Nicotine is one of the most addictive and widely used drugs in the world, bar none. And that's a big part of why it's so difficult for smokers to quit cigarettes. Of course, that's not the whole story, since there are replacement products that supply the drug without the damaging effects of inhaling smoke. However, these don't seem to be as satisfying since they don't mimic the movements and mode of nicotine delivery that accompany cigarette smoking.
Enter the electronic cigarette, or e-cig. The device can look like a cigarette (or cigar or pipe), but instead of burning tobacco, it provides a nicotine-containing vapour that the user inhales, thus getting a "hit" in the same way one would get from smoking. So, as a harm-reduction tool — to get smokers away from the deleterious health effects of smoking, e-cigs would seem ideal. But some have roundly criticised e-cigs as simply another way to get youth hooked on nicotine, and that using them was just a gateway to starting to smoke. In addition, others have criticised e-cigs by saying that there is no evidence that they would be used by smokers to help them quit. But now there is some such evidence.
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