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Electronic cigarettes may help smokers' memory while they kick the habit 

Jump to full article: ScienceDaily, 2012-04-17


Electronic cigarettes -- battery-operated devices that provide nicotine via inhaled vapour -- may help the memory as well as ease cravings as smokers quit their habit. These are the findings of research presented April 18 at the British Psychological Society's Annual Conference, held at the Grand Connaught Rooms, London (18-20 April 2012).

Dr Lynne Dawkins of the University of East London conducted the research on 85 regular smokers (men and women). They were randomly given an e-cigarette with either nicotine or a placebo, or told to just hold the e-cigarette without using it. After five minutes of using the 'cigarette' as much as they wanted, participants completed a cravings and mood questionnaire. They repeated the questionnaire a further 20 minutes after using the e-cigarette. In addition, 60 of the participants completed a working memory task 10-15 minutes after using the e-cigarette.

The results showed that the e-cigarette with nicotine helped men more than women in terms of reducing their craving and improving their mood. The placebo e-cigarette was just as good as the nicotine e-cigarette for women. Those tested for working memory revealed that e-cigarettes with nicotine helped both men and women maintain working memory compared to those in the other groups.

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