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Electronic cigarettes get mixed reviews, toxins still found

Electronic cigarettes  have become a debatable topic among health specialists; companies claim they are more environmentally friendly than traditional cigarettes, yet traces of toxins have still been found.

Companies that sell electronic cigarettes market the product as a way to stamp out the bad habit of smoking. The battery-powered device, which is often shaped like a traditional cigarette, can vary in shape and size. It functions like a vaporizer, turning the device’s inside nicotine chemical solution into a vapor the user inhales. The solutions are replaceable. 20090311 Electronic cig

The devices come in various flavors and nicotine concentrates, and have been developed so that a “high” dose of solution is roughly equivalent in nicotine to that administered in a traditional cigarette, while “mid-range” and “low” correspond to “light” and “ultra-
light,” respectively.

The flavor of electronic cigarettes is intended to be much like that of a tobacco cigarette but they contain no tobacco, produce no smoke, and no combustion occurs. Air flow is detected by a sensor  activated by the heating element which vaporizes the nicotine solution stored in the mouthpiece. At this point, the vapor is inhaled.

Perry Wilson, a previous actor for the Mills Players, recently quit smoking. He said, “It’s an interesting idea. It’s a cool concept in that it allows people to get nicotine while on a plane or in travel. When I did smoke, traveling would suck because of sometimes being stuck for hours and hours
without a cigarette!”

The product is, at least for now, legal to use in closed spaces where smoking traditional cigarettes is not allowed. The electronic cigarette is smokeless and would thus not violate any “no
smoking” ordinances.

The FDA’s Division of Pharmaceutical Analysis assessed sample cartridges from two of the leading brands of electronic cigarettes in July. The FDA says on it’s website that, “In one sample, the FDA’s analysis detected diethylene glycol, a chemical used in antifreeze that is toxic to humans, and in several other samples, the FDA analysis detected carcinogens
including nitrosamines.”

The FDA, however, has done  very little testing so it doesn’t know much about the health effects, nor amounts and/or kinds of other chemicals that the various brands
of  products deliver.

Users of the device have had mixed reviews. Junior Veronica Beaty said she tried an electronic cigarette at a hookah bar. “I don’t like it. The cigarette itself is too heavy. Also, I like smoking because I am drawing in long, even breaths. There is just air in the E-Cigarettes,” she said.

Emily Buschow, a first year, said she would like to try an electronic cigarette. She has not tried one because they are too expensive. She said, “I haven’t been near anyone using one, and I don’t want to buy it.”

Buschow said the electronic cigarette’s selling point is its ability to be smoked anywhere. “It’s weird that it’s socially acceptable,” she said.