It's mind boggling that a device that has improved the lives of
millions of people has been subject to so much misinformation and
Or maybe it isn't so surprising. After all, e-cigarettes pose a threat
to the status quo of the tobacco and pharmaceutical industry, plus
The following are some of the more common myths and misinformation
concerning electronic cigarettes
Myth: There hasn't been enough research done on ecigarettes
of research has been done; and plenty more is currently being
Myth: Ecigs are a gateway to smoking
This has never been demonstrated to be a major issue in any study.
Stating this is a little like saying eating pizza is a gateway to
eating dog poop.
A study of statistics from the UK's Office for National Statistics in 2014 indicate fewer than one in 300 vapers who have never smoked are using ecigarettes.
more about the "gateway" myth.
Myth : There is no evidence ecigs help people give up smoking
Again, evidence shows otherwise. For example, results published in the American Journal of Preventative
Medicine revealed 31.0% of respondents who used ecigs were still not
smoking cigarettes after 6 months. Read
Myth: Ecigs cause cancer
There has been no scientific research published to back this.
Electronic cigarette vapors from good quality eliquid contain only minute traces of carcinogenic
materials (as do nicotine chewing gum and patches) and far fewer
carcinogens than tobacco cigarettes. Nicotine is not a carcinogen.
Myth: Ecig glycerol causes lipoid pneumonia
This myth has surfaced a few times. However, the glycerol used in
eliquids cannot cause lipoid pneumonia as it is not an oil. Glycerol is
an alcohol (not the type that intoxicates), not a lipid. The UK
government's Medicines and Healthcare Products Regulatory Agency (MHRA)
stated in June 2013 it is not aware of any other cases of lipoid pneumonia associated with propylene glycol or glycerine
Myth : Vaping Normalises Smoking
How can it when it isn't smoking? There is no smoke. The vapor
doesn't smell like smoke and increasingly, the devices have little
resemblance to a cigarette; particularly 2nd and 3rd generation devices.
Myth: Ecigs have many side effects
Anything new introduced to the body has the potential to cause side
effects or result in an allergic reaction. Bear in mind people have
allergic reactions to all sorts of substances, including peanut butter.
Also, some of the issues people experience when switching to
be attributed to the body adjusting after ceasing smoking tobacco. Read
more about vaping side effects.
Myth: Ecigs are illegal in <country>.
More often than not, this is rubbish. Electronic cigarettes are not
illegal in Australia, Canada, the USA, UK and many other countries,
assuming they are purchased by an adult. Where there can be some issues
is in relation to selling or obtaining nicotine
eliquids or devices containing nicotine.
Myth: Ecig liquids contain toxic anti-freeze
All sorts of substances are used for anti-freeze, including diethylene
glycol; which is extremely toxic. However, this is not the substance
used in eliquids. Liquids used in
ecigs may contain propylene glycol; which is used in foods and
medications and is generally recognised as safe (GRAS).
Myth: Ecigs damage lungs
This myth was triggered by the results of a report in 2012 based on a
study where ecigs were found to cause increased airway resistance. The
study was reportedly flawed and the media further amplified and
exaggerated the findings, which Dr. Michael Siegel, a Professor in the Department of Community Health Sciences, Boston University School of Public
Myth : Electronic cigarettes explosions are common
Good quality electronic cigarettes are unlikely to explode or catch fire,
assuming the user follows the instructions related to charging. Good
quality units are built in such a way to minimise risk of battery fire
explosion, even when misused.
The simple fact is that all lithium battery based devices have the
potential to explode - and this includes cell phones.
Myth: Passive vaping is dangerous
Some claim nicotine and carcinogens can be inhaled by bystanders.
Research published by Dr Murray Laugesen, New Zealandís most experienced researcher on smoking policy and cigarettes,
states ecig vapor "does not contain any substance known to cause death, short or long term, in the quantities found."
Myth: Many teens are getting hooked on e-cigarettes
This myth was started based on a study of teenage ecigarette use.
What those perpetuating this myth often fail to mention is the vast
majority of the teens using ecigarettes were already smokers; i.e. they
were "hooked" on tobacco first.
Myth: Ecigs Can Be Used For Marijuana
Anyone trying to use marijuana with an electronic cigarette designed
for nicotine liquids will get a nasty surprise - they simply will not
Myth: Ecigs Contain 10x The Carcinogens Of Tobacco Cigarettes
This myth originated with the UK's Daily Mail which subsequently retracted the claim - unfortunately the incorrect generalisation by the DM gave the anti-vaping brigade ammunition and the myth will no doubt be perpetuated for some time.