Nicotine is a chemical compound that is produced naturally in tobacco and other plants in the nightshade family. It is a stimulant, often used recreationally in cigarettes and tobacco products.

Electronic cigarettes (e-cigarettes) are devices that enable the user to inhale nicotine. They work by heating and vaporising a solution that contains nicotine, glycerine and sometimes flavourings. Since there is no burning involved, there is no smoke and there is no tar or carbon monoxide produced – two of the most harmful products of smoking. Inhaling nicotine from an e-cigarette is referred to as vaping. Vaping can help some cigarette smokers to quit or cut down on smoking.

Read more on our page on tobacco.

Updated November 2021.