E-Cigarettes: Are They Safe?

Many years back, if someone told you that one day, you’ll get to see a battery-powered cigarette that doesn’t contain any of the harmful elements a traditional cigarette has, you’d probably laugh and think it’s a crazy idea. But there’s no such thing as crazy wherein technology is concerned. In 2004, the first ever e-cigarette was introduced in the market.

E-cigarette is an electronic smoking device that is designed to simulate the sensation of smoking without exposing the users or people close by to harmful chemicals found in traditional tobacco products except for nicotine. It delivers nicotine like a cigarette but the user has the control on what amount to take in. Also, the e-cigarette does not contain tar, tobacco, and other chemicals that you’ll find in a standard cigarette.

Because of its appeal as an alternative to smoking, e-cigarette has become an overnight sensation. You’ll now find it for sale on the internet and in various kiosks and stores nationwide. But just because it is widespread, it doesn’t automatically mean that it is safe and effective.

The United States Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has not yet proved the safety of these alternative smoking devices and is therefore, seeking to refuse its sales in the country. An open investigation is currently being undertaken to discover whether the e-cigarette is indeed the harmless alternative to smoking or not. If you’re also considering an investing on a stick of e-cigarette, here are some things that you have to know in order to make an informed decision.

How Does E-cigarette Work?
To use this smoking device, you need to inhale through the mouthpiece. The airflow triggers a sensor, which would then switch on a battery-powered heater. This heater vaporizes the liquid nicotine that is contained in the small cartridge. The cartridge may or may not have nicotine. This also activates the light at the end of the stick to make it seem like a real cigarette. The heater then vaporizes the propylene glycol inside the cartridge. This is the chemical used by theaters to make smoke during plays. As the user exhales, a cloud of propylene glycol is emitted, looking like smoke from a usual cigarette.

Positive Side of E-cigarette
E-cigarette is said to be good for many things. For one, if you’re planning on quitting smoking, this can help you in the process. It can give you the sensation of putting a cigarette into your mouth and inhaling smoke without having to expose yourself and others to harmful chemicals. It is also beneficial for the environment because it doesn’t give off any smoke. You can even smoke an e-cigarette in smoke-free places like airplanes, restaurants, offices, and so on.

Negative Side
As for the negative side, the safety of e-cigarettes is yet to be proven. But some people say, real cigarettes are already harmful so there is probably no harm in trying e-cigarettes if that would cut down the habit of smoking tobacco. Some experts also claim that e-cigarettes can possibly worsen and not improve a user’s nicotine habits. Having e-cigarettes around will only encourage people to take in nicotine. And because this is socially acceptable, it might encourage children to get into the habit as well.

Until scientific research gives us a conclusion, all we can do is to speculate about the safety of e-cigarettes. If you are trying to quit, the smart way would be to quit on your own without the help of electronic cigarettes and get rid of the habit permanently. Now, if you are not a smoker, there is no reason for you to use this product, which might just get you into the habit.

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