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Is IQOS Better than Cigarettes?

Is IQOS Better than Cigarettes?

While Cigarette smoking has been marked as a major health hazard, different organisations have worked out possible solutions to curb the growing menace. Among these are possible alternatives, such as Philip Morris’ invention of IQOS, aiming to reduce the risk of smoking.

But is IQOS truly a better option than the traditional cigarette?

This blog explains to you the possible risks and benefits associated with IQOS. Although the final decision on what to go for remains with you, we’ll explain whether IQOS is a promising alternative.

Read on to help you decide wisely.

What is the Deal with Cigarettes?

According to the American Cancer Society, most people lean on cigarettes because of their fast nicotine absorption into the blood. However, these come at the expense of inhaling harmful tobacco smoke that contains tar and other chemical toxins that spread all over the body with every puff you take.

The harmful toxins in the body contribute to a huge range of severe health conditions that would, however, be averted if you used a less harmful alternative.

Some of the potential risks that come about with these harmful chemicals are:


Cigarettes are the leading causes of different forms of cancer, from lung cancer to mouth, throat, pancreatic, kidney, bladder, etc. The chemicals in tobacco smoke that promote the development of cancer cells include formaldehyde and benzene, among many others.

Respiratory Issues

Smoking severely affects the human respiratory system. From damaging lung airways and tissues to causing chronic pulmonary diseases, inhaling toxic substances like tar reduces lung function. This may lead to chronic coughing, wheezing, and several other irritants.

Without delving into cardiovascular diseases and many other chemical-related illnesses, cigarettes negatively impact a human being’s quality of life.

Reduced Risks of IQOS than Smoking Cigarettes

Potential cigarette alternatives such as IQOS, although not 100% safer, they are much better than facing the significant health risks of traditional smoking.

Here are some of the reduced risks that come with using IQOS:

Lower Exposure to Carcinogens

Carcinogens are cancer-causing agents present produced in the combustion of tobacco. However, IQOS potentially lowers exposure to these carcinogens through its controlled heating feature. By operating in lower temperatures than the required ranges for combustion, IQOS reduce exposure to harmful chemicals.

Reduced Harmful Chemicals

Operating on heat-not-burn technology, IQOS devices significantly reduce the production of harmful chemicals as it is with cigarettes. Through minimised combustion and carefully controlling temperature, IQOS users are exposed to no harmful chemicals while enjoying their tobacco experience.

Lesser Impact on Second-Hand Smoke

While cigarettes burn tobacco, producing smoke filled with harmful chemicals, IQOS heats the tobacco sticks without burning them. The heating in the IQOS devices eliminates the second-hand smoke released to the environment. Instead, IQOS produces flavoured aerosols that are more favourable for the surrounding environment of non-smokers.

Why not also read: What is IQOS?

However, IQOS does not eliminate the risks, but the devices greatly reduce second-hand smoke-associated risks.

Nicotine Delivery and Addiction

Nicotine is a highly addictive substance in cigarettes, and it plays a significant role in establishing smoking habits. What happens is nicotine stimulates the release of neurotransmitters such as dopamine, bringing about pleasurable sensations every time you take a puff.

This reinforces the smoking behaviour over time and causes regular consumption of cigarettes because of the created physical and psychological dependence.

On the other hand, IQOS delivers nicotine through carefully thought and managed heating processes without combustion. This means in an IQOS device; the nicotine gets released as a flavoured vapour compared to smoke in cigarettes.

Overall Satisfaction and Experience

IQOS aims to deliver a similar experience to cigarette smoking regarding nicotine delivery and all sensory aspects. This means IQOS manufacturers ensure its users are fully satisfied as they would be when puffing a cigarette, from inhaling to the taste and throat hit.

However, taste and some slight sensory aspects may vary depending on individual cigarette use, satisfaction levels and experiences. But IQOS presents the flavoured HEETS to avoid boredom with the same tobacco taste.

The additional flavour and aroma with IQOS, therefore, means a reduced odour and lesser lingering smell compared to what’s experienced with cigarettes. This gives you a reason to enjoy your tobacco experience and gives you discreet tobacco use opportunities that you wouldn’t get with cigarettes.

What to Expect After Switching to IQOS

Switching from smoking to IQOS comes with a guaranteed set of changes and experiences from past cigarette users. Here are some of these aspects to expect:

Reduced Smoke Odour

Cigarette smoking often has a strong and stringent odour that sticks around your clothes, curtains, furniture and overall environment. The accumulating smell even gets absorbed into your skin and hair, potentially causing social havoc on the user.

But since IQOS heats the tobacco sticks than burning them, there is lesser odour in your surrounding environment. This further comes with improved social interactions guaranteeing enhanced personal hygiene and comfort.

Potential Satisfaction

IQOS devices are designed to provide a similar experience to smoking cigarettes. This means when using IQOS, you are assured similar smoking satisfaction but without the negativities of smoking.

However, the satisfaction may vary from one individual to another depending on how much one was used to smoking.

Adaptation to New Ritual

Despite their design and creation to mimic smoking, IQOS devices operate slightly differently from smoking. Imagine getting used to inserting the HEETS and understanding the IQOS maintenance tips, including charging schedules and cleaning procedures.

This means it may take some time to fully adapt to using the devices, but it is worth it.

Potential Risks Associated with IQOS

When considering IQOS as a possible alternative to cigarettes, it is good to be aware of the potential limitations that come with its use.

Firstly nicotine is an addictive substance that can lead to dependence. This may make quitting tobacco a challenge. It is, therefore, important to note that using IQOS will not necessarily eliminate the risk of nicotine addiction.

Secondly, while using IQOS reduces exposure to harmful chemicals, it does not withdraw the potential health effects. These risks may come with long-term usage. However, more research is ongoing regarding the potential health risks that may emerge.

You must also be alert about dual use, where one may find themselves using cigarettes and IQOS in parallel situations. This may limit the harm reduction features that come with IQO and instead increase nicotine dependency and exposure to every danger that comes with it.

Why not also read: IQOS vs JUUL

In conclusion, when considering whether IQOS is a better alternative, you must put in place every factor that matters. These include individual circumstances and health goals, among many other factors. IQOS indeed offers reduced harm compared to cigarette smoking while delivering the same tobacco experience.

The decision is, however, with you. You must carefully weigh and evaluate the available evidence on the two products. Be careful about dual use!

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