Fact vs. Fantasy: The Truth about Vaping

Over the past few months, we've heard a lot about vaping. We've heard from consumers, advocates, parents, doctors and politicians, and yet no one can come to a conclusion about vaping e-cigarettes.


Let's take a look into some information about vaping!


Myth #1: Vaping is as harmful as cigarettes.


False. E-liquid contain vegetable glycerin, propylene glycol, natural and artificial flavoring and nicotine if you choose.


Cigarettes contain the following: Acetanisole, Acetic acid, Acetoin, Acetophenone, 6-Acetoxydihydrotheaspirane, 2-Acetyl-3-ethylpyrazine, 2-Acetyl-5-methylfuran, Acetylpyrazine, 2-Acetylpyrazine, 3-Acetylpyrazine, 2-Acetylthiazole, Aconitic acid, dl-Alanine, Alfafa extract, Allspice extract, oleoresin and oil, Allyl hexanoate, Allyl ionone, Almond bitter oil, Ambergris tincture, Ammonia, Ammonium bicarbonate, Ammonium hydroxide, Diammonium phosphate, Ammonium sulfide, Amyl alcohol, Amyl butyrate, Amyl formate, Amyl octanoate, Alpha-Amylcinnamaldehyde, Amyris oil, trans-Anethole, Angelica root extract, oil and seed oil, Anise, Anise star, extract and oils, Anisyl acetate, Anisyl alcohol, Anisyl formate, Anisyl phenylacetate, Apple juice concentrate, extract and skins, Apricot extract and juice concentrate, L-Arginine, Asfetida fluid extract and oil, Ascorbic acid, L-Asparagine monohydrate, L-Aspartic acid.... and that's just the "A" chemicals. There are at minimum 7,000 chemical compounds and at least 70 of them are carcinogenic.


Myth #2: It's just water vapor, right?


False. E-liquid typically does not contain water. There are some companies that include de-ionized water into their liquids, but I haven't seen them personally. If there is water in e-liquid, it is less than 10% of the whole bottle. Most companies have gone away from using water in their e-liquids. E-liquid consists of vegetable glycerin, propylene glycol, natural and artificial flavoring and nicotine if you choose.


Myth #3: Vaping doesn't contain nicotine.


Partially true. E-liquid ranges in a variety of nicotine levels. An average vape shop carries the following e-liquid nicotine levels: 0mg (0.0%), 3mg (0.3%), 6mg (0.6%), 9mg (0.9%), 12mg (1.2%), 18mg (1.8%), 24mg (2.4%), 35mg (3.5%) and 50mg (5.0%).


All e-liquids do contain the warning "This product contains nicotine. Nicotine is an addictive chemical." Actually, even devices, tanks and coils have this warning, despite them being metal boxes and glass tanks.


E-liquid companies are required to have the warning label as well as the nicotine level listed.


Myth #4: Vaping causes popcorn lung.


False. Diacetyl is the only related chemical to popcorn lung. Popcorn lung, or bronchiolitis obliterans, is a respiratory condition that damages the smallest airways in the lungs causing coughing or shortness of breath. E-liquid manufacturers have removed diacetyl from their e-liquids, at least in the United States. In 2015, Harvard said that they found diacetyl in e-liquid, but did not say if it causes popcorn lung. That being said, diacetyl is found in cigarettes as well.


In 2006, this study was conducted to find diacetyl in cigarettes. https://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/abs/10.1002/tox.20153 Later, e-cigarettes were tested, and here are results: https://ehp.niehs.nih.gov/doi/10.1289/ehp.1510185.


Despite both testing positive for diacetyl, cigarettes are 750 times higher to have diacetyl exposure than e-cigarettes.


Myth #5: E-cigarettes are not regulated


False. The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has taken over regulations of e-cigarettes in 2016. On August 8th, 2016, the FDA enforced an immediate ban of sale to anyone under the age of 18. The FDA is also requiring the Pre-Market Tobacco Authorization (PMTA) to do scientific studies on each product. These products include devices, tanks, coils and e-liquid.


Myth #6: E-cigarettes do not help people quit smoking cigarettes.


False. Although there are no clinical trials in the United States, there are 13,000,000 people who use e-cigarettes to quit smoking traditional cigarettes. The United Kingdom also has encouraged their citizens to use e-cigarettes as a way to quit smoking and/or using traditional tobacco products. Here is some information for the United Kingdom: https://www.nhs.uk/smokefree/help-and-advice/e-cigarettes


The United Kingdom recognizes the life saving technology and allows for vaping in public places, including hospitals!


Myth #7: E-cigarettes are causing all of these health issues and deaths.


False. The Center of Disease Control (CDC) has shared that Vitamin E Acetate in illicit THC cartridges have been the root of these lung injuries and deaths. The CDC has not confirmed this as the sole source, but has suspicion to believe that Vitamin E Acetate is the culprit. THC cartridges, also known as "dab pens" are widely available for purchase through social media such as Instagram and Snapchat, as well as from person to person interactions. Vaping flavored nicotine e-liquid has been around for over ten years now, with zero implications due to e-liquids.


Myth #8: E-cigarettes blow up!


Somewhat correct. Improper battery safety causes e-cigarettes to "blow up." The correct term is vent, not blow up. Batteries need to be taken care of.


Typically, these are 18650 lithium-ion batteries. These batteries need to be properly taken care of, by ensuring the wrap is secure, the insulator is intact, the batteries do not make contact with metal (such as change or keys) and that the batteries are charged correctly.


Vaping360 has a wonderful post about battery safety. Check it out here: https://vaping360.com/learn/battery-safety/


Any situation where a battery has vented has been due to improper battery usage. Remember, if you aren't sure about your battery, please ask a vape shop employee!


There are plenty more myths about vaping. There is only so much that I can think of at 1:31 A.M.


I hope you find this information beneficial! As always, feel free to reach out to me by emailing me at yes.i.vape.too@gmail.com, or click on any of the social media links above to reach me!


Keep calm, vape on!


~Mik

Questions? Comments? Let me know!

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