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Are electronic cigarettes a better alternative?

Discussion in 'Tobacco / Nicotine' started by stagsonline, Oct 4, 2014.

  1. stagsonline

    stagsonline Active Contributor

    Three years ago, I told myself that I would quite smoking for good. My plan was to slowly move away from traditional cigarettes to the much hyped e-cigs. I spent a lot of time online trying to get the best e-cig kit available, ready to start a new journey. So I started with lower nicotine hoping to gradually end up enjoying my vaping at zero nicotine level. This was not to be.

    Over the last two years, I have been going for the highest level of nicotine in my e-liquid. This has made me more addictive to nicotine than never before. I have even considered getting back to traditional cigarettes before but chest problems that have been bothering me ever since I quit make me quickly abandon the thought. Are e-cigarettes a reliable alternative? I need a lasting solution to my problem please.
  2. JaneHansen

    JaneHansen Member

    Depends on whаt уou mеаn bу "bеttеr", аnd whаt уou mеаn bу electronic cigаrеtte.

    The FDA report thаt Oddthіnkіng lіnks to аddresses thе question of whethеr e-cigаrrettes аrе uѕеful аѕ аn аid to kickіng nicotіne, аnd I thіnk thаt thе fаir аnswеr to thаt іѕ рrobаblу not: e-cig mаrketіng doеѕn't ѕееm to focus on ceаѕіng to іnhаle nicotіne іnto уour lungs, іt focuѕеs on ceаѕіng to іnhаle smoke іnto уour lungs. These аrе products mаrketed towаrdѕ аddicts, аnd thе mаnufаcturers hаvе еvеrу reаѕon to wаnt thеir customers to remаіn аddicts.

    But whаt thе FDA report doеѕ not аddress аt аll іѕ а compаrіѕon bеtwееn thе long term heаlth effects of smokіng vs. vаpіng, for thе vеrу simple reаѕon thаt thеre іѕn't аny dаtа on thаt. So іf bу "bеttеr" уou mеаn "hаѕ fewеr long term heаlth effects" thе аnswеr іѕ "іnsufficient dаtа."

    If уou mеаn bеttеr for уour heаlth іn thе short term thаn thе аnswеr ѕееms to bе yes, аlthough thе mediа clаims thаt studies dіffer. In thе аrticle lіnked, wе ѕее references to two studies, one of whісh found thаt lung irrіtаtion occurs аnd remаіns for ten mіnutes аfter fіvе mіnutes of e-cig uѕе. Thаt study dіd not compаrе аir flow impedаnce from cigаrеttes wіth e-cigs, though, ѕo from thе poіnt of view of "bеttеr" іt contаіns no іnformаtion аt аll. In а study thаt compаrеd thе effects of smokіng conventionаl versus electricаlly heаted tobаcco (not e-cigs), smokіng hаd morе аdverse effects on lung cаpаcіty. The study on e-cigs sаw іndicаtions of lung irrіtаtion, but not decreаѕed lung cаpаcіty. They аlѕo dіdn't аnаlyze thе іngredients of thе e-cigs thеy studied or compаrе morе thаn one type. They do mention thаt thе e-cigs thеy uѕеd contаіned propylene glycol, а known lung irrіtаnt, whісh thеy mention mаy hаvе bеen responsible for thе lung irrіtаtion. So іn terms of pulmonаry function thе іndicаtion іѕ thаt short term, e-cigs аrе not hаrmlеѕѕ but аrе "bеttеr". The second study compаrеd cаrdiаc effects of cigs аnd e-cigs, аnd found thаt e-cigs аrе defіnіtely "bеttеr" іn regаrds to cаrdiаc heаlth.

    Anothеr key poіnt іѕ thаt not аll e-cigs аrе equаl. Some e-cigs аrе ѕold wіth seаled cаrtridges, othеrs аrе refillаble. A consumer usіng а refillаble cаrtridge hаѕ morе control ovеr whаt goеѕ іn thе e-cig, аnd cаn opt not to uѕе propylene glycol, аnd substіtute vegetаble glycerіn, ethyl аlcohol, or еvеn wаter. No studies hаvе bеen done to compаrе thе short term effects of vаrious іngredients іn аn e-cig, though.

    But thе PG іѕ whаt gіvеѕ аn e-cig "throаt hіt", thаt іѕ, thе subjective experience of vаpіng іѕ dіfferent wіthout PG thаn іt іѕ wіth іt, ѕo іf "bеttеr" іncludes thе vіѕcerаl pleаѕure of feelіng lіkе уou аrе smokіng, thіѕ mаy bе lеѕѕ sаtіѕfyіng аnd thеrefore not bеttеr.
  3. My boyfriend tried to quit smoking cigarettes and used an e-cig on the three occasions he tried to quit. The first two times he lasted about a week or two but then was back on "regular" cigarettes. This last time him trying the e-cig again may as well have been a joke. He is going to try the gum now and we are hoping that helps him kick the habit for good. I think the important thing to remember about e-cigs, at least in my opinion, is that they aren't much better than traditional cigarettes but are marketed as though they are. Best of luck quitting!
  4. maryannballeras

    maryannballeras Senior Contributor

    I think using e-cigarette as an alternative won't do any help. I have friend who also wanted to quit smoking and used e-cigarette for the transition, but it did not lessen his urge to smoke. In fact, he dropped the e-cigarette altogether and is now back to the traditional cigarette. It was just a waste of money.
  5. Peninha

    Peninha Community Champion

    From a superficial point of view I think they are a better, healthier alternative, but I don't know if enough studies exist to prove it as harmless as it's said, I guess only time will tell?
  6. popcorn365

    popcorn365 Member

    I tried to quit smoking with E-cigs on three different occasions and failed miserably all three times. I quit smoking last October because my husband and I were trying to get pregnant. I remained smoke free up until about a month after my daughter was born and have been smoking again for the last three months. I'm so disappointed in myself. I've tried quitting so many times through so many methods that it's a joke. I will say I had better luck going cold Turkey than any other method and I will be trying to quit again. E-cigs just increase my craving for an actual cig.
  7. ambernw

    ambernw Member

    I personally use an electronic cigarette after my cousin successfully quit smoking all together using one. She did it in the way that she didn't smoke cigarettes at all, only the e-cig, and would gradually go down in nicotine levels about every week until she was down to 0 nicotine levels. It worked for her and she doesn't even use the e-cig anymore. Now for me, this is my third time trying to quit smoking like she did with an electronic cigarette. So far it's going well, but I still crave cigarettes often. But I just started to try again so we will see.
  8. Peninha

    Peninha Community Champion

    The facts are that electronic cigarettes save us money and apparently are better to our health, I don't see how anyone can fight this. If there are long term effect these are yet to be discovered.
  9. stagsonline

    stagsonline Active Contributor

    Thank you for your reply. I honestly think that most people who opt for e-cigs for the first time have very limited knowledge about vaping. The information available generally revolves around marketing different brands rather than giving better insights on how they should be used as an alternative to smoking.

    In regards to the long term health effects of using e-cigs, there is a lot that still needs to be researched. Sometimes after vaping, I feel a bit drowsy and get this heavy feeling in my chest. This was the same feeling I had when I was smoking some years back. The vaping experience is of course not better but can be very addictive too in the long run.
  10. stagsonline

    stagsonline Active Contributor

    I personally know about a dozen friends and relatives who have tried e-cigs but ended up getting back to regular cigarettes at some point. It's really hard to quit for good especially if you have been smoking for years. Sometimes I even regret why I even started smoking in the first place.

    Peer influence was the original cause of all the troubles I have now trying to quit. Marketing has created a huge appeal among the young generation and those opting for something new, but in the end, it all boils down to whether or not it's a better alternative or just another form of addiction.
  11. stagsonline

    stagsonline Active Contributor

    You are right Peninha, more research is needed to inform users of the true benefits and possible health problems related to long-term use. I am sure there must be some. It's a question that pops up in my mind every time am vaping.
  12. stagsonline

    stagsonline Active Contributor

    That's unfortunate but don't give up. Quitting especially for the sake of your young child could be a motivation. Think of it as a challenge that needs a solution. The solution is to move away slowly from smoking by reducing the number of cigarettes you use per day and gradually over time, you will get rid of the urges. We all have the same problem of cravings with e-cigs. In the end, quitting will make you happy for both you and your child.
  13. stagsonline

    stagsonline Active Contributor

    Nothing motivates us to stop smoking or other habit than seeing a close friend or relative do it successfully. It gives us that extra push to go all the way and do it too. You are on the right path. I wish the same was for me but it's a challenge. I will keep trying the e-cig with hope that this time I will eventually stop.
  14. ambernw

    ambernw Member

    It REALLY helped when I saw my cousin do it successfully with hers, although she is the first and only so far that have achieved it fully. My grandmother also uses an e-cig but continuously smokes cigarettes in between as well. Kind of the same as I'm doing right now. I intend on doing the same as my cousin and completely quitting cigarettes all together AND getting rid of the e-cig eventually too. Good luck to you on your road to better health!
    stagsonline likes this.
  15. Peninha

    Peninha Community Champion

    As a vaper that you are, you know that it's a form of addiction, yet better than cigarettes, a way lighter drug, so I think users are better off with vaping than smoking.
    stagsonline likes this.
  16. stagsonline

    stagsonline Active Contributor

    Of course they are, the only issue is that they personally make me crave more for the real cigarettes. However, the health issues that I had before make me stop thinking of it altogether.
  17. Peninha

    Peninha Community Champion

    Mmm, never heard of that until now, I thought that those e-cigs were pretty satisfying and that helped people to quit.
  18. OhioTom76

    OhioTom76 Senior Contributor

    I've tried a couple of different brands of e-cigarettes from what was being sold at Wal-Mart and I could not ever see myself using something like these in place of cigarettes. They tasted horrible, nothing like real tobacco - more like burnt sugar and other weird chemical flavors. In fact the taste was so awful it lingered in my mouth for days afterwards. They were also much harder to draw off of, which was causing my jaw to get sore. Lastly, I didn't find them satisfying my nicotine cravings at all, they just made me more and more nauseous.
  19. Profit5500

    Profit5500 Senior Contributor

    I never used e-cigs I just found those things to be a waste of time. I do not smoke so its not like I would pay attention to the idea of getting e-cigs. I just try to not think of using cigarettes they just hurt your lungs.
  20. Profit5500

    Profit5500 Senior Contributor

    I do not use e-cigarettes and if Walmart is selling them then its not going to be good. You probably would find better quality e-cigarettes in a gas station.