E-Cigarettes & Vaping — Healthier than Traditional Cigarettes?

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E-cigarettes and vaping have gained popularity in the past few years, as consumers have been seeking an alternative to smoking cigarettes. According to a recent study, traditional cigarette usage has dropped by a great deal among American teenagers. Conversely, vaping has become more popular. Based on the report, 16.6 percent of high school seniors reported vaping in the last 30 days while only 9.7 percent had smoked traditional cigarettes. With such a stark shift, it is important that we examine the research on vaping and e-cigarettes to see just how safe these smoking alternatives are.

It should be noted that traditional cigarettes use tobacco, which causes 6 million deaths every year. Conversely, e-cigarettes do not use tobacco. Instead, they rely on a nicotine containing liquid. This doesn’t mean e-cigarettes are free of drawbacks.  In fact, The Food and Drug Administration has banned e-cigarette sales to those under 18. This can primarily be attributed to the fact that nicotine is especially dangerous to adolescents. Nicotine can obviously cause addiction, but it can also have a negative effect on the brains development. A recent study sought to examine e-cigarettes effect on cardiovascular health. The researchers found that 5 minutes of e-cig vapor lead to a 31 percent shrinkage of the arteries. The study also concluded that e-cigs cause blood cells to age prematurely.

It has been proposed that the biggest benefit of using e-cigarettes, is that it can help someone quit smoking actual cigarettes. Dr Lion Shahab stated “Part of the reason why people use e-cigarettes is to stop smoking, and we have shown that they provide effective delivery of nicotine,”. Based on the current research one could make a very strong argument that e-cigs are better than traditional cigarets. As stated earlier, it is important to note that nicotine is still present in E-cigs. As such, addiction and brain development issues are still a very real concern.