Vaping, vape pens and e-cigarettes have become a healthier wave of the future. Across the country smokers are putting down their cigarettes and turning their backs on lung cancer, emphysema and heart disease for a cleaner, safer alternative to smoking. Cigarette users no longer want to smell of smoke, or to have their clothes, cars and houses covered with a thin sheen of nicotine-laced tobacco film. They no longer want to be forced to step outside in the middle of the winter just to grab a smoke, nor do they want to stand at least 500 feet from a public entrance or exit in order to feed their habit.
The Addictive Nature of Cigarettes
In the 1950’s and 60’s, smoking was a way of life. It was the social norm. A pregnant mom would happily light up a cigarette in the doctor’s office as he expressed his concerns about the baby’s low birth weight. A family on a trip traveled down the highway with the windows rolled up and cigarettes a-blazing, no one giving a second thought to little Johnny’s ongoing cough.
While the media toted cigarette smoking as dignified, powerful, distinguished and elegant, many consumers bought into the commercialized push and picked up their first pack of cigarettes. Figures like James Dean, Steve McQueen, Audrey Hepburn and Clark Gable fed into the desirable allure of smoking and millions were hooked.
Cigarettes not only provided a way for new smokers to emulate Hollywood’s heroes, the nicotine provided a sense of relaxation and stress relief. It travels to the brain quickly and elevates your heart rate and your mood. Once the drug has dissipated from the body, it begins to crave another cigarette, similar to addictive behavior in cocaine and heroin. Millions found themselves addicted to cigarettes.
And Now The Bad News
As millions of people were lighting up, blissfully unaware of the hazardous materials they were inhaling into their lungs, the Surgeon General began an extensive investigation on cigarettes and their long-term effects.
On Jan. 11,1964 the Smoking and Health: Report of the Advisory Committee to the Surgeon General stated smoking cigarettes increased the mortality rate of cigarette users 70 percent over non-smokers and estimated smokers on average increased their risk of lung cancer to 10 times higher than no-smokers. The report also stated there were other health issues for smokers: chronic bronchitis, emphysema, heart disease and low birth weight babies.
While the report shocked the nation, what could smokers do? They were already addicted and, in many cases, quitting had proven to be impossible. After the Surgeon General’s report, the image of Hollywood’s elegant cigarette took a hit. Eventually, Hollywood began reducing the incidents of smoking in movies and television shows, marketing of cigarettes was scaled back due to lawsuits and the impression of smokers significantly changed.
Smoking is no longer seen as desirable; it is seen as a filthy habit. Smokers are now shunned, isolated from society, forced to go outside to smoke or corralled into a smoking lounge at an airport. What can they do? They fell for the media blitz and started smoking only to discover doing so has put them at a tremendous health risk, but thanks to the nicotine’s addictive nature they cannot stop.
Vaping, Vape pens and E-cigarettes a Healthier Wave of the Future
Vaping is the inhalation of a vapor, usually through a vape pen or e-cigarette. Alternative cigarettes have been a godsend to thousands of people as an alternative to smoking. Many smokers who have tried quitting with every product out there: patches, nicotine gum, and Chantix (an oral medication for nicotine addiction), have found a solution in vaping.
People who swapped traditional cigarettes for e-cigarettes have reported experiencing overall better health, easier breathing, better sleeping, and have even reported having better check-ups at the doctor.
Besides the obvious health benefits of vaping over smoking, vaping does not leave behind a smoky smell or a tobacco film, nor is there any emission of a noxious cloud of chemicals that could harm others, just a fine vapor which dissipates immediately. The e-liquid, a liquid form of nicotine that’s heated by an element found in vape pens and e-cigarettes, comes in a wide variety of flavors that users can enjoy.
Moreover, vaping is more socially acceptable than cigarette smoking, since the unpleasant issues associated with cigarette smoking have been eliminated: no smell, no mess, and no secondhand smoke issues. While several cities are trying to ban vaping everywhere that smoking is banned, it may be too late. Trends show vaping, vape pens and e-cigarettes are a healthier wave of the future.
Commentary By Deborah Baran