Dangers In Vaping
“Vaping,” or the act of inhaling the vapor produced by the heating up of a water, chemical, and nicotine or marijuana-based compound has recently taken the smoking industry by storm. This inhalation method has been around since the 1960s, further developed by a 52 year old Chinese pharmacist named Hon Lik, who designed what would become the first commercially successful electronic cigarette (E-Cig) in 2003. Hon’s inspiration for creating this device was his father, who died of lung cancer resulting from years of heavy smoking.
In the early 2000’s vaping was quickly absorbed by North American and European markets as a legitimate means to quit smoking, at which time it was also still viewed as a safer method of administering nicotine and cannabis. It was not until September of 2008 that the World Health Organization deemed vaping an illegitimate cessation to nicotine replacement therapy -helping people quit smoking cigarettes. They raised concerns over the existence of other toxic chemicals and substances present in vapor smoke and asked that more studies be performed on this subject to determine the legitimacy and safety of this smoking replacement option. Most people are unaware of the severity of health risks associated with the dangers of vaping – some adverse affects proving to be just as dangerous as cigarette smoke. From popcorn lungs to MRSA infections, these facts are certain to make you think twice about buying another E-Cig.
Vaping lowers the body's ability to fight infections: 594 genes that are known to aid immune support and help fight off infection were tested. Here is what they found. Both vape users and cigarette smokers showed signed of diminished activity in these genes, however the vape group in particular exhibited decreased activity in 300 more genes in comparison to regular smoking! This evidence suggests that compounds found in the liquid used to create the vapor has an immunosuppressive effect on the body.
Lithium Ion-powered Vapes can blow up: This explosion happened as a result of the overheating of a lithium ion battery used to power the vape, producing a dangerous explosion.
Loosely monitored levels of Nicotine: In a FDA study conducted in 2009 not only found that vape cartridges labeled as “nicotine-free” contained traceable levels of nicotine, but the actual levels of nicotine in retail refillable cartridges across the board differed from their labels. World Health Organization, the Center for Disease Control and Prevention, and other authoritative health-related groups with regard to vaping is the fact that there are few current measures in place to regulate the levels of nicotine, in addition to other harmful substances.
Ingestion of Vape liquid is poisonous: Poisoning occurs in three ways: ingestion, inhalation, or absorption through the eyes and skin. An even more alarming finding showed that over half of these emergencies involved young children under the age of 5, one possible explanation being the candy and fruit flavor varieties of these substances that children might be drawn to. These liquids are also found to cause moderate to severe skin irritation when accidental exposure occurs, a legitimate concern for users who use refillable cartridges.
Chemicals in Vape smoke can cause "Popcorn Lung" : Common flavoring substances found in vape liquid caused permanent, and sometimes fatal scar buildup in the lungs. These flavoring chemicals, 2,3-pentanedione and diacetyl, systematically destroys the lungs’ smallest airways, resulting in a lung condition known as bronchiolitis obliterans, or “popcorn lung.”
Metal particles are found in Vape smoke: Metals such as tin, nickel, silver, iron, aluminum, silicate, and chromium were present in this vape smoke in levels equal to, or greater than the concentrations found in traditional cigarette smoke. These nanoparticles are known for penetrating deep into the respiratory system and reaching vulnerable sacks in the lungs, often causing irreversible damage and permanent scarring. Internal bodily exposure to these metals are also linked to risks for cancer and abnormal cell growth.
Vapes also contain Formaldehyde: Vaping 3 milligrams of liquid at a voltage commonly used in commercial vapes produced 14 milligrams of formaldehyde. These researchers estimated that a tobacco smoker would receive .15 milligrams of the same chemical per cigarette, or 3 milligrams per pack. This indicates that many vaporizers contain more formaldehyde than regular cigarettes, a chemical associated with cancer risks when inhaled.
Some studies on E-Cigarettes written by Industry Funded Scientists: Some scientific evidence indicating that vaping is safer than regular cigarettes are written by scientists funded by the vaping industry. They specifically called out Public Health England (PHE), who produced a press released shared by the BBC claiming that E-Cigarettes are up to 95% less harmful than tobacco. They found that the authors of this paper served as consultants to well-known and wealthy e-cigarette distributors. The article warns that three of the scientists hired to uncover the dangers of vaping that are directly funded by the E-cigarette industry, presenting an undeniable conflict of interest, in addition to the methodologically weak scientific evidence present in their studies.
It's time to take notice
One of the major retail giants for Vapes is Juul. Juul has a net worth of roughly $16 Billion. In the early years of Juul their advertising methods were bright colors and youthful looking models. Focusing on flavors such as fruits and youthful juices such as lemonade and fruit punch. For many years the tobacco industry, with the subtle pushing from the FDA, have spent millions to make sure that children don't get targeted through marketing. Juul posed young people flirtatiously while holding Juul. They went as far as developing a catch pharse making into a usable verb-as in "to Juul". The attorney general of Massachusetts, also investigating the company, contends that Juul has been luring teenagers to try the product and has introduced many to nicotine. Her investigation will examine Juul’s efforts to audit its own website and other online retailers that sell its products to see how effective they are at preventing minors from accessing Juul or Juul-compatible products. (Federal law prohibits sales of e-cigarettes to anyone under 18.)
Senate democratic whip Dick Durbin (D-IL) and 10 other Senators sent two letters to Juul Labs, Inc., the makers of the device, saying that their products "are undermining our nation's efforts to reduce tobacco use among youth." The devices put "an entire new generation of children at risk of nicotine addiction," one of the letters says. US regulators want Juul and other e-cig companies to do more, too. US Food and Drug commissioner Scott Gottlieb said that he was "deeply concerned" about teen use of e-cigarettes.
"We see what's happening with Juul," he said. Rep. Frank Pallone Jr., a Democrat representing New Jersey, also recently called on the FDA in a letter to start reviewing the Juul and other e-cigs.
Because of a current rule, however, many recent e-cig manufacturers are not required to apply to the FDA for review until the summer of 2022.
The Developing Teen Brain is Highly Sensitive to Substances
The crux of the problem centers on what nicotine does to the teen brain — especially in an area called the prefrontal cortex, which plays a key role in emotional control, decision making, and impulse regulation.
Like other drugs such as marijuana or alcohol, nicotine has a different impact on a developing brain than on the brain of an adult. The prefrontal cortex is often at increased risk in teens who use substances because it doesn't finish developing until around age 25. Brain imaging studies of adolescents suggest that those who begin smoking regularly at a young age have markedly reduced activity in the prefrontal cortex and perform less well on tasks related to memory and attention compared to people who don't smoke. Teens are far more vulnerable to addiction than adults, since their brains are more plastic and still maturing.