If you were thinking of using electronic cigarettes as a smoking alternative, you may be asking the question are they addictive. The simple answer to that question is yes of course they are, but at a lower level than conventional tobacco cigarettes. There is research available that shows that nicotine supplied to the human body from the vapour from an electronic cigarette, is not absorbed at the same level as it is from a traditional tobacco cigarette.
Nicotine is a drug that is known to produce pleasure and relaxation. It does this by encouraging the body to produce excessive amounts of dopamine. When a tobacco cigarette is smoked, there are compounds in the smoke called monoamine oxidise inhibitors or MOAI’s. Monoamine oxidise is an enzyme whose job it is to metabolize neurotransmitters such as dopamine and serotonin. The inhibitors basically stop the body from getting rid of the excess dopamine. In a nut shell, smoking tobacco cigarettes produces excess dopamine and stops the body from clearing it up, and that is where part of the chemical addiction to smoking derives from.
With electronic cigarettes, there are no MOAI’s present in the vapour they produce. So we can conclude that using an electronic cigarette does not carry the same chemical addictive effect.
Smoking is also addictive socially and psychologically. Smokers enjoy smoking with other people, and in certain situations. So for example people enjoy smoking after a meal, with a cup of coffee and there is also the physical addiction of actually having something in your hand. These situations make the brain aware that there are certain pleasures that come hand in hand with smoking, and the intake of nicotine. This is why when a smoker is in any of these situations they start to crave a cigarette, or nicotine. Using an electronic cigarette with e liquid recreates the physical act of smoking, they produce a vapour that looks like smoke, and they give the user a satisfactory hit of nicotine when they crave it.. Electronic cigarettes also you to control the nicotine strength much more easily.
To conclude, the use of electronic cigarettes seems to offer a viable alternative to traditional cigarettes, with a reduction in the nicotine levels.