Cigarette Filters Facts

Spit tobacco, pipes and cigars are not safe alternatives to cigarettes. “Light” or “low-tar” cigarettes aren’t safe either.

Today’s machines produce 14,000 cigarettes every minute. The complete procedure is highly automated, and computers do a large amount of the work. That’s because computers can work all night and don’t take smoke breaks.

Contents of Cigarette Apart From Tobacco

Additionally to tobacco, cigarettes contain paper made of cellulose laden with many added chemicals that serve to give it a whiter appearance, prettier ash, and a smoother burn. The paper is sealed with glue and often contains a monogram made of colored ink.

The cigarette filter is in fact a very complicated structure that is made up of four parts. Basically, it consists of fibers bound together by glue, but there are also chemical additives that improve the taste and speed up the rate at which nicotine is delivered to your brain.

Also, it is the cigarette filter that determines if a cigarette can be called a “light” or “ultra-light” brand. These low tar, low nicotine brands have filters that contain tiny holes in them. The holes allow outside air to be brought in with each puff of a cigarette, thus diluting the tar and nicotine to lower levels. Or so the theory goes.

The Working of Cigarette Filters

To understand why the holes in your filters don’t really work, we have to go back in time to about 30 years ago, when the idea of using filters was hatched. At this time, the public was getting concerned about the ill effects of smoking.

In response to their concerns, the tobacco companies came up with the idea of devices that could be said to filter out unhealthy particles in the cigarette smoke.

These new filtered cigarettes were tested to see if they produced lower levels of tar and nicotine. Special machines were designed that could smoke cigarettes and measure the levels of tar and nicotine in the smoke.

And yes, according to machines the holes worked and the filtered cigarettes delivered lower amounts of tar and nicotine. The problem with this method – still used today – is that people don’t smoke like machines.

People have lips and fingers that cover up the holes. Also, people can inhale deeper, take more frequent puffs, and hold the smoke in their lungs longer – which is, in fact, what smokers of “light” brands tend to do.

Light or Ultra Light Brands

People who smoke “light” cigarettes need to smoke by taking deeper puffs and more frequent inhalations in order to extract more nicotine out of their “lighter” cigarettes.

If they smoked them like regular cigarettes, the nicotine levels in their bodies would fall, and nicotine withdrawal symptoms would appear. The end result is that these brands don’t really deliver lower amounts of tar and nicotine, no matter what the packages say.

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