Electronic cigarettes review
Electronic cigarettes don’t produce smoke. They produce a vapour but that has not stopped the research into the risks and uses. Two recent studies bring up some very important questions.
The nicotine inhalers operated by batteries are known as electronic cigarettes, e-cigarettes and e-cigs. They are becoming extremely popular around the world, with the US sales doubling to .7 billion, predicted by financial analyst Wells Fargo.
The increase in sales has happened thanks to more online marketing and television campaigns. Celebrities, such as Stephen Dorff and Jenny McCarthy have helped encourage people to use them and benefit from the tobacco-free habit.
E-cigs are stylish and look just like normal cigarettes at a glance, but they’re completely guilt-free. Not only are they free of tobacco and other nasty chemicals, they have less nicotine in them than many cigarettes on the market. They’re great for those who want to quit smoking, but need to do it slowly.
More Research Is Required Right Now!
According to a recent study, which can be read in The Lancet, electronic cigarettes can be compared easily with nicotine patches when it comes to helping people quit smoking over a period of six months.
However, this study simply compares the two products and one of those is already a popular aid for quitting smoking. There is still a lot that is unknown and many countries have looked into banning the products because there are risks that are simply unknown. More research is needed to determine whether these products really are safe for the person and those around. Some countries, like France, have added them to the list of products covered by the smoking ban, until more in understood and known about them. In fact, the European Union is looking into banning the sale of the products completely because so little is known.
Chris Bullen, the University of Auckland’s National Institute for Health Innovation director has urged for much more research right now.
However MD Anderson Cancer Center at Houston expert, Alexander Prokhorov, is happy that at least some research is being done and the results are “starting to appear”. He does admit, though, that nicotine can be poisonous as well as addictive, so e-cigarettes are not neutral.
There is the possibility that e-cigs will never help someone quit smoking. Because of the look and the habit, they simply give someone a slightly healthier option, so they can still smoke. Of course, this does depend on the addiction. There will always be that risk that a smoker will just move back onto regular cigarettes.
E-Cigarettes Are Not Risk-Free
There is a lot going around about how electronic cigarettes are the risk-free alternative to smoking. That is not the case. While they do have fewer toxins that normal cigarettes, cigars and pipes, there is still a lot that is unknown. France and other countries are not completely out of line with bringing in their bans. According to the director at the University of California’s Center for Tobacco control Research and Education in San Francisco, Stanton Glantz, there could be a tenth of the toxins compared to conventional cigarettes, but there is still much more to learn.
There are still dangers within the electronic cigarettes. The e cigarette vapor is still just as harmful. According to a study in France, the chemicals are just as dangerous as tobacco, such as molecule acrolein. There is also a lack of child-safety on the caps, which make them dangerous in different ways to traditional products.
Instead of switching completely, Glantz states that there are many who smoke both, meaning they have risks from two different products.
At the moment, there is no quality control over these electronic products, either. The FDA still hasn’t approved the use of any product on the market, as there is still much more research into the benefits as well as the risks. The FDA also found some of the same carcinogens as the French studies. So far, only therapeutic purposes are covered by the FDA, but it does want to broaden the regulations so all types of e-cigs and tobacco products are covered.
One of the biggest questions that people have to answer is why would they want to use a product that hasn’t been fully tested? Why would they want to risk their lives on something with little to no quality control? While the study in The Lancet states that the e-cigs are no worse than the nicotine patches, there is nothing to state that they are better, either.
Cigarettes for Teenagers?
A growing concern is the age for those using the e-cigarettes. According to a study by the Centers of Disease Control and Prevention, students in middle and high school are now using the e-cigs and that number has grown by twice as many from 2011 to 2012. 1.78 million US students have at least tried the cigarettes.
According to the CDC’s Office on Smoking and Health director, Tim McAfee, 90% of smokers start during their teenage years. Since e-cigarettes have different flavours and are easier to get their hands on them, they are attractive and something “cool” to have. The manufacturers are appealing to the younger smokers, and they develop the habit at a younger age. While there are currently no studies or proof of this, it should be assumed that starting younger on these types of cigarettes will lead to people smoking conventional ones later in life.
Prkhorov worries about this two and sees e-cigarettes as a gateway to the traditional smoking. Once people are hooked on nicotine, it will be harder to break the habit later. Glantz would like to see regulations on the flavors; even banning them completely like have happened with tobacco cigarettes. He would also like to see an age restriction, which is supported by a number of European Union countries. There is also a call by many countries to see the sale online being banned.
The manufacturers claim that they don’t market to children, but that is highly debateable. Some of the flavours include cherry, strawberry and vanilla. However, there are flavours linked to children such as bubblegum and cookies and cream!
It is really important to help prevent younger children start smoking, which is difficult in an industry that has an billion marketing budget. Unfortunately, the 2012 Tips from Former Smokers campaign from the CDC had a much smaller budget of million.
McAfee worries that “e-cigarettes are being glamorized”, which makes it difficult to convince them that it is a bad thing. Media critics have started to liken the current ads for e-cigs to the 1950s smoking ads, which glamorized that form of smoking until the truth was known.
Article Posted: 29/11/2013 01:00:01
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