safer than smoking? Yes. Experts think that e-cigarettes are, based on what we know so far, much safer than cigarettes. Smoking is associated with a number of very serious health risks to both the smoker and to others around them. So switching from tobacco to e-cigarettes substantially reduces a major health risk.
Do e-cigarettes produce harmful chemicals or blow up? Some studies have found chemicals in e-cigarette vapour that are known to cause health problems. But these studies have tended to use artificial conditions, and when good quality e-cigarettes are used normally (e.g. not overheated), there are far fewer harmful chemicals present in the vapour than in tobacco smoke. If the e-liquid
is being overheated it tends to produce an acrid, unpleasant taste - you'll know if this happens.
As with any rechargeable device, such as mobile phones and laptops, it's important to charge e-cigarettes with the right charger, and don't leave it unattended while charging. Ensure that you buy from reputable suppliers and avoid generic charging equipment. There have been reported cases of e-cigarettes causing fires, but far fewer than the number caused by cigarettes, which are the most common cause of lethal house fires.
How should I use my e-cigarette to help me to stop smoking? Using an e-cigarette is different from smoking a cigarette. It usually involves taking slower and longer puffs over a longer period of time. This is because e-cigarettes heat a coil
in a liquid (think of a kettle). You may find you need to take a few puffs on an e-cigarette at times when you wouldn't have smoked, but this is nothing to worry about, and the way you use your e-cigarette will develop over time. It's not like a cigarette, which you smoke from start to finish. With an e-cigarette you can use it once or twice, and then put it away. If you find you've got it in your mouth all the time, you might need to use a stronger e-liquid.
If you get a bit of a cough when you use your e-cigarette, this isn't unusual and it might help to switch from an e-liquid with a high proportion of propylene glycol to one with more vegetable glycol, which can be more soothing.
Will e-cigarettes be cheaper for me than smoking? Yes, and you'll notice savings very quickly compared with buying cigarettes. A starter kit
for the tank-style devices can range from $20-70. You'll then only need to replace the atomizer (heating coil or "head") occasionally for a couple of pounds and, more regularly, buy your E-juice, which can start at $3.00 for 10 ml. How often you need to change the atomizer
will depend on how you use the device, but typically it'll be around every two weeks or when you get a “burnt” taste or low vapour production.
Is second-hand vapour from e-cigarettes dangerous? How can I protect my children? Unlike second-hand smoke from cigarettes - which is known to cause cancer - there's no evidence that second-hand E-cigarette vapour is dangerous to others. Some studies have found traces of toxic chemicals in second-hand vapour, but at such low levels that they're not harmful to those around you. E-cigarettes aren't recommended for use by non-smokers and children.
In order to prevent accidental poisoning, for example by young children drinking e-liquids, you should store your e-cigarettes and liquids away safely, just as you would with household cleaning products and medicines.