What are electronic cigarettes?
Electronic cigarettes, also called personal vaporizers or smoking simulation devices that deliver an e-liquid solution made up of propylene glycol, flavoring and nicotine. The vaporization process is carried out by a battery-powered heating element called the “atomizer”. The act of “smoking” an electronic cigarette is popularly referred to as “vaping”; it mimics smoking, but doesn’t involve combustion. The individual inhales vapor, not smoke.
Electronic cigarettes come in a variety of styles, models and sizes. Many are designed to look like traditional cigarettes; these devices have atomizers built into the cartridges and are small and tubular. Others are larger in size and are built with tanks to hold the e-liquid. Typically, devices like these distance them from looking anything like a traditional cigarette.
Are e-cigs safe?
Any substance containing nicotine is not 100% safe, but electronic cigarettes do not contain tobacco; a carcinogenic ingredient and they do not produce smoke. numerous studies support that an overwhelming majority of tobacco related deaths are a result of the smoke produced and inhaled by users, not nicotine.
Do e-cigarettes contain anti-freeze?
No. This myth came from a 2009 press statement from the FDA on electronic cigarettes. The FDA tested 18 cartridges from 2 companies; one of which tested positive for a non-toxic amount of diethylene glycol (approximately 1%). Diethylene glycol, which is occasionally used in anti-freeze, is not a standard ingredient in e-liquid and has not been found in any other samples, since.
The base ingredient for e-cigarette liquid is propylene glycol. Propylene Glycol is considered GRAS (Generally Recognized As Safe) by the FDA and EPA. It is used to in non-toxic anti-freeze and considered safe for small children and pets. Propylene Glycol is a common ingredient in many foods, cosmetics, medicines and fog machines for stage performances.
Do e-cigarettes cause cancer just like regular cigarettes?
The FDA discovered trace amounts of tobacco-specific nitrosamines in e-cigarettes, which are known to cause cancer with high exposure. The amounts found were far too low to be definitively labeled as cancer-causing. An e-cigarette contains nearly the same trace levels of nitrosamines as the FDA-approved nicotine patch and about 1,300 times less nitrosamines than a traditional cigarette.
Can e-cigs help me quit smoking?
Electronic cigarettes are an alternative to traditional cigarettes; providing enjoyment without the stigma. While electronic cigarettes are not smoking cessation tools nor are they marketed that way, there may be anecdotal evidence that some people have reduced or eliminated use of traditional cigarettes.
What e-cigarette is closest to a real cigarette?
Electronic cigarettes have a few dissimilarities to traditional cigarettes that make them all the more satisfying. The best e-cigarettes on the market do not have to look like traditional cigarettes. It is really more important that they can accommodate a better quality battery and are equipped with delicious, authentic flavors. This enhances the overall performance of the product and the enjoyment of the vaping experience. For example, the tobacco flavor has a slightly sweet taste that resembles fresh tobacco, unlike the presumed burnt aftertaste of traditional cigarettes.
Is there scientific research on the safety and efficacy of electronic cigarettes available?
Yes! Please reference the studies below.