Are E-cigarettes Really Safer Than Regular Smokes?

We explore the divide between those who are pro and anti e-cigarettes

Cigarette smoking is an addictive habit that kills one Australian every half hour. Tara McIlroy was afraid she’d just become another statistic, and after smoking for half her lifetime, she managed to kick the habit by taking up e-cigarettes.

E-cigarettes were introduced to Australia five-years ago. They are battery-powered devices that heat a flavoured liquid and turn it into an aerosol that’s inhaled. Many users fill them with nicotine, which can only be prescribed by a doctor.

Tara said it’s been 505 days since her last cigarette. She’s even noticed an improvement in her health, claiming she can now breathe easier and run around with her kids without getting puffed out.

Tara had tried the patches, the inhalers, and medication from her doctor, but nothing helped her kick her habit, except for e-cigarettes.

However, experts are not as convinced about the benefits of vaping. Dr Tony Bartone of the Australian Medical Association said, there’s no evidence to prove it can help people quit smoking permanently. He said e-cigarettes might provide a “gateway to attracting a younger audience to smoking.” He even said, “Some of the compounds in the vaping solution are potentially carcinogenic.”

In the US, adult smoking rates are at an all-time low. But one-in-ten high school kids report using e-cigarettes, and unfortunately there’s not enough research to show the long-term effects of vaping.

This won’t deter Tara though, because she said her body feels better and her bank account is in better shape since she’s saved over 13-thousand dollars by swapping smoking with e-cigarettes.