Smoking, like all other addictions, is not as easy to shake off as it sounds. However, with the smoking cessation products available on the market, such as nicotine patches and gum, quitters can surely improve their odds of success. The latest craze to offer hope for quitting is the electronic cigarette, commonly known as smokeless cigarette.
Advertised as a safer alternative to conventional cigarettes, the electronic cigarette is a supposedly viable solution to quitting smoking. Like nicotinic patches, electronic cigarettes are also categorised as a form of nicotine replacement therapy (NRT), as they sooth cravings for nicotine. Smokeless cigarettes, which are a latest buzz amongst smokers, are claimed to be safe cigarettes that are devoid of toxic smoke.
Designed to look and feel like real cigarettes, electronic cigarettes help derive the pleasure of smoking. These battery-powered devices use heat or ultrasonics to vaporise a solution of nicotine dissolved in propylene glycol. Smokeless cigarettes, as the name suggests, produce no harmful smoke like conventional cigarettes, rather releasing water vapour containing nicotine, propylene glycol and a scent that simulates the flavour of tobacco.
Like traditional cigarettes, e-cigarettes also provide doses of nicotine to the body, but as the liquid nicotine in the mouth piece is delivered in form of vapour, a smoker is not subjected to harmful cancer causing chemicals that are likely to cause harm to you when you smoke tobacco. More importantly, these e-cigarettes don’t inflict harm on others. Unlike conventional cigarettes, electronic cigarettes are available in many incarnations, most of which are portable and reusable, with replaceable and refillable parts.
Even though the manufacturers argue that smokeless cigarettes are devoid of harmful chemicals, experts don’t consider them as a good smoking alternative. Resorting to smokeless cigarettes, makes an individual more so addicted to nicotine that withdrawal becomes an almost daunting feat, although achievable with willpower.
Nicotine addiction in the long term can also to cause irreversible damage to the brain. In spite of their growing popularity with the public, researchers are unsure on the safety aspects. Due to lack of safety data on electronic cigarettes, it is illegal to sell e-cigarettes as a stop smoking aid in the UK, though the ban is under review.
Until more researches validate its safety, assuming that electronic cigarettes are not 100% harmless is the best way to go about. In any case, e-cigarettes, when compared to traditional cigarettes, seem to be a less harmful alternative. On this note, choosing between conventional cigarettes and electronic cigarettes should be an easy decision to make.