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October 17, 2019

9/27/2019 11:12:00 AM
Vaping: What you don't know can hurt you

By Carley Rider
Surely by now everyone has heard about vaping, seen someone vaping, or vaped themselves. Some may think that is not the case, but vaping has become so easily concealed that most probably were not aware it was happening. A few years ago walking on a college campus, there may have been a few smokers littered throughout campus. Today, it's hard to walk for 5 minutes without seeing or smelling vaping. In 2018, the vaping industry was valued at USD 10,261.8 million. In 2025, the vape industry is expected to be valued anywhere from USD 47 billion to USD 61 billion. If you asked most vape-users how vapes work or what the negative effects of vaping are, most would not have an answer.
Vapes operate off of an internal battery, which heats up a pod of juice or e-juice to create the vapor that is then sucked from the source into the lungs. According to Center on Addiction - Addiction Science, Prevention & Treatment Research, the heated e-juice aerosolizes nicotine, flavoring and chemicals such as heavy metals (nickel, tin, and lead), ultrafine particles, formaldehyde, toxins, and carcinogens, all of which enters the body upon taking a puff. These chemicals can get stuck in the deepest part of the lungs, which as you can imagine, anything in your lungs besides air is dangerous.
Vaping products go by many different names. With the many different names are many different styles, shapes, and sizes. Vaping products are also known as e-cigarettes, e-cigs, cig-a-like, e-hookahs, mods, vape-pens, vapes, tank systems, and juuls. Most vaping products look like everyday items: USB flash drives, pens, and portable cell phone chargers. Other types of products are less easily concealed such as mods and tank systems.
When vaping was first introduced, it was introduced as a "healthier" alternative to smoking, not to lead people into a nicotine addiction. With smart marketing by the vaping industry, they began to target the younger generations with different flavors of pods/juice. One e-juice site,, has its vape flavors separated by the categories sweets, desserts, breakfast, tobacco, fruit, and menthol. This site brags over 150 different vape flavors. On numerous occasions, some vapes advertised as "nicotine free" were found to have contained nicotine.
It is very difficult for scientists and researchers to assess the dangers and long term effects of any specific products as there are so many different calibers on the market. Vaping products are still relatively new to the point; side effects of the products are also hard to link to vaping alone. One thing to note is vaping devices are not approved by the FDA.
The younger the vape-user, the more likely the person is to develop an addiction to anything, especially vapes. This is the product of young, developing brains being influenced by an outside substance. As stated by the Centers for Disease Control (CDC), each time a new memory is created or a new skill is learned, stronger connections or synapses are built between brain cells. Young brains build synapses faster than adult brains. Nicotine alters the way that these synapses are formed, making those connections weaker than those of a non-nicotine using brain.
The CDC also stated that some flavored pods have been found to contain diacetyl, linked to serious lung diseases such as popcorn lung. Popcorn lung is the nickname for Bronchiolitis Obliterans, a disease where small, yet important air passageways get irritated and inflamed leading to scarring. This build-up of scar tissue causes the passageways to become more narrow, making it harder for the body to get enough air.
According to JUUL, one of the most common brands of vapes, one of their Juul pods is equal to one pack of cigarettes in regards to nicotine.
Vaping has been linked to cancerous tumor development, preterm deliveries and stillbirths in pregnant women, harmful effects on brain and lung development during fetal development and adolescence.
CNN produced an article stating that 7 people have died from vaping related causes. The CDC reportedly has activated its Emergency Operations Center. Researchers are looking into 380 cases of lung illness associated with vaping.
A federal lawsuit filed recently in the U.S. Eastern District of Wisconsin accuses Juul and partial owner Altria targeting young people with "false and deceptive marketing campaign" to sell juuls as safe and cool, while not acknowledging that nicotine is addictive and vaping can be dangerous. "It was completely unacceptable to market to teens," attorney Chuck Crueger of the Milwaukee law firm Crueger Dickinson said in a statement. "By their actions, JUUL and Altria have undone decades of work that was done to combat youth addiction to nicotine and should be held accountable."
Writing this article and researching this topic really hits home. Being a college student myself, I see second-hand the effects vaping has on my friends and peers. One friend, whom has been juuling for several months lost their juul and iphone and was more panicked about not having the juul than the phone itself. To me, that spoke volumes considering how attached everyone, including myself, is to their phones. Admittedly, I have tried vaping, but do not own a vape, nor do I consider myself a vape-user. When playing sports and doing physical activities with my friends, I notice that many of them get short of breath much more quickly than the non-vape-users do. At this point, vaping is considered cool and I have heard many people brag about how many pods they go through on a daily or weekly basis. I know this article probably drops me a few points in popularity, but as a writer, it is my job to inform. I choose to write on this topic, in hopes to shed light to our communities on just how serious of an epidemic vaping is becoming.

Reader Comments

Posted: Friday, September 27, 2019
Article comment by: William Deckert

No no no.This is completely wrong. You need to do better research than just checking the misinformed sites.

What is happening here is that these illnesses are all lipoid pneumonia, which is caused by the inhalation of fat cells into your lungs. People used to get it all the time back when they prescribed mineral oil as a laxative. And that is the problem here. Oil is being used in off the street vape pods (only used by Juul devices) and from legal marijuana vendors.

The main ingredient isn't the nicotine or the marijuana in these things. It's the oil that acts as an activator.

The main difference between these deaths being attributed to vaping as a whole is just that. But it isn't vaping that is at fault. Real vape 'juice' has natural, water soluble ingredients. Propylene glycol and vegetable glycerin. Propylene Glycol has been used in medicinal inhalers since the 1950's! And vegetable glycerin is used in everything from soaps and conditioners to sweeteners in your low fat meals!

Both of these ingredients dissolve in water. But do you know what doesn't? Oils.

Now on to Juul 'pods'. Each pod is said to be the equivalent of a single pack of cigarettes in terms of nicotine content. Using more than one of these in less than an hour (which I have seen people do) is not only scary, but down right dangerous. You ever seen a person smoke a pack of cigarettes in an hour? They're shaking. Green. And they usually throw up. I DO vape. And I do it as a substitute to smoking real cigarettes. Not only am I able to breathe easier, but I have my sense of taste and smell back as well. And I don't inhale all of the cancer causing carcinogens either. It IS healthier than smoking cigarettes, but that being said: Inhaling anything into your lungs that isn't supposed to be there is bad for you. And most of us who do vape understand this point.

Oils are causing the lipoid pneumonia that is harming people. Juul is the cause of the nicotine addiction in children. And now that Juul has someone from the tobacco industry in charge, it's only going to get worse. But do not condemn all of vaping for the misdeeds of one company.

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