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E-Cigarettes: More People are Making the Switch

Feb 26, 2014 01:15PM ● By Erin Frisch

E-cigarettes can be a good, possibly safer (although the jury is still out) alternative to smoking regular cigarettes, as well as a way to help you quit smoking. Basically, they all work the same way: The user inhales through a mouthpiece that triggers a sensor, which turns on a battery-powered heater that vaporizes liquid nicotine (various levels depending on the cartridge) and a compound that creates a type of vapor smoke for effect. The user feels a puff of hot gas, simulating the puff of smoke from inhaling a regular cigarette, which is expelled when the user exhales. The vapor is not as thick as regular cigarette smoke and does not contain any tobacco products or other carcinogenic substances found in regular cigarettes. Instead, they contain a synthetic nicotine substance to satisfy cravings. There are many different types on the market. Read on for more information about the types of electronic cigarettes and to see if one might be right for you.

Rechargeables. Good for light to medium smokers, these have the advantage of providing you with reusable batteries and replaceable nicotine cartridges in several flavors. Larger batteries last longer, of course, and cartridges are compared to lasting as long as between one and two packs of regular cigarettes. They also offer the best benefit–cost ratio over time. A good-quality starter kit will run you between $40 and $100.

Example: Halo G6. One of the most popular devices on the market, it’s powerful and well-designed and comes in nine colors. Each starter kit includes two batteries, USB and car chargers, a five-pack of cartridges in your choice of flavor, and a carrying case. Blu e-cigarettes, commonly seen in convenience stores, are also in this category.

Disposables. This type of e-cig can be found at many gas stations and over the counter at most stores where you can buy regular cigarettes. They are convenient, no muss–no fuss, and can be tossed in the trash like a normal cigarette when you’re finished. Disposables are not as potent as some types of e-cigarettes, however, and may not satisfy heavier smokers. Best for light or social smokers and first-time users, these run anywhere from $7 to $12 a pop.

Example: Crown 7. This device is good quality and comes in nine different flavors. Each one lasts up to 500 puffs (depending on how deeply you inhale, that’s equivalent to one or two packs). Crown 7 has one of the biggest batteries for a long-lasting experience and has tobacco flavoring to satisfy most smokers. Other examples of disposables include White Cloud and Pro-Smoke.

e-Go. With larger tanks and batteries than the standard rechargeable style, the e-Go provides (still rechargeable) satisfaction for heavier smokers who need a larger, slightly heavier cloud of vapor in their mouth and throat to satisfy cravings. Larger tanks hold enough liquid nicotine to last all day, and the battery holds a charge long enough to go with it. Unless you buy a starter kit ($40–$100), the batteries and cartridges (ranging from atomizers to cartomizers to tankomizers) are sold separately for this style, but batteries are made with a standard thread size that will screw onto most cartridges.

Example: Halo Triton. Halo provides a high-quality starter kit in 11 different colors. You can choose from several liquids as well. Halo carries what many consider some of the better liquid nicotine flavors as well. Other choices include the Dial-A-Volt by Vapor 4 Life, and the Cigavette MEGA and ULTRA.

E-Liquids. are what go into e-cigarettes that allow you to enjoy them. There are thousands of flavors ranging in the level of nicotine provided to the user. They range from 0 milligrams (mg) (just vapor) to 54 mg of nicotine, but may be labeled as nicotine-free, low-, mid-, or high-strength. There is no standardization among manufacturers yet for what amount of nicotine constitutes each of these strengths, so starting to use e-cigarettes can involve some trial and error.

Have you had success with e-cigarettes, either for quitting or enjoying as an alternative to regular cigarettes? Share with us in the comments.

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