The use of e-cigarettes has been gathering swing over the past decade. A number of users consider e-cigarettes as a ‘healthy’ alternative to normal cigarettes. However, e-cigarettes also contain certain elements that could affect the lungs. A couple of chemicals used to flavour e-cigarettes could have adverse effects on human lungs. The human airway, known as cilia, could be impaired due to continual usage of e-cigarettes. A study conducted at Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health points to harm caused by e-cigarettes. The cells of the human airway are lined by a host of cilia. Cilia are protruding structures that cover 50-75% of the cells in the human airway.
Function of Cilia
The primary function of cilia is to facilitate proper breathing in humans. These antenna-like structures also help in clearing the lungs of dirt and dust. A disruption in the functionality of cilia could cause irritation in the lungs and difficulty in breathing. Impaired cilia could have several adverse effects on the lungs, and this necessitates proper care of cilia. According to the study, the chemicals used in e-cigarettes affect cilia. These chemicals alter gene expression to restrict the effectiveness of cilia. Cilia are the primary shield for the protection of lungs.
Controlling E-Cig Consumption
Recent studies have found that consumption of e-cigarettes have increased in recent times. College students have especially been using e-cigs quite frequently. Hence, there is a need to regulate the consumption of e-cigs amongst the masses. It is vital to break the fallacy that e-cigs are harmless for humans.