Do you have friends or family members who constantly nag you about your electronic cigarette use? Or maybe you’re like us and have read countless articles that ignorantly bash e-cigs with either no solid support to their arguments or blatant misinterpretation of research.
Whatever the case may be, we all have to understand that this is a relatively new market for devices that mimic the actions produced by a product that is known to cause cancer and a plethora of respiratory illnesses. There is bound to be some initial backlash while we wait for the government to take a side. And even they are prone to jumping the gun with statements like “Electronic cigarettes lead to smoking.”
That said, here are some rebuttals to that and 19 more commonly heard anti-ecig arguments; 15 from the anti-smoking crowd as well as five from reluctant smokers.
From the Anti-Smoking Crowd
#1. Electronic Cigarettes Are a Public Health Hazard
This is the main selling point on most government proposed bills that would regulate the usage of e-cigs and classify them as tobacco products. Some studies have found there to be trace amounts of nitrosamines in electronic cigarette cartridges. The levels found were comparable to that of a nicotine patch and 14,000 times lower than in a tobacco cigarette. No studies have yet to find any toxic nitrosamines in the vapour produced by an e-cig. In all reality it is nearly impossible to avoid nitrosamines as they are produced during the consumption of many vegetables. In terms of second-hand vaping, a Clearstream-AIR study found that e-cigarettes do not produce detectable amounts of toxic substances in the air of an enclosed space and that it would be more harmful to breath air in a large city than in a room with someone who is vaping.
Dr. Michael Siegel - Boston University School of Public Health - The Rest of the Story:
Actually, the evidence suggests that electronic cigarettes have had a profound positive impact on the public’s health. Analyses of cigarette sales has suggested that because of smokers switching to electronic cigarettes, the sale of tobacco cigarettes is substantially down. This translates into an improvement in the public’s health: fewer deaths and diseases. That’s hardly a “public health hazard.”
Gregory Conley, Legislative Director - Consumer Advocates for Smoke-Free Alternatives Association (CASAA):
The argument for not banning the use of electronic cigarettes is that there’s no evidence that it is a hazard to others. Indeed, there’s a volume of evidence showing that the levels of chemicals released in e-cigarette vapour are nontoxic under various toxicological standards.
#2. You Are Still Smoking!
Because our e-cigs produce clouds of vapour that appear similar to cigarette smoke, some bystanders won’t realize the difference and subjectively assume we are smoking. However, are people smoking when they exhale on a cold day and their breath turns to water vapour? That is essentially what happens when we are using electronic cigarettes. The only difference is that the vapour is produced from a liquid mixture and at much higher temperature and therefore appears as a smoky cloud-like substance when inhaled and exhaled at any temperature found in Earth’s atmosphere.
Dr. Murray Laugesen - New Zealand’s Most Experienced Researcher on Smoking Policy and Cigarettes – Health New Zealand:
At first glance, yes e-cigarette users inhale vapour, not smoke. With smoking, you have to light up. With vaping, you aren’t lighting anything, and there is no smell of smoke. Cigarettes burn, e-cigarettes just create vapour with each puff.
REBUTTAL: Vaping is Not the Same As Smoking
#3. You’re Inhaling Dangerous Metallic Particles
A study published in April found there to be trace particles of metals in the vapour from one brand of electronic cigarette (not Easy Puff). Yes, those metals have been known to cause respiratory complications. But while the levels found may have been equal to or higher than those found in cigarette smoke, they were far within USP standards for maximum allowable daily exposure to metals from inhalation medicines and comparable to those of FDA approved nicotine inhalers.
Dr. Konstantinos Farsalinos, Cardiology Researcher - Ecigarette Research Advocates Group:
Indeed, researchers found several particles in nanometer size, that are able to penetrate deep into the lungs. The numbers they report show that the
e-cigarettes produce 880 times less particles compared to conventional tobacco cigarettes.
#4. Electronic Cigarette Flavours Are Targeted at Minors
Many e-liquids are made to taste sweet like fruits, deserts and popular beverages. So it’s not surprising that anti-smoking activists are now claiming that e-cigs target teens or are a threat to minors. However, electronic cigarettes are not cheap. While they will save a smoker thousands of dollars in the long run, their entry cost is anywhere from $30 and $150 and require additional purchases for refills and replacement parts. A $5 pack of smokes is much more easily attainable to minors. As for the fruity flavours, well, adults enjoy those just as much as children and they simply make e-cigarettes more appealing to smokers than the tobacco variety. In reality, since there is no combustion of paper or tobacco leaf, it is very difficult for e-cigs to actually mimic the bitter taste of a cigarette.
David Dorn, Commentator on Vaping – VapourTrails.tv
For many it could be disastrous – they’ve moved away from “ciggie” flavours onto any one of dozens, in some cases, or, in many cases, they switch flavours during the day to suit their moods… This, apparently, is to get away from their taste buds becoming used to one flavour, so that every change makes it a “fresh” experience and helps them avoid going back to fags. It’s not something that bothers me, particularly, but I do know that for a very large proportion of folks, it’s a vital part of the e-cig experience. Without it, going back to cigs isn’t too much of a stretch.
Harold P. Wimmer, National President and CEO of the American Lung Association:
The American Lung Association is very concerned that e-cigarettes–with flavours like cotton candy and bubble gum–are being marketed to kids, which could result in a life long addiction to nicotine.
Paul Bergen, former researcher at the Public Health Sciences, University of Alberta – Tobacco Harm Reduction:
If you start with any of the flavourings and out of interest try a regular cigarette it will seem harsh and horrid in comparison. To take that point one step further, to remove or outlaw flavourings in e-cigarettes (or smokeless tobacco) would make migration more likely.
Phil Busardo, Reviewer and Vapour – TasteYourJuice:
Let me preface my comments by saying electronic cigarettes should be used by adults only. I am 100% behind any ban to prohibit the sale of electronic cigarette products to minors. Although it’s hard to believe, adults like flavours too. Apparently some of our taste buds survive as we grow older. If we’re going to say that flavours are targeting minors and will lead to smoking, we will need to take a good hard look at other products that are doing the SAME THING, yet go unmentioned. A prime example would be the rash of flavoured alcoholic beverages. From a popular Vodka company we have the following flavours: Mango Passion Fruit, Raspberry Pomegranate, Raspberry Lemon, Cinn-Sugar Twist, Wild Honey, Fluffed Marshmallow and Iced Cake. If the flavours in electronic cigarette liquids are targeting minors and will lead to smoking, then these flavours are clearly doing the same and will lead to alcoholism.
#5. There is Antifreeze in the Juice You Are Smoking
Most of us are well-versed with the 2009 FDA study that found trace levels (1%) of diethylene glycol, a toxic ingredient in anti-freeze, in 1 out of 18 cartridges from just two brands of electronic cigarettes. Not one study since then has found the chemical in any cartridges or liquids, suggesting that the device in question may have been contaminated. While cigarette smoke contain thousands of chemicals, we know what goes into e-cigarettes. The four ingredients used in the majority of e-liquids are propylene glycol, vegetable glycerine, GRAS flavouring and nicotine. Propylene glycol is also a component of antifreeze but only to make it less toxic if swallowed.
Kristin Noll-Marsh, Vice President of the Consumer Advocates for Smoke-free Alternatives Association (CASAA):
No testing, including that done by the FDA, has ever found anything close to a harmful amount of diethylene glycol in e-cigarette liquid. The amount found in just one cartridge was so insignificant that it would not have even been worth mentioning unless the FDA wished to scare consumers from using electronic cigarettes. The use of the word “antifreeze” was clearly meant to make it sound more scary and dangerous than it really is. I rate this lie to be A Toxic Shocker.
Azim Chowdhury, Attorney – Keller and Heckman LLC:
First, FDA itself notes that this was merely a preliminary analysis and that “due to the variability among products, this analysis should not be used to draw conclusions about what substances are or are not present in particular electronic cigarettes or brands of electronic cigarettes.” Of course, that hasn’t stopped those against e-cigs from citing this report as evidence of how dangerous e-cigs are. FDA also failed to note that the trace levels of tobacco specific nitrosamines found were merely fractions of what is found in cigarette smoke and actually on par with levels of such impurities found in FDA-approved NRT products.
#6. E-Cigs Are Just Gateways to Smoking the Real Thing
Electronic cigarettes are not intended to be used by non-smokers. They were designed and marketed as safer alternative for smokers looking for a healthier form of nicotine delivery. Furthermore, cigarette smoke tastes awful compared to the sweet vapour of e-cigs, a deterrent for anyone attempting to make a reverse switch.
Steve K Author of Steve K's Vaping World
The notion that electronic cigarettes could be some sort of “gateway” to smoking seems downright impossible to me. e-Cigarettes are so popular because they provide a superior experience to smoking itself, otherwise there wouldn’t be so many smokers that made the switch. Why would anyone intentionally go from a method of nicotine consumption with lower harm, more options and better available flavours to a product that tastes terrible, smells, is a known killer and is i increasingly shunned by society? The only way the gateway scenario can exist in reality is if prohibitionists are able to ban or sufficiently neuter e-cigarettes to the point where current vapours are forced back to smoking due to lack of a viable alternative.
Dr. Carl V. Phillips Scientific Director of CASAA and Former Professor of Public Health - Anti-THR Lies and Tobacco Harm Reduction:
Of course, the biggest lie is the “gateway” lie. You know that when prohibitionists start making claims about a gateway that they have given up on pretending that a behaviour is a problem in itself. So they have to make up some reason for prohibiting it, so they claim that it leads to something that is a problem. There is never any evidence to support those claims, about anything, as far as I have ever observed.
Azim Chowdhury, Attorney – Keller and Heckman:
Some will point to a recent CDC study which claims that e-cig usage among teenagers has doubled over the last year. But, a careful reading shows that it wasn’t regular “usage” that spiked among teens, but rather the number who had ever tried a single puff in their lives. For a novel product like e-cigs, this is not a very unexpected result. There is no real data that supports the notion that kids are getting hooked on e-cigs and then transitioning to smoking cigarettes.
#7. You Don’t Know What You’re Inhaling
We do know the ingredients used in the majority of e-cigarette juice. Furthermore, recent studies have analysed vapour content of electronic cigarettes and found volatile organic compounds at levels far below safety limits for exposure.
Katherine Devlin, President of the Electronic Cigarette Industry Trade Association (ECITA):
The components of electronic cigarettes are at least as well understood as the chemicals that are generated by smoking, or indeed traffic fumes, if not more so. Crucially, the chemicals produced by electronic cigarettes are orders of magnitude less toxic than both tobacco smoking and traffic.
Cynthia Hallett, Executive Director of the Americans for Non-smokers’ Rights:
They raise significant health concerns for us. We don’t know what is in the vapour mist, we don’t know what else is in the contents of that electronic cigarette.
#8. Those Batteries Are Ticking Time Bombs Waiting to Explode
We’ve all read the story about the Florida man who’s electronic cigarette exploded in his mouth, shattering some teeth and taking a chunk out of his tongue. What is little known is that the e-cig he was using was a homemade device involving stacked batteries. Stacking batteries is not recommended for electronic cigarette use. If you are considering creating your own mod, check out Battery University or E-Cigarette Forum to brush up on your safety skills.
Nick “GrimmGreen” Green, Vapour and Reviewer – GrimmGreen:
People need to remember that ALL batteries have the potential to be dangerous. Back in 2006 Dell laptop batteries were failing left and right. Some simple research, freely available on the internet can make all the difference. Don’t overcharge, don’t over dis-charge and don’t ask more from your batteries than they can handle. Pay that little bit extra and get some high quality batteries, cheap batteries just simply aren’t worth it.
#9. Nicotine is Poisonous and Causes Cancer
Contrary to popular belief, nicotine is not the cancer-causing agent in cigarettes. A two year study on lab mice found there to be no harmful effects of nicotine when given in its pure form by inhalation. If nicotine were the culprit in cigarettes, we’re pretty sure the FDA would never have approved any NRT gums, patches or inhalers. It is still poisonous when ingested in large quantities so make sure your e-liquids are used properly and kept out of reach of children.
Chris Price, from E-Cigarette Politics, Former ECCA UK Secretary - E-Cigarette Politics:
On this scale, the effects of nicotine are about invisible. Even when consumed in properly-made smokeless tobacco, as in Sweden, it’s virtually impossible to identify harm at population level statistically.
Azim Chowdhury, Attorney at Keller and Heckman LLP :
The FDA has determined that there are no significant safety concerns with respect to long-term/recreational nicotine use. More specifically, the Agency recently published a Notice of Findings in the Federal Register indicating that the long-term use of the nicotine-containing NRT products was safe and does not appear to have significant potential for abuse or dependence.
Dr. David Sweanor of the University of Ottawa, published an article in 2007 in the International Journal of Drug Policy called, “Tobacco harm reduction: How rational public policy could transform a pandemic,” where he noted that “nicotine, at the dosage levels smokers seek, is a relatively innocuous drug commonly delivered by a highly harmful device, cigarette smoke.” The article goes on to note that compared to tobacco smoke, nicotine itself is benign: “A fatal dose of nicotine would require roughly 60 mg for an average person, but, as with a fatal dose of caffeine, such quantity is far more than is sought or attained by consumers (Fagerstrom, 2005).”
#10. E-Cigs Still Cause Second-hand Smoking
As already stated, electronic cigarettes do not produce detectable amounts of toxins into the air. Furthermore, they do not emit second-hand nicotine as the amount of it in the vapour they deliver to the user is far less than in conventional tobacco smoke. Any amount exhaled would be so minute that it would not have an effect on bystanders, as the vapour dissipates within seconds as opposed to minutes for smoke.
Dr. Igor Burstyn, Professor at Drexel University of Public Health:
Even when compared to workplace standards for involuntary exposures, and using several conservative assumptions, the exposures from using e-cigarettes fall well below the threshold for concern for compounds with known toxicity. That is, even ignoring the benefits of e-cigarette use and the fact that the exposure is actively chosen, and even comparing to the levels that are considered unacceptable to people who are not benefiting from the exposure and do not want it, the exposures would not generate concern or call for remedial action.
#11. You’re Just Substituting One Addiction For Another
We won’t deny the fact that nicotine is a highly addictive chemical. When a smoker switches to electronic cigarettes, they are still most likely consuming it to an extent. However, most of us gradually reduce our intake by using cartridges or e-liquids with lower concentrations of the drug and eventually become nicotine free. A recently published PLOS One study found that 73 percent of participants who stopped smoking using e-cigs also quit vaping by the end of the 52 week trial period. Some of us have quit vaping and smoking altogether while those who continue to vape have turned into a hobby. And hey, some smokers simply don’t want to quit nicotine; they just want to “smoke” in a way that drastically reduces the harm done to their bodies. Electronic cigarettes provide a means for adult cigarette smokers to transition to a less harmful form of recreational nicotine delivery.
Scott Ballin, Tobacco and Public Health Expert – Tobacco at a Crossroads:
It isn’t the nicotine that causes the harm, but rather how the nicotine is delivered. Smoking is the biggest killer by far. Almost all non-combustible products including smokeless tobacco products and e-cigarettes are 90-percent-plus lower in risk. Nicotine is like caffeine in some ways. If we were to smoke the coffee bean, we’d have thousands of chemicals produced in the smoke. But the risks disappear when used in a non-combustible form. Tobacco, as a plant, could be made into a tea that would allow people to get their nicotine without the risks. E-cigarettes, lozenges, etc., are all non-combustible products that are significantly lower in risk.
Kevin Burke, Editor – Ecig Advanced:
Vapours always hear this kind of thing and in a way it suggests we should feel bad for using nicotine in any form. The reality is that while many people do completely stop using nicotine with e-cigarettes, some don’t. This isn’t because they’re just an ‘addict’, feverishly searching for their next fix, it’s because they truly enjoy it. Much in the same way a coffee lover enjoys that first cup or a foodie searches out specific cuisine, sometimes the things we love come with health risks. Fortunately, the nicotine in e-cigarettes is not what made our former habit so risky and truthfully, deadly. So we have a bunch of people who used to love smoking enough to let it kill them. Now, they’ve found something they love even more that is far less harmful in vaping. If that sounds like someone just trading off addictions, then you’re not paying attention.
#12. Going Cold Turkey is the Most Effective Way to Quit
Just because you quit cold turkey doesn’t mean anyone can do it. It also doesn’t mean you aren’t susceptible to a relapse. Different smokers have different levels of addiction and most who want to quit have tried going cold turkey or reducing the amount of cigarettes they smoke. Statistically speaking, only 3.5% of smokers who try going cold turkey end up actually quitting. Because e-cigarettes are so new to the market, we don’t have any reliable quit rates for them yet. We can still estimate their quit smoking rate to be somewhere around 30-50% based on small preliminary surveys.
#13. E-Cigarettes Contain Dangerous Nitrosamines
When it comes to anti-smoking groups criticizing e-cigs for containing nitrosamines, it could be the same cynical mechanism operating, or they could genuinely misunderstand the risks. Perhaps nobody has ever told them that the quantities are nearly undetectable, or perhaps people have and they were just too dim to understand the obvious lack of risk. Either way, if somebody still insists that the nitrosamines in e-cigarettes are something to worry about after becoming aware of the facts in this article, they are either idiots or people who just plain hate anything that looks like smoking. There is no question that, when compared to the thousands of chemicals in cigarette smoke, the e-cigarette is the far less harmful option for smokers.
James Dunworth, E-Cig Advocate and Co-Founder of E Cigarette Direct - Ashtray Blog:
This really is a non-issue. The FDA only found nitrosamines in eliquid at a maximum level of 8.2 billionth of a gram, which is at the same level as those found in FDA approved nicotine inhalers, and 14,000 times lower than those found in Marlborough cigarettes. Even then, these nitrosamines were only found in eliquid, not in the vapour. When an independent lab Analyze looked at the vapour of the electronic cigarette, they only found one, non-carcogenic nitrosamine. More importantly, the FDA tests failed to find ANY of the other 56 tobacco smoker carcinogens in the eliquid. For more information on nitrosamines, see this post.
#14. E-Cigs Can Cause Lung Damage
A study published last September found that use of an electronic cigarette for 10 minutes increased airway resistance in smokers without COPD or asthma. However, a temporary increase in airway resistance does not equate to lung damage nor does it cause a reduction in blood-oxygen levels. Things like humidity, cold air and exercise can also cause elevated airway obstruction yet aren’t known to actually damage lungs.
Dr. Gilbert Ross, Medical and Executive Director - American Council on Science and Health (ACSH):
The components of e-cigarette vapour, of any significance, are water vapour with nicotine (usually), glycerine/vegetable flavouring, and propylene glycol (GRAS as per the FDA). A recent study by Prof. Igor Burstyn of Drexel Univ. School of Public Health showed the incredibly remote chance of e-cig vapour contributing to long- term health effects. See the study here …..and read the discussion from CASAA, a harm reduction advocacy group, here as well.
I’m not sure what else I can add. None of the above-mentioned vapour components have been shown to cause harm in experimental or epidemiological studies. Nicotine particularly has never been found to cause any long-term health effects; it does NOT cause cancer, COPD or asthma.
REBUTTAL: E-Cigs Not Found to Cause Lung Damage
#15. E-Cigs Aren’t FDA Approved and Therefore Aren’t Safe
The FDA has yet to approve electronic cigarettes because they “have not been fully studied.” Our evidence would suggest otherwise. Nothing is 100% safe but e-cigs are exponentially safer than tobacco cigarettes and have the potential to save millions of lives.
John Manzione, Editor - SpinFuel Magazine:
Electronic cigarettes have proven, time and time again, that there IS an effective tool to drive down the numbers of early deaths, heart disease, lung cancer, and other maladies caused by the direct use of tobacco. Everyone, and I mean everyone, should be encouraging the use of ‘e-cigarettes’ for smokers, the anti-smoking crowd most of all. There has been more than enough scientific studies that show e-cigarettes are safer than traditional cigarettes. At this junction in time, why isn’t that enough?
Lou Ritter, President of the American E-Liquid Manufacturing Standards Association (AEMSA):
While “There are no regulations or verifications” (or other to that effect), There IS Self-Regulation and AEMSA is doing it well. We now have 19 announced General (manufacturing) Members representing approximately 25 labs (hard to keep count as they keep opening new ones). Not all are yet inspected and Certified as several are recent additions. AEMSA Standards are the only Standards in the industry. They represent one delineation of cGMPs and we have highly credentialed Subject Matter Experts (SMEs) contributing to the ongoing process of monitoring and refining – all science based. Our SMEs include: Kurt Kistler Ph.D. Chemistry Professor, long time vapour and safety advocate (former “Expert” from ECF’s former “Ask the Experts” sub-forum (now titled “Ask the veterans”, Dr. Konstantinos Farsalinos – Cardiologist and Researcher (AEMSA Welcomes Newest Subject Matter Expert (SME) Member: Dr. Konstantinos Farsalinos), and Matt Melvin Ph.D: AEMSA and ENTHALPY ANALYTICAL now working together (AEMSA offers easy and affordable access to Certified testing services to members).
Our Standards demand the highest (verifiable per batch) quality nicotine and diluents with very specific limitations for purity and, more importantly, impurities. Accuracy of content is also monitored and verified at both working levels (for measuring adjustments) and final product. Mixing lab requirements are also extensive as are packaging and labelling (with traceable batch numbers), childproof caps and tamper evidence and more. AEMSA Standards also require a level of transparency. We are preparing a post delineating our first year progress (launched Oct. 8, 2012) and it is impressive. We have been before the FDA three times (twice in private “Listening Sessions”), invited to present before the Tobacco Merchants Association (TMA) Annual Conference and meeting where CTP/FDA Director Mitch Zeller was the keynote speaker: AEMSA Presents on Self-Regulation at TMA Conference 2013 Presentation. And we have more speaking engagements (all invitations) already on the calendar. As a registered 501(c)(6), we have stringent operating rules, etc. within which we must function. As we are approaching year 2, we have Board elections and more on the immediate horizon. And, if all the above is not enough, we may be the first and only Professional Trade Association founded, formation facilitated and led by Consumer Volunteers. The association still has zero payroll (but we are growing at such a rate that this may have to change).
REBUTTAL: Unapproved Does Not Equal Unsafe
From Current Smokers:
#16. Those Things Don’t Even Work
Some smokers may have once tried an e-cig they picked up at their local gas station or convenience store and were disappointed in its performance. Not all electronic cigarettes are created equal, however, and some of the more mass produced variety may not be suitable to heavy smokers. Make sure you let them know they can purchase cartridges or liquid in stronger nicotine concentrations and in a plethora of flavours to satisfy their palate. If you live close to a brick & mortar vapour shop, bring them along on your next visit or point them to online forums to find a quality starter kit.
Prof. Riccardo Polosa Full Professor of Internal Medicine of the University of Catania – Italy:
In ECLAT 14% of regular users of e-cigs containing nicotine abstained from smoking conventional cigarettes and a further 23% reduced their use substantially (more than 50% from baseline). Data speaks for itself and as the philosopher Pascal said: “there is enough light for those who desire to see”. Therefore, this product has the potential of helping many smokers quit. If we consider that by inclusion criteria smokers were not interested in quitting, that the model under investigation was underperforming, and that participants did not receive any form of smoking cessation counselling, the above success rates are impressive. Thus for (some) smokers, satisfaction from e-cigarette use was good enough to compensate for their need of own brand cigarette. Indeed the replacement of the ritual of smoking gestures and cigarette handling, the opportunity to use the product in public places and to reduce bad smell, as well as the perception of an improved general sense of wellbeing might have been the cause for the substantial success rates.
In ECLAT, only 26.9% of those who switched to e-cigs resulting in complete smoking abstinence were still using the product by the end of the observational period ( week-52). Thus, 73.1% of regular e-cig users ended up quitting vaping as well. Probably, the fact that participants were not supplied with the product beyond the 12- week intervention phase of the study and that its commercial availability during the extension phase was poor has produced an unexpected effect. Many regular vapours confronted with the situation of not being supplied with (or able to acquire) the product, rather than relapsing in tobacco smoking realized to be strong enough to free themselves also from the behavioural component of smoking that was being reproduced by vaping the product under investigation, that in this regard was not very “addictive” and in fact was instrumental to beating participants smoking addiction/behaviour. It seems as if the E-cig could have stimulated a subconscious progression through the stages of change (from pre-contemplation to contemplation to determination to action i.e. quitting).
Gregory Conley Legislative Director – Consumer Advocates for Smoke-Free Alternatives Association (CASAA):
I was thankfully never a heavy smoker — perhaps not even heavy enough to be truly addicted — but the urge to smoke was still so strong that I rarely if ever went more than 24 hours without one (or ten). I initially failed to quit with e-cigarettes in 2008 because I could barely feel the vapour when I inhaled. A year or two later, having read that the technology had progressed, I gave it another try and I’ve yet to look back. Undoubtedly the largest contributing factors were the mimicking of the hand-to-mouth motion, the ability to feel the vapour in my throat, and the availability of flavours, but I can’t understate the importance of the positive comments that I would (and still do) receive from non-smokers.
#17. E-Cigs Are Too Bulky
Electronic cigarettes are manufactured in a variety of shapes and sizes. Larger personal vaporisers are becoming more commonplace and smokers might find their size a bit odd. However, a pack of cigarettes is pretty bulky in itself and no doubt stands out in a pants or shirt pocket. If size is an issue, there are plenty of quality electronic cigarettes that aren’t much bigger than the real thing and don’t require a cardboard box to be protected from the elements of one’s pocket or handbag.
#18. They Are Just a Fad
Because the popularity of electronic cigarettes has grown faster than the fall of oxygen bars into obscurity, their concept may seem like fad to many smokers. However, e-cigs have been in the marketplace since 2007 and sales have grown every year with no signs of slowing down. Tobacco giants like Reynolds and Lorillard have even jumped at the opportunity to get their share of the pie. The fact that millions of smokers have improved their health by switching from conventional cigarettes shows that e-cigs do work and aren’t a marketing gimmick.
Oliver Kershaw (Smokey Joe), Founder of ECF - E-Cigarette Forum:
When I started ECF in December 2007 it was because I’d bought an e-cigarette from China and thought it was pretty rubbish. Of course, that’s not the whole story: what I really thought was “this is a pretty interesting product, but it’s poorly engineered. Once that’s sorted, we’ll have something amazing on our hands”. ECF has since become something of a test board for engineers, enthusiasts, DIYers and entrepreneurs to try their ideas out with a receptive community who give near instant feedback. In this way, I think ECF (and, other communities) have been really important in the further improvement of the products. And what improvements we’ve seen! Starting with the Screw driver, and the more commercially made Ego type devices, we’ve seen more or less constant developments for the last 4 years. And, more importantly, the number of users has grown and grown, and won’t stop any time soon. Some analysts suggest there will be more than $1bn in e-cig sales this year, and possibly double next year. I think that if another, revolutionary step in the development story happens, we could see 4 or 5 times the number of users within a year. Does any of this sound like a fad? No, of course not. It might have seen faddish three or four years ago, but thanks to the entrepreneurs and early adopters it’s anything but.
REBUTTAL: E-Cigs Are Here to Stay
#19. That Looks Like Too Much of a Hassle to Deal With
To an inexperienced vapour, some of the more advanced personal vaporizers may seem like chore to maintain.
Don Meredith (Dip OHS) - Founder/CEO Easy Puff Australia
There’s an e-cigarette for every type of "smoker". Some are sophisticated devices that allow the user to mix and match e-juices and nicotine, while some (like our Easy Puff) are just a simple two-piece device with a rechargeable battery at one end and a replaceable pre-filled cartridge at the other end that simply screws together in seconds. "Being pre-filled there is no mess filling cartridges and our stringent quality controls ensures a consistency of nicotine and flavour levels".
#20. I’m Going to Get Cancer Either Way
Again, nicotine is not the cancer causing agent in cigarettes.....and even if it was, e-cigarettes would still be healthier than smoking as they eliminate nearly all of the carcinogenic chemicals that cause respiratory issues.
Dr Derek Yach - Former World Health Organisation (WHO) Cabinet Director
Whilst some research has found trace amounts of nitrosamines in e-cig vapor, which in cases of high exposure are known to cause cancer, the levels found were extremely low and unlikely to lead to cancer. To give you an idea, e-cigarette vapour contains nearly the exact same level of nitrosamines as widely-available (and approved) nicotine patches and approximately 1300 times less nitrosamines than a tobacco cigarette. In October the World Health Organisation will meet to discuss the possibility of including e-cigarettes into the framework convention on tobacco control which would force member countries to adopt drastic measures including high taxes, an advertising ban and restrictions of use in public places. These measures will essentially stifle the growth of e-cigarettes without any hard evidence of them posing a health risk and as a result the opportunity to potentially save tens of millions of lives will be lost.
Dr Yach (pictured left with US President Bill Clinton), played a lead role in the development of the framework convention of tobacco control during his tenure was one of the 53 leading scientists and public health advocates who recently wrote to the World Health Organisation (WHO) urging them to resist taking such drastic measures against e-cigarettes. Derek Yach was the Executive Director for Noncommunicable Diseases and Mental Health of the World Health Organization (WHO).
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