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Electronic Cigarettes for Tobacco Harm Reduction

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There has been a lot of controversy over the use of electronic cigarettes and their effectiveness with many people questioning whether they are beneficial or not. An article published today on the Harm Reduction Journal website argues in their favour and thinks they are an effective tobacco harm reduction method. The article on the Harm Reduction Journal website states that smokers are only really faced with two options, quit or suffer the harmful effects of continuing smoking. Quitting removes the potential adverse health consequences however, because of the nicotine in cigarettes, smokers struggle to quit completely. It has been shown that, of those who choose to quit, 80% of smokers relapse in the first month, and only about 5% achieve their long-term goal. It is estimated that there are 1.2 billion people worldwide that smoke and with nearly 6 million deaths annually, smoking is one of the single most preventable causes of premature death. The article suggests that Tobacco Harm Reduction may save millions of lives by offering smokers two new options; non tobacco interventions aimed at decreasing tobacco consumption and alternative products. With many of the negative health effects being causes by the inhalation of burning tobacco, smoking alternatives such as electronic cigarettes, snus and pharmaceutical nicotine products are proving popular. Electronic cigarettes offer an alternative that is not only healthier but which also replicates some of the ritual associated with smoking. It is with the help of electronic cigarettes that smokers can remove the dangerous and cancer-causing chemicals while still receiving the nicotine intake that causes the craving that may cause them to relapse. Although nicotine is toxic, the authors of 'Nicotine Safety & Toxicity' concluded that it presents little cardiovascular risk, and that nicotine has not been shown to be carcinogenic. The ISCD (Independent Scientific Committee on Drugs) ranked the harms of drugs used in the UK and ranked cigarettes as the most harmful nicotine containing product by far. Electronic cigarettes were ranked as similar in harm to nicotine patches. The article states that, "In essence, these products appear to be much safer than tobacco cigarettes and comparable in toxicity to conventional nicotine replacement products. Of note, retailers have already sold hundreds of thousands of E-cigs with no evidence that these products have endangered anyone when used as directed". Litejoy Electronic Cigarettes

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