E-Cigarettes Less Addictive than Cigarettes: Study

By: Gizbot Bureau

E-cigarettes are less addictive than traditional cigarettes for long-term smokers, according to research that sheds new light on how nicotine addiction works. "We found that e-cigarettes appear to be less addictive than tobacco cigarettes in a large sample of long-term users," said Jonathan Foulds from the Pennsylvania State University College of Medicine.

The popularity of e-cigarettes, which typically deliver nicotine, propylene glycol, glycerin and flavourings through inhaled vapour, has increased in the past five years. E-cigs contain far fewer cancer-causing and other toxic substances than cigarettes, however their long-term effects on health and nicotine dependence are unknown, researchers said.

E-Cigarettes Less Addictive than Cigarettes: Study

To study e-cigarette dependence, researchers developed an online survey, including questions designed to assess previous dependence on cigarettes and almost identical questions to assess current dependence on e-cigs. Higher nicotine concentration in e-cig liquid, as well as use of advanced second-generation e-cigs, which deliver nicotine more efficiently than earlier "cigalikes," predicted dependence.

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Consumers who had used e-cigs longer also appeared to be more addicted. "However, people with all the characteristics of a more dependent e-cig user still had a lower e-cig dependence score than their cigarette dependence score," Foulds said.

"We think this is because they're getting less nicotine from the e-cigs than they were getting from cigarettes," Foulds said. "It has the potential to do good and help a lot of people quit, but it also has the potential to do harm. Continuing to smoke and use e-cigarettes may not reduce health risks.

Kids who have never smoked might begin nicotine addiction with e-cigs. There's a need for a better understanding of these products," Foulds said. The findings also have implications for developing e-cigs for smoking cessation.

"We might actually need e-cigarettes that are better at delivering nicotine because that's what is more likely to help people quit," Foulds added. The study was published in the journal Nicotine and Tobacco Research.

Source: PTI

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