E-cigarettes have recently become popular for regular smokers and teenagers. They were invented and patented by Herbert A. Gilbert in 1963 but were never sold or commercialized. Chinese pharmacist, Hon Lik, later started to sell e-cigarettes for the company Ruyan.
E-cigarettes supposedly help regular smokers quit smoking. While traditional cigarettes contain tobacco that increases heart rate and increases asthma, some liquids in the e-cigarettes contain no nicotine while others can contain strong doses. However, many health agencies, such as the Food and Drug Administration (FDA), have not studied the effects of pure nicotine and do not know if it is safe. However nicotine in e-cigarettes and in tobacco are equally as addicting. Nicotine is a type of stimulant found in plants and can cause side effects that increases blood pressure and heart rate. The long term effects of nicotine use is still unknown.
“As for long-term effects, we don’t know what happens when you breathe the vapor from e-cigarettes into the lungs regularly,” Director of Science and Trends at the American Cancer Society Thomas Glynn said.
According to the American Cancer Society, e-cigarettes currently are not regulated or restricted by age, which appeals to teenagers, especially flavored products, flavors including watermelon and pineapple.
Over the last two to three years, the e-cigarette market had gone up to a $1.7 billion dollars industry. Wells Fargo predicted that in 10 years that the e-cigarette industry will grow as big as the tobacco industry, if not bigger.
While studies are still being processed, e-cigarettes remain a popular trend among smokers and nonsmokers. Battery-operated e-cigarettes — which are not federally regulated — have picked up steam (no pun intended) in recent years as a less harmful option for cigarette smokers.