11.05.2012 - Health

Electronic cigarettes: the enemy in the reflection

Electronic Cigarette can be regarded as a monument or memorial in the guise of technical device. New idea occurred to its inventor – a resident of Hong Kong (ironically, the pharmacist) Han Lee, in synchrony with the loss of his father, who died of disease caused by prolonged smoking of tobacco. Thus the concept of e-cigarettes appeared – less harmful method of satisfying nicotine dependence (in the words of its creator), little-explored, and therefore more dangerous type of poison (in the words of functionaries), a bizarre curios from the West (in the words of ordinary Ukrainians).


First Interlude

“I tried to quit within five years. You know, they say, in the West at the age of sixteen starting to smoke, and we have – to throw. Once priorities are finally beginning to emerge more clearly – it becomes clear where the youth “show off”, and where serious things. But this does not help to go back to the starting point and inspiration came: “And on the lessons of life safety because telling the truth – is only a start, it does not stop.” And then were nicotine patches, nicotine patches ton again, cigarettes, patches again… until friends are not brought in from abroad in the form of a strange technology of e-cigarettes. Over the last year to return to the traditional tutu is not drawn. It remains to understand how to overcome cravings for electronic ink cartridges”.

Alexandra Naumenko, Student, 21 years old

Cancellation syndrome

It’s like running in a circle to an infinite distance. Not in the 5,000 meters and 10,000 – a marathon, at times, life-long. Dry statistics says that 3 out of 4 people can quit smoking without any noticeable problems, they say, need only a desire to get rid of bad habits – and everything will be in a mode of improvisation.

Only it is possible to improvise something wrong. Memory has the ability to keep good memories. Health problems, holding your breath – the causes that actually forced people to stop smoking, after limiting the use of nicotine over time are forgotten, like the whole film, which pushes people to their “hard disk”. But nostalgia is a positive image of cigarettes when they were still enjoyable attribute of life, helping to relax, have fun and forget about problems. All decorations tragicomedy set, running on a vicious circle begins, the leaders – the force of will, the desire for pleasure.

When it is difficult to control the withdrawal symptoms of smoking, or even refuse to hold a cigarette in his hand, in the arena there are substitutes for cigarettes, which should help deal with the problem, but whether they are safe and necessary?

Averyanov Alexander, MD, a pulmonologist explains: “A person who has a dependence on tobacco, it is difficult to give up cigarettes. Due to the fact that the body gets used to the constant nicotine stimulation of the nervous and cardiovascular systems, respiratory and gastro-intestinal tract, the refusal of cigarettes he needs time and effort to restore normal functioning. This is called a withdrawal syndrome that looks like a real physical ailment and is accompanied by worsening of mood, insomnia, irritability, and metabolic disorders”.

It was then that may be useful substitutes for tobacco, the main task of which is to reduce dependence on nicotine contained in cigarettes, in fact it is addictive. But not only nicotine – a source of harm from cigarettes – his share of only 50 %. The other half falls on the combustion of tobacco. At the heart of any method to facilitate the effects of smoking cessation is the leveling of one of the elements of a traditional cigarette.

Until recently, popular substitutes for tobacco were regarded as nicotine patches or gum and herbal cigarettes. The first is gradually delivered into the body nicotine dose to make up for its losses during smoking cessation, and the latter – can seem to get rid of dependence due to the addition of nicotine instead of grass – to smoke can not obtain at the same harmful substances from tobacco smoke, because the “grass” healthier , smells good and is not addictive.

And what’s the result? Nicotine patches and gum are struggling with nicotine addiction with the help of… nicotine. This is how to treat a person from a concussion blows to the head, and eventually ex-smoker will have to be treated for dependence on nicotine patches. As for the herbal cigarettes, the composition of their very different depending on the species and it is difficult to predict how different combinations affect the human body – they can cause allergic reactions, and their long-term use – to the development of cancer, after all, despite the absence of nicotine, the combustion of grass, too, identifies carcinogens.

So it would seem, has officially approved and 100% safe substitutes for cigarettes, and if does not exist. But progress does not stand still – and in 2004 there are electronic cigarettes – a high-tech form of delivery into the body nicotine. They work as a regular inhaler. Together with water vapor, nicotine goes directly into the lungs, and then digested as when smoking cigarettes, but without the “harm to the body”. In this case the device manufacturers say that it is necessary to monitor the time and the number of puffs to avoid overdose and poisoning. Interestingly, a paradoxical interpretation of “harm” kind of get…

“For electronic cigarettes can be addictive and does not fall into the less dependence – said Averyanov. – This is a lesser evil than the classic cigarettes, but it’s still wrong, because nicotine is poison”.

Second Interlude

“For me there is no question that the more harmful, and that healthier. I am not so naive as to actually think that if I turn on the electronic cigarette, then miraculously be able to quit smoking. And, honestly, I’m for it and do not try. E-cigarette – is the trend, trendy attribute a social pass. You can be called differently, but the essence remains the same. When the hype around them will, I do not hesitate to go back to Kent, but now you can brag and electronic”.

Andrey Sergienko, model, 20 years old

Vanity fair

There are three stages of the information received: knowledge, attitude and behavior, based on knowledge. On the dangers of smoking even know the younger students. But this knowledge are mostly lightly. Classic example – the “grandfather, who smoked, lived to 90 years”.

In Ukraine, the general attitude to disregard their own health – to a large extent defined historically. In the hierarchy of values in life has always been health is not the first place, and was leading the need to sacrifice himself for the “high ideals”. High ideals, which we see in Hollywood movies or vanilla domestic chronicles of the glamorous life of the “lords”.

And here’s how to order, from the West comes to fashion a new “toy” – e-cigarette, and even more classes, depending on the volume of the cartridge. There are A, B, C, D, E, F-classes – the higher the class, the better the performance and size of e-cigarettes. On the set of modifications already we are not talking. Here you and scented with the atomizer, and cartomizers. Choose what you want! It should be a miracle of technology from 600 UAH to $600, depending on country of origin. Replacement cartridges will cost about 10-11 UAH, each equal to 10-20 traditional cigarettes.

Imported Soup in Ukraine are mainly imported from China (Smoore) and Britain (Gamucci) British product traditionally is 1.5-2 times more expensive than Chinese. According to studies, the majority of new customers – people 30-35 years old, college-educated and middle-income 2-3 thousand UAH for one person in the family. According to the manufacturer, their customers are fully have information on the effect of e-cigarettes, and convinced of their safety.

But this is just a legalized trade side. At the same time, almost every morning, coming out of the subway “Lukyanivska”, the first thing that you can hear other sounds of a busy street, it’s “Cars for removal of coils from the clothes! Electronic Cigarette! Come, buy!” – a woman crying vigorously, trading in “all sorts of things”. And we really have to believe that the device, which is sold on the street layout, which is several times cheaper than the branded Soup on E-bay, which has nothing to do with a certificate of quality, not harm? It’s one thing to make money by selling in the open wallets Prado instead of the popular Prada, but quite another to play on the popularity of the device, which can seriously affect human health.

And while on the big screen cinema hero is Johnny Depp from the movie “Tourist” continues to burn in close-up e-cigarette, Vanity Fair in the country continues its work.

Third Interlude

“In fact, it is very difficult to be the only non-smokers in the company of smokers. It is like, do not want to start smoking, even passive. In the course I have followed a variety of sophisticated tools. For example, you can ask your friends to smoke in the wind, but most stand against him. Or, in the passive-aggressive style hints at the suffering that brings you the cigarette smoke that he was ashamed, and they gave up smoking for a few hours. It is said that your freedom ends where the freedom of another begins, but agree, friends do not manipulate the beautiful. When a few of my friends switched to electronic cigarettes, stay close to them has become easier – at least, they do not stink so unbearable”.

Elena Tereshchuk, student, 20 years old

Noble intentions

Meanwhile the world goes all-out war between the producers of electronic and conventional cigarettes, which some accuse others of unfounded allegations regarding the positive effect of e-cigarettes, while others accuse first, that those afraid of losing huge amounts of money by selling their products, stifle competition and prevent them to do their noble mission.

The noble mission is defined as follows: “With the electronic cigarette can be achieved once the two effects. A person gets a feeling of smoking tobacco with all the trappings: the subject in hand, tightening, and the exhaled smoke cigarettes tactile sensations in the mouth. In addition, he received nicotine. This is a compromise that excludes receipt of carcinogens from tobacco smoke and do not turn around in passive smokers”.

It is hard to argue – the goal is really worth the effort. But for some reason, the Ministry of Health of Ukraine recommended to refrain from buying and using electronic cigarettes, because the product did not pass the full test in the Ukraine, the results and effects of its use have not been established, and therefore it can not be considered medical equipment. “No company is not trying to get permission of Ministry of Health in the production, – says Konstantin Krasovsky, Head of Section for tobacco control of the Ukrainian Institute of Strategic Studies under the Ministry of Health. – They are registered as a “device”, ie the device. And are arranged so that some even leak. You can not control how much nicotine is inhaled man”.

Manufacturers of e-cigarettes at once declared that such statements are the Ministry of Health is not random: “Here in Ukraine, as always, is confirmed by absolute truth – the rights of one who has more money. It’s no secret that tobacco companies are closely linked with the government, not only because the arrival of huge taxes to the treasury, but also the financing of various projects, including for the party in power”.

They can agree in part, stating that Ukrainian politics are so intertwined with the business that are not isolated instances of lobbying someone’s interests. But countries such as Brazil, Canada, Denmark, Israel, Turkey, Norway, Lithuania, Australia, Uruguay, Greece, Jordan banned the sale and advertising of electronic cigarettes in their territory, the U.S. is going to do it, but Russia has repeatedly opposed their use. WHO experts propose to ban the sale of e-cigarettes until they are made necessary clinical experiments, because all the checks, which would give positive results with respect to the action of such cigarettes have been initiated to finance themselves manufacturers. “Once again we are trying to sell an extremely toxic poison, causing a heavy dependence… There are no adequate studies of these cigarettes were not. The assumption that they are much safer, made with great reserve. This is simply a new round of legalized drugs”, – says Cyril Danishevsky, chairman of the anti-tobacco coalition.

Finally, talking about the effects of production and its own producers. “Basically, these cigarettes are smoked by those who have tried all ways to quit smoking and people who want to smoke in all places and not to harm others”, – explains the manager of an online store Café-Smoke. And then suddenly adds a remark which almost completely negates the first statement: “E-cigarette by themselves do not guarantee getting rid of the habit of smoking. This is just a way to ease the process by replacing conventional cigarettes to a maximum analog form, content and effect on the body”. So can have is to determine and cease to be confused in the testimony?

Mark Twain once quipped sarcastically that there is nothing easier than to quit. They say he threw a hundred times already. But with the bitterness must be admitted that in spite of the interesting conversations adequate substitute for nicotine that would help get rid of the addiction, no. A treat migraines by cutting off the head – probably still not healed, at which you expect.

Valeria Kaarna