4 Health Insights into How Vaping Compares with Cigarettes
In today’s world, vaping is touted as the healthy alternative to smoking, but is it really true? There are certainly some benefits to choosing e-cigarettes over cigarettes, but there are also some complicated dark sides that scientists have uncovered that might convince some vapers to drop the habit.
Orders of Magnitude Safer, Alone
You’ll see statistics ranging from 50 percent to 95 percent less harmful, where scientists agree that vaping is a far safer alternative to smoking cigarettes. This is due primarily to the fact that the toxins produced by burning the chemicals found in the treated tobacco mixture simply aren’t present in e-cigarette vapor.
A primary concern among researchers is how many people don’t use vaping as a tobacco cigarette replacement, but instead use it to supplement their cigarette smoking, taking vapes into places where smoking is frowned upon or banned outright. This practice completely eliminates any benefits of vaping over smoking and puts the user at an even higher risk.
Separate, Unequal Dangers
Even if not in conjunction with smoking, there are still some risks associated with inhaling vapor, especially when the liquid contains trace metals or certain compounds known to be dangerous. One particularly common substance found in several tested e-liquid flavors was cinnamaldehyde, the compound that gives cinnamon its flavor.
When heated even just to vaping temperatures, the chemical is highly toxic to human cells, resulting in some vapers reporting mouth sores and swollen throats after using liquids flavored with cinnamaldehyde. Other liquids were found to contain other aldehydes, a type of chemical known to cause airway constriction and respiratory irritation, among other things.
Research in this area focused on comparisons to ambient air, however; this means that when compared to just breathing, vaping is pretty unhealthy, but as a replacement for cigarettes, e-cigarettes are highly preferable.
For vapers concerned about the risk of exposure to these concerning flavor compounds, making your own e-liquid with supplies from a place like The Vape Mall provides a higher level of control over what goes into your vape.
Though e-cigarettes introduce many times fewer of the toxic chemicals found in cigarettes, they remain a heated, inhaled product. That means irritation, and even if the amount is significantly less, this definitely has an effect on your lungs.
When looking at teenagers who had recently vaped versus those who had never tried the practice, researchers found the vapers were more than twice as likely to present with chronic bronchitis, typically known as smoker’s cough.
A Gateway Drug
This leads into another interesting concern: teen e-cigarette usage is skyrocketing, up 900 percent from 2011 to 2015, and many of those vaping teenagers go on to try tobacco cigarettes. Teens who had tried vaping at least once were twice as likely to report trying cigarettes, with this number doubling for each increased frequency group researchers analyzed.
Not only are teenagers flocking to the practice, but they tend to try more dangerous trends than adults as well. This includes things like “dripping”, which is the practice of dropping the e-liquid directly onto the vape coils to vape at a higher temperature, typically to produce bigger clouds of vapor.
As new as vaping is, there is still a dearth of research regarding its effects on health; these vaping fads are newer still, and, as such, even more of an unknown.
Vaping Isn’t A Healthy Substitute For Cigarettes
If you vape, you may be of the mind that you’re doing your body a kindness. Unfortunately, the science just isn’t there to back up the claims that vaping is a “healthy” alternative to cigarette smoking. If vaping helps you quit cigarettes, that’s an undeniable boon, but the habit is harmful in and of itself as well.
Meghan Belnap is a freelance writer who enjoys spending time with her family. She loves being in the outdoors and exploring new opportunities whenever they arise. Meghan finds happiness in researching new topics that help to expand her horizons. You can often find her buried in a good book or out looking for an adventure.