You’re likely to notice a large assortment of vibrant cartridges, bottles, and pods loaded with flavor-infused e-liquid, or vape juice, if you visit vape shops or websites. In e-cigarettes and vape rigs, the vape juice is heated to produce an aerosol that users inhale.
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There are many different tastes of vape juice, such as candy, bubblegum, and kid-friendly cereals. Michael Blaha, M.D., M.P.H., a cardiologist at Johns Hopkins, talks about the potential health effects of vape flavors and other e-liquid chemicals, especially on children and teenagers.
What is vape juice made of?
One of the elements of e-liquid is flavor. In addition to several additional chemicals and additives, vape liquids typically contain nicotine. According to Blaha, one issue with this is the unexpected range of substances. Even the heating coil releases additional chemicals and trace metals into the user’s lungs when it turns the liquid into an aerosol that may be inhaled.
According to Blaha, “there are so many ingredients in e-liquids, and no one is taking responsibility to account for them.” He notes that while production regulations could apply to for-profit e-cigarette firms, they don’t apply to vape shops, off-brand internet sellers, or “homemade” vape juice mixtures.
According to Blaha, “Vape juice can contain a variety of things that could be toxic.” THC, the component of marijuana that gives users a “high,” tastes, colors, nicotine, and other compounds may be present. He states, “There are all kinds of concoctions.” For instance, there have been rumors that users of e-liquids may include multivitamins, essential oils, or even medication traces.
Is vaping juice secure?
Several of these e-liquid ingredients are harmful, even lethal. For instance, EVALI, or e-cigarette or vaping product usage associated lung damage, has been linked to vitamin E acetate. This vaping-related condition has the potential to be lethal, and its prevalence increased in 2019. Eating vitamin E acetate is safe, but breathing it in is not.
“There’s no denying it,” asserts Blaha. Certain individuals with EVALI have symptoms of oily chemical irritation of the lungs on their chest X-rays.
We thus don’t know what constitutes “safe” when it comes to inhaling vape juice. Something you can comfortably consume might have negative effects if you breathe it in.
According to Blaha, there isn’t much proof that the tastes in vape juice are harmful to specific users. However, there are unknowns. According to study, tastes can produce new, potentially hazardous substances when heated in combination with other components in vape juice.
Hazardous material inhalation affects more than only the lungs. A condition known as “vaporizer’s tongue,” which results in an abrupt loss of taste perception—either completely or partially—is reported by certain vapers.
How do adolescents react to flavors in vape pens?
Blaha serves individuals who have serious motivations to give up smoking as an expert in heart disease. According to Blaha, these patients are motivated to stop smoking since they are often older individuals who may have cardiac problems linked to smoking. In the smaller adult population, vaping and e-cigarette use may be helpful for those who have tried every FDA-approved method of quitting smoking without success. Some people find that using flavored vape goods makes it easier to stop smoking, with the ultimate objective being to give up all tobacco products completely.
However, Blaha is especially worried about youth e-cigarette usage and vaping, as well as the rising number of children who have never smoked who also vape. These youths are susceptible to developing an addiction to the nicotine included in e-cigarettes and vaping devices, and flavors may be drawing them in. Blaha notes that there could be more risk to the public from the popularity of vape flavors than from the flavor chemicals themselves.
According to him, tastes are important since they appear to appeal to younger generations. There is proof that children like trying out different flavors and enjoy flavors like fruit, candy, and bubble gum. It may be the case that many young individuals just vape or use e-cigarettes because they enjoy the tastes.
It is already established that using “homemade” or unregulated vape juices might introduce unknown and potentially dangerous compounds into users’ lungs, even if further study is needed to evaluate the total risk from vaping. The highly addictive nature of nicotine found in vape juice and other tobacco products is another major worry.
Blaha advises talking to a doctor about any nicotine usage and tobacco cessation choices because smoking has a significant negative influence on one’s health.