The Future Of Smoking: Are E Cigs The Answer?
There can be no doubting the popularity of electronic cigarettes with well over one million users of the products here in the United Kingdom. Vaping is on the increase and appears to be the future of smoking, but are electronic cigarettes the answer?
Electronic cigarettes are certainly a much healthier alternative to conventional tobacco smoking, which can easily be seen when comparing the risks associated with the two types of smoking. When a regular tobacco cigarette is burnt, thousands of chemical compounds are created and not only are several of these responsible for causing cancer, but these chemicals will harm practically every organ within the human body.
Tobacco smoke includes tar which is the collective name for all of the different particles that are suspended in the smoke – most of these are the cancer causing substances – in addition to carbon monoxide which reduces oxygen intake, hydrogen cyanide which prevents the clearance system in place in our lungs from working correctly plus other highly reactive chemicals that damage muscles in the heart as well as blood vessels. The list is far from complete – factor in radioactive compound and carcinogenic dangerous metals – but already makes for highly grim reading. However vaping eliminates all of this, as there are no dangerous chemicals associated with electronic cigarettes, which also do away with the nasty smells, stained teeth and the likes and hence gives the user a much better social perception.
While electronic cigarettes can certainly be described as a healthy alternative to the conventional tobacco cigarettes it would be wrong to describe vaping as totally healthy or even as an aid to enable the user to quit smoking altogether. The main reason for this is because the electronic products still contain nicotine, which is a stimulant. While it provides that particular buzz associated with smoking, it is the nicotine that goes to the brain fast and can subsequently make the user feel depressed or perhaps anxious. One good thing is that the levels of nicotine can be controlled with a range of different strengths available and many companies also supply nicotine free flavours so it is possible to gradually decrease the level of intake.
There is also another worry – an increasing number of children who have not touched a regular cigarette are beginning to experiment with vaping (usually in a bid to look cool), which of course is a concern. There have also been issues in the past with a lack of regulation, as electronic cigarettes became something of a grey area. In February this year the European Parliament approved the draft of a tough new set of legislation, although fears that e-cigs would wrongly be classed as medicines proved unfounded. The new rules if they were to come into force would include limitations on maximum sizes for cartridges and also cap nicotine strength at twenty milligrams per millilitre.
In conclusion, electronic cigarettes have provided an answer to how to wipe out some of the deadly diseases caused by the old school tobacco cigarettes. The problem it would seem is that this particular solution has brought with it a new and more difficult set of questions.