When hundreds of thousands of people are already dying from smoking cigarettes, they made a solution: electronic cigarettes.
A Chinese named Hon Lik invented this device in 2003. It is made to help smokers quit from the addiction since he, himself is a smoker, as well as his late father who died from lung cancer because of too much smoking. Ever since the debate of whether electronic cigarettes are good for your health or not has been going around. Is it though (1)?
This article examines the effects of electronic cigarettes on our health for us to know if this device is good or not at all.
What is an Electronic Cigarette?
An electronic cigarette is a device that is made to imitate a cigarette. It uses power from a battery to vaporize a juice, imitating the smoke from regular cigarettes. These juices come in different flavors such as MAXX Menthol, Peppermint, coffee, Candy Crush, and many more. The juice also contains nicotine, which is a stimulant and is a major chemical ingredient in cigarettes. We will talk about this more later in the article.
As time went by, these devices have had a lot of different names like e-cig, e-cigarette, vape, vape pen, and ENDS (electronic nicotine delivery system). Its design started as an imitation of actual cigarettes and later on came out on different forms like a computer mouse, USB flash drive, car key, and anything you could think of (2).
Effects of Electronic Cigarettes in the Body
The primary reason as to why people got addicted to smoking is due to a stimulant chemical called nicotine. It is an addictive chemical that makes people feel happy as it can stimulate the hypothalamus to release dopamine—a hormone in our body responsible for making us have that feeling. This may sound fun at first, but the continuous use of this stimulant can leave permanent damage to your brain. You can now buy e-cigarette starter kits easily online and it attracting the young people. It is not advised for the young to have electronic cigarettes for one reason that the brain is still undergoing development until we reach 25 years old (3).
In addition to nicotine, there are also other components to these electronic cigarettes that could be harmful to your health. Scientists have found that these juices did not just contain nicotine, but also diacetyl, carcinogens, heavy metals such as nickel, lead, and tin, and other volatile organic compounds. These substances can damage your lungs (4).
Second-hand smoke has been an issue with smoking regular cigarettes, and it does not end there—electronic cigarettes continues what was started. Since e-cigs produce an aerosol, a combination of liquid and gas particles, anyone that can inhale it will also take in the chemicals from the juice. Some people just casually use vape in public places with a lot of people thinking that the aerosol from the e-cig will not harm them.
So to answer the question of whether it is good for health or not, the answer is no. Scientists are still puzzled by how these electronic devices can affect the human body. But so far, what has been found out is enough to tell that it is not a healthy choice. Does it help a smoker quit smoking? Well in some cases, the answer is yes. But does it keep away your body from the harmful effects of cigarettes? The answer is no. If you have not yet tried smoking or vaping, better not try. One try leads to another and many more to come. If you have self-control, anything is good but in moderation.