned smoking. This has left smokers feeling ostracized and segregated. But e-cigarette users do not usually experience this because they are not technically smoking; they are merely inhaling a vapor. When the vapor is exhaled it leaves no smell, and dissipates harmlessly into the air within seconds.
As with any inhaled foreign substance there are certainly risks and disadvantages. E-cigarettes can not officially be called healthy because users are still ingesting nicotine, an addictive chemical. But they can opt to use the zero nicotine cartridges that can be supplied with the electronic cigarettes, a feature not available with traditional cigarettes. And there is something to be said for ingesting basically just nicotine instead of a combination of nicotine, tobacco, tar, arsenic, carbon monoxide and hydrogen cyanide, which are all produced in regular cigarettes by means of combustion.
Just like conventional tobacco cigarettes, since electric cigarettes contain an addictive substance, they are neither sold nor marketed towards underage individuals. In most countries, steps such as requiring valid identification or special cards before purchasing e-cigarettes have even been taken to ensure that e-cigarettes are not readily available to individuals that are not old enough to purchase tobacco cigarettes either. Much like conventional tobacco cigarettes, e-cigarettes are sold in the United States only to those over the legal age limit. These precautions are, of course, for the protection of youths.
Even though there is still much controversy surrounding the selling and use of electronic cigarettes, the benefits of considering them as an alternative are clear. And really, don’t adults who have already chosen to continue to smoke despite the health warnings and concerns deserve an option with distinct advantages? It is not for anyone else to make this decision for the smoker. After weighing all options, researching and reading electronic cigarette reviews, each individual must decide if, for them, the benefits of e-cigarettes outweigh the risks.
With the overabundance of information on tobacco cigarette use, it is no wonder that consumers are eager for an alternative. E-cigarettes, or electronic cigarettes, are just the alternative needed. Even in the face of negative press and warnings from the FDA and the threat of ban in the United States, many are forced to agree that Electronic cigarettes certainly have their benefits and advantages.
E-cigarettes are for those that want to enjoy nicotine but don’t want other harmful chemicals like hydrogen cyanide, ammonia and acetones to produce bad effects on their health. In these types of cigarettes, nicotine replacement cartridges are used. These cartridges stimulate the feeling of cigarette taste while giving the high obtained from the nicotine element, and all this without the involvement of dangerous tar and any of the cancer causing substances.
Though there are many variations of the electronic cigarette on the market today, from the “pen-style” to those that look like an actual tobacco cigarette, e-cigarettes generally employ the same basic components: circuitry, a rechargeable battery, an atomizer and a mouthpiece. All models operate in the same basic way. When it is inhaled upon, the air activates the atomizer to vaporize a small amount of liquid contained within the cartridge in the filter, which is in actuality a plastic mouthpiece. The nicotine cartridges used in electronic cigarettes are customizable. They are available in various nicotine strengths, from high to no nicotine at all and in an assortment of flavors that range from regular tobacco flavoring to mint or bubblegum.
Electronic cigarettes may also have a positive impact on your lifestyle and the environment. There is no flame involved, so the house fires that many smokers and their families are threatened with are less likely to occur with electric cigarettes. Since there is no fire, there is no ash to be flung about with the electric cigarette, and the vapor has the appearance of smoke, but neither smells nor lingers. The waste from electronic cigarettes is considerably less. Instead of as many as twenty cigarette butts and one or two empty boxes, there is one small plastic mouthpiece and one cartridge. The positive impact on the environment from that alone is staggering.
Though neither proven nor marketed as a smoking cessation device, electronic cigarettes may help those that want to quit smoking but haven’t had success yet. Along with the obvious health benefits, the practical benefits to smokers, such as better smelling clothing and more cash in their pockets, are enough to have smokers excited about this alternative.
E-cigarettes can also save the user money. Many smokers spend upwards of $1000 on cigarettes every year. However, the cost of electronic cigarettes is around $2.50 per pack in comparison to regular cigarettes. One cartridge for electronic cigarettes has been known to last the equivalent of two packs of regular cigarettes. Reasonably priced electric cigarettes can be found with ease online, along with replacement cartridges, mouthpieces and batteries.