Electronic Cigarettes Should be Judged Fairly

People opposing the use of electronic cigarettes state that, rather than helping smokers to quit, the device only serves to continue smokers’ nicotine dependence. What this seems to imply is that all the smokers in the United States who have switched to e-cigarettes, would have stopped smoking, had they not made the switch.

This argument is far from reality and absolutely ridiculous. The fact is that, every year, only 3 percent of smokers attempting to be nicotine-free, are able to entirely quit smoking. This means that the majority of those looking to give up the smoking habit by turning to e-cigarettes are people who would not have quit anyway (belonging to the 97% who failed to quit).

Most of the smokers with an intention to quit the habit, who take to e-cigs, do so after being unable to quit using the methods recommended by the anti- electronic cigarette lobby such as nicotine replacement and prescription drugs. Since the other methods have already been tried and found ineffective, it is obvious that these people would not have stopped smoking even if they had not gone on to use e-cigarettes for their nicotine highs.

The scientific research available confirms the effectiveness of e-cigs as a smoking reduction and cessation therapy for many smokers. There is sufficient clinical and survey evidence and more recent clinical trial evidence to show that thousands of U.S. smokers have reduced their smoking or have become nicotine-free only on account of a change over to e-cigarettes.

Even when faced with these hard facts, evidence and testimonies, anti-smoking groups still choose to oppose the use of e-cigs, more because of its resemblance to smoking, in spite of the device saving the lives of those using it in place of tobacco cigarettes.

Besides, e-cigs eliminate the health hazards associated with exposure to second-hand smoke, caused to non-smokers in close proximity to smokers.

The FDA should welcome the use of e-cigarettes as devices which reduce harm to smokers as well as non-smokers and as an alternative to the millions of people addicted to tobacco cigarettes, who have not been able to stop smoking using the other recognised cessation methods. The device must be regulated to ensure minimum standards of safety and quality. With appropriate controls and regulation by the FDA, the use of tobacco cigarettes could be reduced by substituting them for the electronic device. This would also reduce the fatalities directly attributable to smoking traditional cigarettes.