Cigarette smoking is one of the toughest addictions to break. Hence, a lot of research is being carried out to find out newer smoking cessation methods or tools which can help people quit this unhealthy habit. One of the most smoking alternatives has been electronic cigarettes.
This is basically a nicotine delivery device that is battery-operated and contains a cartridge filled with e-liquid. It resembles a cigarette closely and can even be puffed like one without the tobacco smoke. The efficacy of this device to help smokers quit for long term has never been studied and was the main aim of this research study.
40 smokers who were unwilling to quit were chosen for this pilot study to understand the efficacy of e-cigarettes on reduction and abstinence from smoking. The study was conducted over a period of 6 months during which they were asked to make 5 visits to monitor use of the product, number of cigarette smoked, levels of exhaled carbon monoxide and also adverse effects if any.
At the end of the study, it was seen that there was a 31% reduction in the number of cigarettes that were smoked each day by the participants. On an average, 25 cigarettes were smoked by the participants each day before being part of the study but after the use of e-cigarettes, this number was decreased to an average of six per day. The only adverse effects noted were dry cough, mouth and throat irritation, all of which diminished by the end of 24 weeks. All the participants also had a positive experience using this product throughout the entire study period.
The conclusion of the study was that electronic cigarettes were found to be an effective smoking cessation tool which can play a significant role in enabling smokers to quit this deadly habit. E-cigarettes were able to provide the nicotine craving which is the main reason why people found it hard to quit without the harmful effects of the tobacco smoke. Moreover, since the device resembles a cigarette closely, people found it easier to make the switch and reach out lesser and lesser for the real thing.