The addiction topic aside, the electric cigarette (also e-cigarette or electronic cigarette) doesn’t contain tar and other harmful substances produced when smoking regular cigarettes. Though some electric cigarette cartridges come without nicotine, most users smoke nicotine liquid. Besides nicotine the electric cigarette liquid contains mostly propylene glycol; it also contains other substances like glycerol. So, the big question is:
How much safer is the mixture of nicotine and propylene glycol (e-liquid) when smoked with the electric cigarette?
Answering this question is like saying how much healthier is the electric cigarette, compared to the conventional—since common sense already tells us that no tar equals no health problems related to tar. Here are some other things to consider:
Is Nicotine like Caffeine When Separated from the Conventional Cigarette?
Until the invention of the electric cigarette, everyone knew that nicotine is harmful because it leads to smoking conventional cigarettes. What about nicotine itself? Is it like caffeine—good in small doses but harmful in large? Is nicotine by itself, a harmful substance? If pure nicotine is safe in small doses, what is the safe dose?
Are Propylene Glycol and Other Ingredients of E-liquid Safe?
Propylene glycol, a common food additive, is generally recognized as safe. But because smoking an electric cigarette is as addictive as smoking a conventional cigarette, how safe is propylene glycol when used daily? The same applies to other ingredients of e-liquid like glycerol, also a food additive.
Is Nicotine and Propylene Glycol Mixture Harmless When Vaporized and Inhaled?
Note–I said when vaporized and inhaled. The first reason for this question is because they might change their chemical qualities when they vaporize. The second is that some parts of the electric cigarette ( the mouthpiece and its polyester core in particular) are made of less durable materials, which could emit fumes because of the heating.
What Doses of Electric Cigarette Smoking Are Harmless?
Say nicotine, propylene glycol, and other ingredients found in e-liquid are safe when inhaled. But how much inhalation is safe, compared to the conventional cigarette?