Dangers of Vaping

According to statistics from the CDC (Centers for Disease Control and Prevention), more than 4.9 million teens were using e-cigarettes in 2018.  Heavy advertising and appealing flavors such as mango, crème brûlée, and cool mint have attracted teens.

E-cigarettes, also known as e-cigs, vapes, vape pens, mods, tank systems, or ENDS (electronic delivery systems), are not only popular among teens but they are undeniably dangerous.  

E-cigs are designed to look like pens, flash drives, cigars or pipes.  They function with tiny battery-powered heating elements that heat liquid, producing an aerosol containing potentially harmful chemical particles.  The person using the e-cig inhales this aerosol into their lungs and then exhales.  Ninety-nine percent of all e-cigs contain highly addictive nicotine along with other harmful substances and flavorings.  JUUL is one of the most popular brands of e-cigarettes and has become very popular among teens.  In fact, JUUL pods contain as much nicotine as a pack of cigarettes.  

Nicotine is not only a highly addictive substance, but it can harm the developing brain, especially in individuals under 25 years old.  Damage from nicotine can affect learning, mood, impulse control, and attention.  Using nicotine in the form of cigarettes or e-cigarettes increases the probability of using other drugs. 

But nicotine is not the only dangerous chemical.  As of November 5, 2019, over 2,000 cases of lung injuries and 39 deaths related to the use of e-cigs have been reported.  The CDC has been investigating and thus far discovered that a chemical called E acetate may be causing lung injuries. 

In addition, e-cig liquids, also known as e-juice or vape juice, can be hazardous if accidentally swallowed, inhaled or absorbed through the skin.  According to the CDC, half of poison control center calls are related to children 5 years and younger accidentally coming into contact with the e-cig liquids. [1]

Similar to second-hand smoke, e-cigarette vapors also puts those people around the smoker at risk for lung damage.  And while scientists and medical professionals are still investigating and understanding the repercussions of vaping, recent information suggest that the chemicals can have long-term effects on the lungs.   

On top of the concerns about nicotine and other chemicals in e-cigs, the batteries in e-cigs also pose a risk.  These tiny batteries have been known to explode and catch fire.  Can you imagine what would happen if you’re smoking an e-cig just before a battery explodes?

If you have children or believe a loved one is using e-cigarettes, talk with them about the risks.  Take a look at these important resources from the CDC:

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[1] CDC (Centers for Disease Control and Prevention) https://www.cdc.gov/tobacco/basic_information/e-cigarettes/Quick-Facts-on-the-Risks-of-E-cigarettes-for-Kids-Teens-and-Young-Adults.html