Invented in China in 2003 by a company called Ruyan, e-cigarette hit the US market in 2007 as an alternative to smoking which is a cause of many health hazards, including fatal ailments.
It has been over 10 years since e-cigarettes were launched in the market but the debate over its pros and cons is still doing rounds. While some find it an effective alternative to smoking, some talk about its harmful effects.
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In US there is no federal regulation for e-cigarettes due to which many states and cities have adopted their own regulations. Most of these regulations prohibit the sales of e-cigarettes and e-hookahs to minors. Countries including China, India, Nepal, South Korea and Switzerland have legalized the use of e-cigarettes.
To compare it with a conventional cigarette, we should first know what an e-cigarette is and how it is different from a regular cigarette.
What is an e-cigarette or e-hookah
E-cigarette also referred to as vaporizer cigarette or e-hookah is a device that emits doses of nicotine in vaporized form. It doesn't contain tobacco. It may or may not contain nicotine as most of the manufactures offer it in both nicotine-contained and nicotine-free versions. Since, e-cigarette doesn't contain tobacco; it is not subject to U.S. tobacco laws.
How e-cigarette works
The e-cigarette constitutes of a mouthpiece or cartridge that contains e-liquid or e-juice having a particular flavor. There are hundreds of e-flavors available in the market including mango, blueberry, strawberry, watermelon, chocolate, and Apple. A heating element and a rechargeable battery are the others components of e-cigarette.
As the user sucks the cigarette, the heating element gets activated, which in turn vaporizes the e-liquid or e-flavor stored in the mouthpiece or cartridge. While some e-cigarettes have a automatic mechanism to activate the heating element, some have a button which needs to be pressed to activate the element. Sometimes there is a LED to indicate element is activated.
Who can use e-cigarette?
E-cigarette is intended at weaning regular smokers away from tobacco towards a non-tobacco alternative. According to a research by Centers of Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), the consumption of tobacco causes over 5 million deaths per year across the world. Going by the same trend, the count will cross 8 million deaths annually by 2030.
For those who find it really difficult to quit smoking can adopt e-cigarette as an alternative to conventional smoking. Starting with nicotine e-hookahs, they can later on switch to the one without nicotine.
Here are some of the benefits of e-cigarettes over conventional cigarettes:
Doesn't produce that distinctive odor
How many times have somebody made a face when you entered the room after smoking? Cigarette produces that distinctive smell due to the burning of tar and chemicals along with the tobacco.
You can prevent this smell with e-cigarettes. The e-liquid that vaporizes in e-cigarettes doesn't make your breath smell awful and you can avoid the humiliation caused due to bad breath.
Less harmful than conventional cigarettes
E-cigarettes are comparatively less harmful than regular cigarettes as it doesn't contain tobacco, tar and other harmful chemicals that are considered to be cancer causing. According to some healthcare professionals, e-cigarettes also help many smoking-addicts cope up with withdrawal symptoms.
Though we can't say with complete assurance that e-cigarettes, ehookah or other electronic smoking devices are healthy, we are convinced about one thing; e-cigarette does not contain tobacco so they are less harmful than conventional smoking due to which they make a great alternative to smoking.