E-Cig Review: A Less Harmful Alternative?

Over the past few months, many studies have popped up regarding electronic cigarettes. Some have been positive and others negative, but both sides of the argument are trying to find a footing for where we currently stand with the devices.

The most recent study or ‘review’ concluded that e-cigs are less harmful than traditional cigarettes for both users and bystanders. According to the Daily Mail, despite the fact that information surrounding the long-term health effects of the devices is still fairly limited, the evidence we currently have fails to justify enforcing stricter regulations in comparison to tobacco laws.

The review was successfully conducted by researchers at Queen Mary University of London. The team commented saying that “health workers should support smokers who want to reduce their use of tobacco by switching to electronic cigarettes.”

On top of this, Professor Peter Hajek, who works for the UK Centre for Tobacco and Alcohol Studies at QMUL, mentioned “the evidence we currently have is clear: e-cigarettes should be allowed to compete against conventional cigarettes in the marketplace.”

“Health care professionals may advise smokers who are unwilling to cease nicotine use to switch to e-cigarettes.”

At the moment, it is estimated that roughly 1.3 million Britons use electronic cigarettes. However, many countries have already taken the step to strictly regulate and, in some places, ban the devices altogether. Examples include Norway and Singapore, both of whom have taken action against e-cigs by banning them.

In the UK, it was decided that these devices should be regulated as medicines in order to ensure the products are “safer and more effective”. This move is predicted to happen in 2016.

The devices themselves are commonly cited as being healthier than using tobacco cigarettes but a lot of experts have gone against this. They are reportedly concerned that e liquid may contain harmful chemicals.

Back to the review, researchers looked into as many as 81 studies of electronic cigarettes that presented data which could influence the decision to regulate the devices sooner.

The report stated: “based on the data available regarding the toxicant content of EC liquid and aerosols, long-term use of EC, compared to smoking, is likely to be much less, if at all, harmful to users or bystanders.”

The report also discovered that there is no solid evidence to suggest that these devices may actually be acting as a “gateway” to conventional cigarettes in the younger generation.

“In fact, there has been a drop in children becoming smokers at the same time that e-cigarette sales have grown” the report said.

However, despite this good news for vapers everywhere, the Daily Mail states that doctors still want the devices to receive strict regulations, according to a poll conducted by Doctors.net.uk.

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