Vaping pros and cons: Do electronic cigarettes pose a higher health risk than tobacco cigarettes?

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pros and cons of vaping

Source: Composite by G_marius based on Jonny Williams' and  Dominik Morbitzer's images

We discuss the pros and cons of vaping. Electronic cigarettes are often perceived as healthier than tobacco smoking,  but do they reduce health risks?

An electronic cigarette (e-cig or e-cigarette), personal vaporizer (PV) or electronic nicotine delivery system (ENDS) is a battery-powered device which has a comparable feel to tobacco smoking when used. Electronic cigarettes do not contain tobacco but usually contain nicotine, a highly addictive stimulant from tobacco plants that is also present in tobacco products. When the e-cigarette is activated, the user inhales vaporized droplets of e-liquid, a mixture of propylene glycol, glycerin, nicotine, and flavorings (for example flavors such as the main tobacco brands blends, alcoholic beverages such as whisky, rum or champagne, herbs as menthol or spearmint and other flavors such as cola, coffee, chocolate, vanilla, etc). E-liquids are also available without nicotine. But, is vaping (inhaling the vapor produced by e-cigs) reducing or increasing your health risks? 

Pros and cons of vaping

The modern version of electronic cigarettes was invented in China in the mid 1990’s and introduced in the Chinese market in 2004. In recent years the popularization of e-cigarettes has been increasing all over the world following a decrease in consumption of tobacco products due to regulation and health campaigns. To many smokers, e-cigarettes are seen as a nicotine replacement product to quit smoking or reduce the number of cigarettes smoked. For some users vaping is even more convenient since there is rarely regulation about the use of e-cigarettes indoors. Another advantage is that the smell of e-cigs is usually more tolerable to non smokers too. Many former smokers have managed to gradually reduce their tobacco consumption until finally quitting the habit by using e-cigarettes. In most countries vaping is also cheaper than smoking.

As e-cigarettes' emissions have fewer toxic components than cigarette smoke, manufacturers of electronic cigarettes often market their product as a healthier alternative to tobacco cigarettes. However, government regulators are reluctant to approve e-cigarettes as a product that helps people quit smoking and reduce the risks of smoking tobacco. There is not enough scientific evidence to determine if electronic cigarettes can help people quit smoking. As a relatively new product, there is also not enough evidence to determine the long-term health effects of electronic cigarettes. Many users keep on smoking cigarettes in addition to vaping. Vaping is often only a temporary replacement, not a definitive solution to the problem.

Do you think vaping has more pros than cons and is better than smoking? Should regulators focus on eliminating this dependence altogether? Or do e-cigs allow for a balance of individual choice and public health concerns? Do you use e-cigs?

 

 

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