October 27, 2015

How Does Vaping Affect Your Health?

What do the top Google searches say about your state? A housing blog recently put together an infographic based on the last 11 years of the top embarrassing Google searches, listed by state. These searches reveal a great affection for cheesy 90s music and bad movies, a proclivity for what not to wear fashion choices (crocs, anyone?!)…and questions relating to various venereal disease symptoms. Find your state’s top searches here.

But, not surprisingly, most states had a large number of interest in vaping. Vaping is the use of e-cigarettes (battery powered cigarette-shaped devices) used to vaporize a nicotine based liquid that simulates smoking. These are commonly used as a “safe” alternative to smoking tobacco products and are available in a variety of fruit, candy and mint flavor combinations.

As a common go-to method for quitting or tapering tobacco use, you may be wondering how safe they actually are. Since they are a relatively new product, long term health risks from vaping aren’t yet known. There are a variety of scientific research studies currently being conducted. Thankfully, recently busted the salacious and tabloidesque story circulating on Facebook of a woman’s friend dying of suffocation from vape oil as untrue, but these products still pose significant health risks.

The U.S. currently had 6.8 million new cases of COPD diagnoses last year

The U.S. currently had 6.8 million new cases of COPD diagnoses last year, according to the CDC, and many of these people are using vaping as a way to reduce tobacco use. The majority of liquid products used in vaping still contain nicotine which is a stimulant drug, is linked to cardiovascular disease and addiction, and is poisonous in large amounts. The ingestion of these liquid products are implicated in the recent death of a toddler, making their presence in your household a worrisome hazard, especially in the presence of small children and pets.

A recent study of e-cigarettes using mice showed vaping may weaken immune system responses to bacteria and viruses, making consumers vulnerable to respiratory infections. This is especially problematic for people already suffering with respiratory diseases, such as COPD and emphysema.

There are healthier alternatives available to quitting smoking if you or a loved one is trying to quit. Consider an online support group, programs through workplaces and hospitals and meetings at local churches. As we begin the cold and flu season, please consider making the safe and healthy choice to avoid vaping!