Effects of electronic cigarettes on health
In spite of the booming popularity of e-cigarettes in the UK, experts are still not sure of its health issues. While the e-cigarettes are widely promoted by companies as a harmless alternative to traditional smoking, many health agencies state that e-cigarettes are doing more damage to the users than help. Studies and researches on the health consequences of e-cigarettes lag much behind their popularity. Also e-cigarettes are not approved by FDA
(Food and Drug Authority) US and many other chief health authorities.
While it is a fact that the puff on an e-cigarette is less harmful than a puff in the traditional cigarette, scientists are skeptical about the toxicity of the vapors from these. The emergence of e-cigarettes set off a fierce debate among health experts about whether the e-cigarettes negate smoking problem or not. Many studies conducted on the health effects of e-cigarettes have identified the alarming toxicity of its vapors.
According to a study done by FDA in 2009, which performed an analysis on cartridges of different e-cigarettes, the cartridges were shown to contain carcinogens, toxic chemicals and nicotine. These are very addictive and the toxic chemicals involved diethylene glycol, which is an ingredient in antifreeze and is dangerous to humans. Carcinogens contained tobacco-specific nitrosamines, which may cause tumours
according to scientists. Yet another health risk can occur when an e-cigarette user refill the cartridges. The amount of nicotine in each cartridge may vary to the level that it can be critical for adults and children. Researchers found that the nanoparticles delivered by e-cigarettes can cause inflammation, heart disease, asthma and diabetes. The popularity of this vaping device is increasing rapidly and may overcome the traditional cigarettes in a few years.
A recent study done by US scientists found that the e-cigarettes vapors contain traces of solvent in which nicotine and flavour agents are dissolved. These solvents may further transform to carbonyls which is a part of cancer causing chemicals such as formaldehyde and carcinogens. If such compounds go into your lungs, it is a thing to worry as per researchers. It is entirely depending on the number and size of such tiny compounds contained in the vapor. While you are inhaling vapor from e-cigarettes, it can have large number of very small aerosols, the most harmful size that can get deposited in the tiny airways of lungs. These airways are the pipeline for moving air throughout your body.
The vapors of e-cigarettes also contain chemical flavourings and food preservatives in the vaping liquid. The hazardous germs produced as after products of these vapors are difficult to be destroyed. Scientists reason this as; the germs exposed to nicotine loaded vapors formed a solid biofilm coating that secured them. Further experiments done on animal that are exposed to e-cigarette vapor versus the unexposed ones revealed that the exposed ones had more bacteria grown in the lungs than unexposed ones.
Another study done by scientists of Athens University
, Greece found out that the so called e-cigarettes which is seen as a substitute for traditional cigarette smoking can be harmful to your lungs and respiratory system. This is primarily because of the different toxic compounds present in the vaporizing liquid. In an attempt to increase the amount of nicotine per puff, the users are allowed to increase the voltage of e-cigarettes and thereby temperature. But these advanced temperatures can generate a thermal breakdown of the solvents which in turn produce toxic carbonyls.
E cigarettes however, have still shown a significant health benefit to those who switch from the traditional counterparts to these. The e cig liquid which produces this vapour contains minimal ingredients, none of which contain harmful toxins. E liquid in the UK today offers many variants of flavours and can be bought from online shops.
Earlier when e-cigarettes were first developed, the puff was not as powerful as the puff of burning tobacco. Later the companies used latest technology to increase voltage of e-cigarettes and the temperature which deliver can more nicotine e per puff. When studies are done on people who inhaled e-cigarette vapor for 10 minutes into their lungs showed that, the inhalation caused an instant raise in airway resistance at least for those 10 minutes.
Another study from the University of Southern California found out that the second hand smoke of e-cigarette included some harmful elements like toxic components chromium and nickel as well as lead and zinc. Although these were present at levels lower than that of traditional cigarettes, some particular elements like nickel and chromium were present in higher levels too.
The basic problem here is the lack of clarity of studies done on the health effects of e-cigarettes. Different manufacturers are developing e-cigarettes with significant variation in the vapor ingredients. So the hazardous health effects purely depend on the amount of toxic materials involved in the vapor solvent. However e-cigarettes are proved and accepted as less harmful than the traditional tobacco cigarettes. But the replacement of traditional cigarettes with the popular e-cigarettes has definitely got its own risks.
E-Cigarettes No Smoke and No Danger
An electronic cigarette or electronic nicotine delivery system can be considered as a vaporizer powered by battery that provides a smoker the feeling of tobacco smoking. It helps to produce a mist instead of smoking cigarette. The fact is that an e-cigarette contains of a liquid solution which termed as e-liquid which gets vaporized with a heating element. Consequently a smoker gets the flavour of smoking. In general this e-liquid comprises of glycerin, propylene glycol, flavorings and nicotine.
If you start to find out the origin of e-cigarette then the name of China will come in the picture as China first developed e-cigarette
and it was introduced in the market of America in the year of 2007.
How E-cigarette works:
Though you can avail different patterns of e-cigarette in the market, all consist of same mechanism. An e-cigarette must include a battery, a heater and a cartridge filled with either nicotine or flavourings. As the smoker puffs on the end of an e-cigarette, there causes a vacuum and hence the battery gets charged up to heat the liquid and creates vapor. This vapor flows in the vacuum and inhaled by the smoker which finally goes into its destination that is lungs of the smoker.
Most e-cigarettes look just alike normal cigarettes as well as they are used like original cigarettes. But it has to be mentioned that you need not to worry if you have misplaced your lighter or match box before inhaling e-cigarette because there is nothing to lighten up while you are inhaling e-cigarette. In some e-cigarette devices you may observe a LED tip that will shine either in red or in any other colour depending on the product that you are using. E-cigarette liquid
can be made out of both VG and PG with VG e liquid
being more suitable for those with allergies.
Now-a-days considering the emerging market of e-cigarette, the manufacturers have decided to sell e-cigarette with USB chargers including in their package. As e-cigarette is a battery powered device, you can re-use it by charging the battery within it with the provided USB charger or car chargers. On the other hand you have to refill the liquid or need to change the cartridge to reuse your e-cigarette device.
Smokers can shift to e-cigarette in order to save money:
E-cigarette habit seems to be cheaper than smoking the original cigarette. You may avail e-cigarette in a variety of shapes and sizes in the market which are not at all expensive in comparison to original cigarette smoking. Depending on the model, manufacturer, style of the e-cigarette, you may avail a starter kit which will include the main e-cigarette device, the battery to charge it up, and several cartridges for refilling the device. This full kit may cost from $30 to $100. To save more you can acquire the liquid which you need to pour in the cartridge in bulk and use it by yourself.
E-cigarettes can be smoked out in some workplaces:
As e-cigarette is considered as a smoke free product and there is little regulations regarding e-cigarette you can make use of e-cigarette in some workplaces. E-cigarette is a smokeless tobacco product and hence it has been assumed that e-cigarette has no health risks.
Though in some countries like Canada, Australia, Mexico, Israel and some cities of U.S. like New York, Los Angeles and Chicago, e-cigarettes are not allowed in workplaces. Use of e-cigarette is restricted in “vaping” lounges or within the stores from where you have bought that particular device.
Alternative to quit cigarette smoking:
E-cigarette has gained its popularity in order to quit cigarette smoking. Many people have shifted themselves to the e-cigarette device from original cigarette smoking. Cigarette contains tobacco which is highly harmful for every human being, whereas e-cigarette is a tobacco free product and hence not harmful to you as well as other persons who are in surroundings of you. As the smokers get the same feeling of cigarette smoking with the device of e-cigarette, they try to quit smoking with the help of it.
Popularity of e-cigarette:
The use of e-cigarette has gained its market rapidly. In the field of American high school students, the use of e-cigarette has increased up to 10%. Similarly in UK it has increased from 700,000 in 2012 to 2.1 million in 2013. Due to its unique feature people are more clinched to it rather than smoking normal or traditional or original cigarette.
Hence it can be concluded that being a tobacco free as well smokeless product it has widely flourished its market all over the world.
E- Liquids – A comprehensive Guidebook
E-Liquid is a fluid which is an essential component of the E-cigarette that fuels it. All electronic cigarettes, irrespective of whether they are using pre-filled cartomizers or a fluid tank system, require e-liquid to produce inhaled vapor.
The main ingredients of E-liquids are Nicotine, flavouring agents and diluents.
- Nicotine: Most e-liquids contain nicotine, but the level of nicotine varies in different liquids. You can get zero level nicotine e-liquids and different levels of it depending on your preference.
- Nicotine is the stimulant in e-cigarettes and the substance that is addictive.
- Flavouring: Since nicotine has no distinct taste, in order to produce taste in your e-liquid flavouring agents need to be added. There is a wide variety of flavours available in e-liquids today; you can name a flavour and you will get it. Few very popular flavours are tobacco, mint and fruit.
- Diluents: this third ingredient of e-liquid performs three functions. The first function is to dilute the mixture of nicotine and flavours to the exact strength. Next, it adds the part of the solution that produces the vapor which is inhaled and carry the nicotine and flavour mix from e-cigarette to the user and lastly ,it generates the sensation known us ‘throat hit’, when smoke and flavour hits back of the throat.
- Commonly used diluents to make vapor are:
- Propylene Glycol (PG): This produces less vapor and more juice. It dilutes the nicotine flavour mixture to the correct thickness and helps to produce the ‘throat hit’.
- Vegetable Glycerine (VG): vegetable glycerine is thicker and it helps to produce more vapor and adds little sweetness to the mixture.
- Aqueous Glycerine (AG): As this is very thick, de-ionized water is added to reduce its thickness and this is used when you mix your own e-liquid at home.
E-Liquid Strength: The strength of your e-liquid is the amount of nicotine in a set volume of e-liquid. Your individual e-liquid strength depends on many factors. There are different opinions on how much strength a daily one pack regular cigarette smoker needs; some say that it is 1.2% nicotine in their e-liquid and many say that they require more. Now e-liquid manufacturers are often referring to the percentage of nicotine in the solution. That is each 1mg/ml of e-liquid contains by volume 0.1% of nicotine, using this notation, an 18mg/ml e-liquid contains 1.8% nicotine.
If a conventional cigarette packet says that it has 1.8 mg of nicotine in the product, it means that each cigarette in the pack has 1.8mg nicotine in it, which makes the total nicotine content of a pack of 20 cigarettes 36 mg. When you consume or ’vape’ e-liquid with 1.8% strength, it means you are inhaling 18 mg of nicotine with each one ml of the e-liquid which makes it equal to the nicotine provided by 10 1.8 mg regular cigarettes.
E-Liquid Quality: No E-liquid will taste exactly like a normal cigarette because of the absence of tobacco in it. You can choose from a wide variety of E-liquids available, varying from natural and organic to nicotine free e-liquids according to your preference. Always remember to keep your e-liquid in a cool and dry place which is not exposed to direct sunlight.