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8 questions to ask about e-cigarettes

With the number of e-cigarette users in the UK approaching one million, Intellicig has compiled new guidance to help smokers make informed decisions about the electronic alternative.

To tie in with National No Smoking Day on Wednesday March 13th, Intellicig, maker of the UK’s safest e-cigarettes, has listed eight vital questions that smokers should bear in mind if they are thinking of swapping tobacco for the reduced-harm nicotine inhalation devices.

Anthony Sefton, Head of Intellicig Europe, said: “There’s been so much said about e-cigarettes over the past two years that you can’t blame smokers for feeling confused about their effectiveness. As a responsible manufacture with a track record of rigorous quality and safety testing, Intellicig is well positioned to offer reliable guidance.”

1)    Are the ingredients clearly listed on the packaging?

The most important component of any e-cigarette is the nicotine preparation (or e-liquid) inside that is converted into a vapour for inhalation. The principal ingredients are nicotine, water and a solvent, which could be propylene glycol or, better still, glycerol, which has been shown to cause less throat irritation. Look for a list of ingredients to be sure about what you are inhaling.

2)    What is the nicotine content?

The nicotine content of electronic cigarettes is a crucial factor to consider. It should always be pharmaceutical standard nicotine – so look for evidence of that. Some e-cigarettes deliver different amounts, but the nicotine content should be consistent and clearly labeled.

3)    What kind of testing has been done to ensure the safety of the e-cigarettes?

A continuous testing programme is important to ensure product quality and safety remain consistent. Each product should carry a batch number for traceability, and the manufacturer should be committed to a schedule of batch testing to ensure standards are maintained.

4)    Is there a helpline to call for information and advice?

If you have any problems with your e-cigarette or questions about using it, you’ll need to contact the manufacturer. Check to see if they have a good website and access to a helpline for customer support.

5)    Where are the e-cigarette and e-liquid manufactured?

Many e-cigarette products are imported wholly from the Far East, where UK-standard manufacturing practices and scrutiny may not be applied. This could have an impact on which brand a smoker decides to choose.

6)    Are you trying to quit smoking?

If so, e-cigarettes may not be right for you. E-cigarettes are not promoted as smoking cessation devices. They offer smokers who are unwilling or unable to quit a reduced-harm alternative which allow them to continue enjoying a pleasurable and familiar method for satisfying their nicotine cravings, but without the harmful by-products of tobacco combustion.

7)    What if you don’t like them?

While aiming to closely replicate the experience of smoking a cigarette, e-cigarettes are undoubtedly different, and some smokers may not feel comfortable with them. Although a few days of adjustment are recommended, your e-cigarette brand should offer a money-back guarantee for peace of mind.

8)    How many do you need to buy?

Your e-cigarette starter kit and refills should come with an indication of the equivalent number of cigarettes, to help you keep track of your intake. But bear in mind that everyone smokes differently so that is only an approximate guideline. Also remember that, unlike a real cigarette, you can pick it up and put it down as you wish, giving you complete control.