What are E-Cigarettes?
E-cigarettes (electronic cigarettes) are battery-powered devices that simulate the smoking of conventional cigarettes.
Each device is generally made up of 3 sections:
1. A Battery: The power source
2. A Cartridge: Contains water, flavouring, and sometimes, nicotine
3. A Vaporizer: Heats up the contents of the cartridge to create an inhalable vapour
Are E-Cigarettes Legal?
At the moment, only the sale of nicotine-free e-cigarettes are legal in Canada. See here for info. on the proposed Tobacco and Vaping Products Act (Nov./16)
In Ontario, e-cigarettes and vaping supplies can only be sold to individuals 19 years and older.
Although in talks, Ontario has not yet adopted harsher regulations for smoking e-cigarettes. This means vaping is still legal in some places where regular smoking is not. e.g. enclosed spaces (unless specified by the individual institution).
Are E-Cigarettes Less Harmful than Conventional Cigarettes?
Although they are perceived as being a less harmful alternative to tobacco, the following ingredients have been found in some e-cigarettes:
Volatile organic compounds
Vapour containing heavy metals
Furthermore, as E-Cigarettes are still relatively new, the long-term effects from exposure to second-hand vapour remains unknown. Possible short-term effects, on the other hand, have included acute eye and respiratory irritation.
E-Cigarettes As An Aid to Quit Smoking?Although some e-cigarettes have been marketed as a cessation aid to help quit smoking, these claims have not been supported by strong evidence. As such, Health Canada does not yet recognize them as a tool to quit. If you are looking to quit smoking, we suggest you check out our previous post here for some helpful tips & resources:
We hope this post has helped to inform you a bit more on the subject of e-cigarettes!
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