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Is nicotine dangerous?

Nicotine does not cause smoking related disease, such as cancers and heartdisease. These are caused by other chemicals found in tobacco smoke. Nicotineis addictive however and it is why people continue to smoke despite knowingabout the harmful effects of tobacco. Nicotine in e-cigarettes poses littledanger to adult users. In order to prevent accidental poisoning of children,e-cigarettes and liquids should be stored away safely (just as you would withhousehold cleaning products and medicines, including NRT products).

Is secondhand vapour from e-cigarettes dangerous?

Some studies have found traces of toxicants in secondhand vapour, but at  such low levels that they do not pose a health risk to bystanders. There is  no evidence that secondhand vapour is dangerous to others; however, it  helps to be respectful when using e-cigarettes around others, especially  non-smokers.

I get a bit of a cough when I use my e-cigarette

This isn’t unusual and you may benefit from switching from an e-liquid  with a high proportion of propylene glycol to one with more vegetable  glycol, which can be more soothing.

I’ve heard that e-cigarettes can produce harmful chemicals?

Some studies have detected chemicals in e-cigarette vapour that are known  to cause health problems. However, these chemicals have been found at  very low levels that are unlikely to represent a serious risk to health. When  e-cigarettes are used within normal operating levels (e.g. not overheated),  there are far fewer harmful chemicals present in their vapour than in tobacco  smoke. If the e-liquid is being overheated it tends to produce an acrid,  unpleasant taste – you will know if this happens!

Are e-cigarettes safer for me than smoking?

Yes. Experts estimate that e-cigarettes are, based on what we know so far,  around 95% safer than cigarettes. Smoking is associated with a number of  very serious health risks to both the smoker and to others around them.  Therefore smokers who switch from smoking tobacco to e-cigarettes  substantially reduce a major risk to their health.

Will I end up using more nicotine with my e-cigarette and overdosing?

This is a common misconception around e-cigarettes. Much the same as  with NRT, if you have more nicotine than you are used to then you might  feel a little nauseous or lightheaded, both of which pass quickly. If this happens  you can just reduce the level of nicotine in the e-liquid that you buy, or use  the e-cigarette less. You are in no danger of poisoning yourself and there  have been no cases of overdose from inhaling e-liquid.

Are e-cigarettes dangerous, do they blow up or catch fire?

As with any rechargeable device, like mobile phones and laptops, it is  important to charge with the correct charger and not to leave an e-cigarette  unattended whilst charging. Ensure that you buy from reputable suppliers  and avoid generic charging equipment. There have been reported cases of  e-cigarettes causing fires at a rate of around two per week in the UK, this is  far fewer than the number of fires caused by cigarettes.

How do I choose a flavour?

This is a personal choice. Some people start with tobacco flavour, or menthol  flavour if they smoke mentholated cigarettes, but one of the advantages of  e-cigarettes is that you can experiment and try new flavours. People usually  try a few different flavours until they find the one that suits them. Some  people choose to move away completely from tobacco flavours, preferring  sweet and fruit flavours for example.

How many bottles of e-liquid will I need in a week?

As a rough guide, for a 20-a-day smoker two 10ml bottles of 18mg/ml  e-liquid will usually last a week. However this will depend on the quality  of your e-cigarette and your puffing technique; with better devices and  experience, e-liquid use will often reduce. You’ll soon get to know how  much you need.

What nicotine strength e-liquid should I go for?

How much nicotine you require will depend upon how much nicotine you  are getting from your cigarettes. And of course how much nicotine you get  from your e-liquid will depend upon the type of e-cigarette that you use and  how you use it. As a rough guide, most 20-a-day smokers find that 18mg/ml  (1.8%) is sufficient, so you could start with this and see how you get on.

How will I know when I need to change the atomiser in my e-cigarette?

The life of your atomiser (heating coil) will depend on how much you use  your e-cigarette and the quality of your device; typically it should last up to  two weeks but it could be a lot longer than this. Low vapour production,  a ‘burnt’ taste or poor / reduced flavour are signs that your atomiser needs  to be replaced.

Do I use e-cigarettes in the same way that I smoke cigarettes?

Using an e-cigarette is different to smoking a cigarette. This usually involves  taking slower and longer puffs over a longer period of time; this is because  e-cigarettes heat a coil in a liquid (think of a kettle). You may feel the need  to take a few puffs on an e-cigarette at times when you would not have  smoked; this is nothing to worry about and your pattern of e-cigarette use  will develop over time.

Is it OK to smoke and vape at the same time?

Yes. There is no evidence that smoking cigarettes and vaping at the same  time increases health risks. However, the greatest health benefits are seen  when people stop smoking tobacco completely, so quitting smoking should  be the goal. Stop smoking services can provide advice and support to help.  Some people manage to switch completely to vaping quickly, whilst others  take a little time. You may have to try a number of different e-cigarettes  and e-liquids before you find the one that enables you to stop smoking  completely, but this is quite normal.

Will e-cigarettes be cheaper for me than smoking?

Yes. Once you have chosen your starter kit then you only need to replace the atomiser (heating coil or ‘head’) for a couple of euros and purchase your e-liquid which can start at 3€ for 10 ml. You will notice savings very quickly compared with buying cigarettes.

How much do e-cigarettes cost?

You can expect to pay around 30€ for a good quality, and easy to use, refillable second generation starter kit. More advanced e-cigarettes for the adventurousor experienced user can range from 40€ to several hundred euros; although a decent third generation kit can be bought for about 70€. As with other consumables, you will need to pay more for better quality products.

How often should I use my e-cigarette to help me to stop smoking?

As often as you need to help manage nicotine withdrawal and urges to smoke.  You will soon discover the best way for you of using your e-cigarette, and  find that you’re using it when you feel a need to top-up. It’s not like a cigarette,  which you would smoke from start to finish, with an e-cigarette you can sip  on it once or twice, and then put it away. If you find you’ve got it in your  mouth all the time, you might need to use a stronger e-liquid.

Which e-cigarette should I start with?

This is very much a personal choice. The refillable tank system e-cigarettes  (second and third generation) might take a bit of getting used to, but they  allow the use of more flavours and a better sensation, and generally deliver  more nicotine than the e-cigarettes that look like cigarettes. Specialist  e-cigarette retailers can provide advice and there are also internet forums  where e-cigarette users discuss the different product types.