Updated: September 20th, 2018
Electronic cigarettes are all the rage these days, as millions of former smokers have set aside their tobacco products and launched themselves headlong into the exciting world of vaping.
Many other people are likely contemplating that same plunge, and in many instances, the only thing holding them back from a break with traditional cigarettes is the perceived learning curve.
If you’re one of the innumerable smokers out there who want to escape tobacco but are confused by the seemingly complex nature of electronic cigarette use, this beginner’s guide to e-cigarettes is for you.
The Essential Facts
Let’s start by dispelling misinformation about these products. If you’re intrigued by the idea of switching from tobacco to e-cigs, but put off by official-sounding media narratives that paint these devices as being just as harmful as traditional burner cigarettes, rest assured that such is not the case. The only scientific evidence available thus far indicates that electronic cigarette use is up to 95% safer than tobacco products. If you want to decrease your health risks, the research suggests that these devices are the safer choice, check out our electronic cigarette safety guide. Of course, you’ll also save money in the long run – as much as several thousand dollars a year.
Contrary to official pronouncements from some in government, a number of studies have confirmed that people can use these products to end their smoking habits. Moreover, studies also indicate that e-cig users have an easier time leaving vaping behind as well, which supports the assertion that smokers can benefit from using the best electronic cigarettes as smoking cessation tools.
One question that regularly pops up is the question about becoming addicted to e cigarettes and vaping. To answer this, we have written about vaping addiction that you should read if this is a concern:
How Do They Work?
In one way or another, every type of electronic cigarette basically operates using the same principles. They all have some sort of atomizer, which is used to heat the e-juice contained within the device. That heating process creates the vapor that users inhale when they use an e-cigarette, and it is this vapor that delivers nicotine to the body where it is absorbed through the mucous membranes of the mouth and nose and by the lungs.
How Do You Inhale?
There are really only two ways to vape: the mouth hit and the lung hit. The first involves holding the vapor in your mouth for a few seconds before inhaling it into your lungs. Most smokers are very comfortable with this approach, as it mimics the inhalation used with filtered tobacco products. This is the option that tends to maximize flavor while minimizing the amount of vapor that enters the lungs. The second option is the lung hit, which involves drawing the vapor directly into the lungs, instead of holding it in the mouth. This vaping style enables larger clouds of vapor, and used mostly with sub ohm vaping.
Identifying the Different Types of E-Cigs
One of the most confusing aspects of the vaping experience – and particularly for newcomers – is the differing types of vaping devices on the market today. Each has its place, but the very fact that there are so many options from which to choose can present a clear challenge to new vapers. We looked at each type of e-cig in detail and explained the advantages and disadvantages, its well worth a read:
Naturally, you need to know how to refill your reusable e-cigarettes. The method and products used do depend on the type of e-cig you own. Standard one-piece e-cigs never need to be refilled; you just use them and throw them away. Other devices either come with prefilled cartridges that you simply replace when they run out of juice or open tanks that you have to fill with your own e-juice. Clearomizers and advanced personal vaporizers are examples of that more advanced option.
E-juice is a topic worthy of its own guide, but the important thing to remember here is that it is safe. These juices contain nicotine, food flavorings, and either propylene glycol (PG) or vegetable glycerin (PG) as a base – or some combination thereof. All are safe from a health standpoint, though some users are sensitive to PG. If you share that sensitivity, simply find an e-liquid that uses VG as a base.
Using Your Device Safely
As with any device powered by a battery, there is always some level of risk associated with electronic cigarette use. To prevent accidents, always treat your e-cig batteries – and the rest of the device, for that matter – with the same level of care you would give to any electronic equipment. Keep your battery and e-cig away from extreme heat and water, and avoid both undercharging and overcharging. The best option for preserving your battery is, of course, to remove it from its charging station as soon as it is completely charged.
E-liquid should also be treated with respect and kept away from children and pets. Liquid nicotine is a danger when ingested, and can cause a negative reaction even when making contact with the skin. If you accidentally ingest it or spill it on yourself, contact medical services to seek treatment.
Finally, we come to what may be the most important bit of information for most newcomers to vaping: getting started. Even after reviewing this and other pieces of information you research online, you may still feel like you’re not sure what you need to buy to get started. The manufacturers have already thought of that dilemma, and offer a variety of starter kits to ensure that you have everything you need to begin vaping right away. Just buy a kit, choose your favorite e-juice flavor and strength, and say goodbye to that tobacco habit once and for all.