The full name for electronic cigarettes a name by which they are sometimes, but not often, referred to is electronic nicotine delivery systems (this is acronymised to ENDS ).

The story goes that the first electronic cigarette was invented in 1963 by a man called Herbert A. Gilbert, who patented it that same year. The invention was apparently described as a smokeless non tobacco cigarette which heated a nicotine solution and produced steam which was inhaled by the user. This meant that nicotine was able to be inhaled without the burning of tobacco and paper, and thereby offered a way to smoke without smoking, as nonsensical as that sounds! (This would later become referred to as vaping , many decades later.)

Four years after Mr Gilbert invented this ingenious device, he was approached by several companies who were very much interested in working with him to begin manufacturing his invention. For one reason or another, however, this never happened and the device or the idea behind it was never heard of again after 1967. Until 2003, anyway

The invention of the first electronic cigarettes as we know them today is accredited to a fellow called Hon Lik, a Chinese pharmacist. His product worked by vapourising a liquid (made up of nicotine and a propylene glycol solution), which the user could inhale into the lungs in exactly the same way as they would with a traditional cigarette, as it would deliver nicotine into the lungs in precisely the same fashion.

An electronic cigarette working on the same principles but with a slightly altered design broke onto the Chinese market in May of 2004. Not long after that, Hon Lik s company, Golden Dragon Holdings, changed its name to reflect their emphasis on the production of smoking replacement products. The new name was Ruyan, which is said to translate into English literally as resembling smoking . Ruyan began to export their e cig products in 2005, and then in 2007 it received its very first international patent.

In 2006, electronic cigarettes began to more closely resemble the aesthetic we associate with them today. Two brothers, Tariq and Umer Sheikh, pioneered the cartomiser that year, which is the device that joins the liquid chamber to the heating coil.

Now that electronic cigarettes are starting to seriously compete with traditional cigarettes, some big tobacco companies are beginning to enter the electronic cigarette market. This is presumably so that they do not get caught out and left in a cloud of dust, so to speak (or should that be smoke?) if/when e cig convert numbers continue to rise. If 3% of smokers used electronic cigarettes in 2010, which rose to 11% in 2013, then there is no reason why that number can t double again by the time we get to 2016. The initial apprehension towards electronic cigarettes was that they were unsafe, but that myth is finally being gradually busted.

Another thing that does not have to be worried about with electronic cigarettes is second hand smoke. When someone smokes a traditional cigarette, the smoke produced is not only inhaled by the smoker, but the people around them too, and thereby poses a threat to their health. If a parent smokes around their child, the child can be at risk from this second hand smoke and it can damage their lungs. With e cigs, this is not a problem whatsoever.

ASH seem to agree with this assertion, as they said in their 2014 report ASH supports regulation to ensure the safety and reliability of e cigarettes but, in the absence of harm to bystanders, does not consider it appropriate to include e cigarettes under smokefree regulations.

Hookah smoking: is it safer than cigarettes? – mayo clinic

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Hookah smoking is not safer than cigarette smoking.

Also known as narghile, shisha and goza, a hookah is a water pipe with a smoke chamber, a bowl, a pipe and a hose. Specially made tobacco is heated, and the smoke passes through water and is then drawn through a rubber hose to a mouthpiece.

The tobacco is no less toxic in a hookah pipe, and the water in the hookah does not filter out the toxic ingredients in the tobacco smoke. Hookah smokers may actually inhale more tobacco smoke than cigarette smokers do because of the large volume of smoke they inhale in one smoking session, which can last as long as 60 minutes.

While research about hookah smoking is still emerging, evidence shows that it poses many dangers

  • Hookah smoke contains high levels of toxic compounds, including tar, carbon monoxide, heavy metals and cancer causing chemicals (carcinogens). In fact, hookah smokers are exposed to more carbon monoxide and smoke than are cigarette smokers.
  • As with cigarette smoking, hookah smoking is linked to lung and oral cancers, heart disease, and other serious illnesses.
  • Hookah smoking delivers about the same amount of nicotine as cigarette smoking, possibly leading to tobacco dependence.
  • Hookah smoke poses dangers associated with secondhand smoke.
  • Hookah smoking by pregnant women can result in low birth weight babies.
  • Hookah pipes used in hookah bars and cafes may not be cleaned properly, risking the spread of infectious diseases.