In response to this article named 9 Terribly Disturbing Things About Electronic Cigarettes posted on HuffingtonPost.com, we decided to clear up some of this mis-information being spread by the media.
1. E-cigarettes contain toxic chemicals.
This is based on the 2009 FDA report which found trace amounts of toxins in ONE sample. This report has been thoroughly rebutted.
2. Kids and teens can buy them.
Many state and local governments have enacted laws making it illegal to sell e-cigarettes to those under the legal smoking age. And although there are some unscrupulous retailers (as in any industry), the vast majority of those selling e-cigarettes DO NOT sell to minors.
3. While cigarette companies say they don’t market to kids, e-cigarettes come in flavors like cherry, strawberry, vanilla and cookies and cream milkshake.
Adults like flavors as well. And Vodka comes in strawberry flavor. And alcoholic coolers come in raspberry flavor. And there is a milk alcohol drink called a “Mud Slide”.
4. Laws regulating cigarette ads don’t yet apply to e-cigarettes.
True. Current tobacco cigarette laws do not apply to e-cigarettes; nor should they. E-Cigs are not cigarettes. They should be regulated separately and the FDA has been given the authority to do so. Regulations are expected soon.
5. And e-cigarette companies are spending a TON on advertising.
So? Good. Every company spends money on advertising. That does not make the product bad.
6. E-cigarettes can be used in many places where smoking is banned.
True. But it is not smoke. And the study the cite found that USING an e-cigarette MAY harm the lungs. This study actually tested the second hand vapor and found no apparent risk to bystanders. FYI, the study the article cited also stated “He [Michael Siegel] and adobe site two co-researchers found that two-thirds, or 67%, of the 222 smokers queried said they smoked less after using e-cigarettes for six months and nearly a third, or 31%, said they kicked the tobacco habit.”….which leads into #7.
7. People think e-cigarettes can help them quit smoking.
This article states “though there is little evidence to support either of these claims.” First, people’s thoughts is not a claim. Secondly, talk to someone who uses e-cigarettes and make up your own mind. You will find many here. Third, there is very little evidence that NRTs help people quit smoking.
8. E-cigarettes aren’t taxed like traditional tobacco products.
E-cigarettes are not traditional tobacco products. And taxation is likely on the way, although we hope it is based on actual risk rather than fear.
9. Despite unknown health consequences, e-cigarettes are poised to make inroads with a new generation of young people.
This is probably the most valid point of the article. Yes, there are unknown health consequences of long term use of e-cigarettes. But when compared to the known risks of long term cigarette use, many smokers prefer the unknown, especially considering thus far there have been no reported cases on adverse health effects among the millions of vapers. And yes, the electronic cigarette is making inroads with the new generation, but reasonable laws can curb this. And it is unreasonable to ban or demonize any product based on concern a new generation may use it. If that is the case, lets ban coffee, energy drinks (which kids can legally buy), alcohol, and the most abuse substance category on earth; prescription drugs.