Healthier Smoking with Vaporizers and E-cigarettes
For anyone who wants to get away from tobacco, vaporizers and e-cigarettes offer an undeniably attractive alternative. And it’s not just the obvious cool factor that makes electronic cigarettes appealing. For many, vaping has become a way to kick the habit of smoking combustible cigarettes and, in the process, adopt a healthier lifestyle, what’s more these products are easy to buy from online vape shops making them easily accessible to almost everyone.
Is Vaping Safer Than Smoking Combustible Cigarettes?
What the Science Says
Vaporizers and e-cigs have only entered mainstream use during the past few years, so it’s too early for scientists to gather any evidence about the long-term use of e-cigarettes.
Early research is promising, though, when it comes to the health benefits of using vaporizers over smoking combustibles. While it takes years for longitudinal studies to be completed, we already have years’ worth of anecdotal evidence, not to mention just plain common sense. And it all indicates that vaping is far healthier than smoking combustible cigarettes.
In fact, some professionals do actually recommend vaporizers as tools for smoking cessation. Since smoking is still the leading preventable cause of death and sickness in the U.S., e-cigs already play an important role in public health.
Vaporizers and E-Cigarettes as Quit-Smoking Aids
The Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health cites one man’s story about taking up vaping in order to quit smoking. It definitely supports the notion that e-cigarettes can help people quit smoking. A 30-year veteran of smoking, Ted Read was able to quit and only smokes a cigarette once in a great while these days. His secret? Vaping.
Part of Ted’s strategy involved tweaking his solution to wean himself off the nicotine. He went from a 24 mg to a 6 mg solution of nicotine per milliliter of PG. His goal is to get down to 3 mg, and he’s now enjoying an almost smoke-free life.
“My teeth are whiter and I don’t always smell like smoke.”
-Ted Read, 30-year smoker after taking up e-cigarettes
Mr. Read is not alone. The New England Journal of Medicine states that in the United Kingdom, about 850,000 people have switched permanently from smoking cigarettes to vaping. In addition, another 650,000 people who smoked and vaped have now stopped both.
The Other Health Benefits We Know About
There are more health benefits than just smoking cessation.
Next time you’re out and about, take note of the vapers you encounter. You’ll probably notice a wonderful lack of second-hand smoke around their heads, which goes a long way towards explaining the widespread acceptance of public vaping. The steam from vaporizers simply doesn’t bother people, if they notice it at all.
That speaks to one of the main reasons that e-cigarettes are deemed healthier: there’s no combustion taking place. Lighting a cigarette means you’re burning something, of course, and when you burn you get smoke. Carcinogens are naturally found in smoke, whether it’s produced by a lit cigarette or your wood stove. Smoke contains tar, which is known to coat smokers’ lungs and cause breathing problems.
“E-cigarettes seem relatively safe—at least safer than smoking regular cigarettes. They are a lot safer than smoking tobacco because there is no tobacco in these devices, only nicotine.”
–Michael Siegel, MD, Boston University School of Public Health
Here are a few more known facts about e-cigarettes:
- Vaporizers contain no tobacco.
- They are less addictive because they can deliver less nicotine than combustible cigarettes.
- E-cigs are safer because they don’t contain the hundreds of chemicals (many of them toxic) found in tobacco.
- E-cigs are safer because if they do happen to contain chemicals, those chemicals are present in much lower concentrations than in regular cigarettes.
You may have chosen vaping because you want to quit smoking, or you may want that hit of nicotine. Some people prefer the taste of e-juice without any nicotine at all, while others simply enjoy the vapor cloud that’s produced from vaping, or maybe you just want to smoke in public without bothering people with second-hand smoke. Whatever your reasons, many experts, including those from the public health community, support the notion that e-cigs and vaporizers are indeed the healthier option.