The What, How and Why of E- Cigarettes

So what exactly is an e cigarette? They are basically smoking devices that are used as alternatives for the traditional tobacco cigarettes. What they do is that they stimulate the sensation of smoking and do not expose their users or others around them to the harmful agents that cause cancer as well as all of the other chemicals that are usually associated with the conventional tobacco products. In other words they are delivery devices of nicotine that are intended to serve the purpose of cigarettes.

So what happens to the person who stops traditional smoking and outs the risk of inhaling tar aside but at the same time starts inhaling only nicotine by taking up an e cigarette? There still isn’t any answer to this yet so it can be said that the potential of harm is present nonetheless.

Though an e cigarette does not make any real smoke but it still has managed to ignite a firestorm of controversy. It has been implied and even blatantly said by their makers that these electronic devices are far safer than their traditional counterparts.  However until and unless e cigarettes are proven to be safe, the FDA will keep refusing to let these devices enter the country and is expected to soon ban their sale as well. The action believed by many observers to be imminent, if the FDA does indeed bans the entry of e cigarettes; they won’t be the first ever health agency to take the action as Canada’s health agency has already banned the sale as well as the importation of e cigarettes and related products.

Just like gun powder, the e cigarette too is an invention of the Chinese. The Ruyan Company was the first to make them in the year 2004. And according to their reports, Ruyan is said to have sold about hundreds and thousands of these in the year 2008 and it is not the only company manufacturing these units. The devices come in all kinds of shapes and sizes. Most have the same appearance as conventional cigarettes while others have the appearance of cigars or pipes. However, all of them work the same way:

Firstly, the user inhales through the mouthpiece of the device and the air flow triggers the turning on of a small heater that is battery powered by a sensor. That heater starts vaporizing the liquid nicotine that is present in a small cartridge though users also have the option of going for cartridges that do not contain nicotine. Secondly, the user gets to puff out some hot gas that looks and feels a lot like the actual smoke from a cigarette. And when they exhale, that PEG vapor gives the appearance of smoke though it dissipates quite quickly. There are absolutely no tobacco products in e cigarettes as the nicotine is even synthetic. They are available in the market for a hundred to two hundred dollars. The price of the refill cartridges vary according to the amount of nicotine that they contain.





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