A Short Discussion on Nicotine
Nicotine is a stimulant. Similar to caffeine it is safe in small doses but dangerous in larger amounts. The main difference is nicotine is a very addictive substance. What nicotine does is when it enters into your bloodstream is tells the pleasure centers of your brain to release dopamine, causing a relaxing and calming sensation. This calming sensation will eventually lead to an addiction to nicotine. Nicotine has been associated with cancer-causing consumables such as cigarettes, cigars, chewing tobacco, and etc. For many years nicotine was available only in the form of tobacco (that wasn't a tobacco quitting aid), only recently has nicotine been available in the form of E-Juice (or E-Liquid). It’s a tad bit surprising that the government wants to classify electronic cigarettes as a tobacco product even though it actually contains no tobacco at all. But with the bad name nicotine have gotten in the decades preceding electronic cigarettes, they are just associated with one another permanently.
I’m going to go ahead and rip the band-aid right off and state as of July 2014, there has not been a single death in the US caused directly by the consummation of e-juice. There have been attempted suicides, many careless parents, and several poisonings but not a single fatality in the US. But yet e-juice comes under a lot of scrutiny as what it could potentially do and how it could potentially be harmful in large amounts. However caffeine overdose has caused several deaths throughout the years, most recently a High School Prom King lost his life due to a caffeine overdose. And still we allow caffeine to be available to anyone and everyone, pre-teens getting their fix of Frappuccinos from Starbucks, energy drinks that are clearly marketing towards kids, and over the counter caffeine pills that are available to purchase by anyone.
Now don't get me wrong I'm all for keeping nicotine away from children as it does affect brain development with long term use. Although there haven't been any deaths in the US, nicotine poisoning is no joy ride either. I confess that I went through a week of nicotine poisoning when I first switched to electronic cigarettes as I purchased the wrong dosage and didn't know any better. I had headaches and I was constantly bloated. I had a mild case of nicotine poisoning. Some extreme cases involve vomiting and extreme abdominal pain. Small children and pets are susceptible to this as they love putting random things in their mouth.
To avoid accidental poisonings keep all e-juice in high to reach places away from pets and small children. As far as the end user, avoid high levels of nicotine in your e-juice bottles. Even if you are a 2 packs a day smoker, it is better to not have enough than way too much. Start out with 12mg and work your way up or down. If 12mg isn't enough you'll know it and will be vaping more often. If you find yourself with headaches, bloating, or vomiting, lower your nicotine level!
Although Nicotine is a stimulant similar to caffeine, is does have addicting properties that affect our central nervous system. Nicotine is safe is small dosages but in large quantities, it is poisonous and causes a variety of ailments to the body. Always take caution when consuming and handling nicotine, put away your e-juice bottles and keep it out of sight from children and pets. If you spill e-juice on your raw skin be sure to clean it off immediately as the nicotine can be absorbed through the skin. Most importantly be smart and stay safe!