The story began last year when about two thousand vapers got severe lung damage that was attributed to inhaling toxic elements when vaping. Forty-eight people died as a result.
That urged lawmakers to take measures against consuming toxic elements via vaping oils. The anti-vape laws were introduced in San Francisco, New York, Massachusetts, Michigan, and Rhode Island. These were the first laws on vaping called to prohibit this alternative to combustible cigarettes.
The biggest concern related to vaping is that it has rapidly evolved in a popular trend among teenagers and younger demographic groups.
According to statistics, the highest amount of ages are 18-29 years (85%) and 30-44 years (69%) — moreover, a significant amount of those who didn’t try vaping to quit smoking. For them, vaping is the first nicotine-related experience. But anyway it’s better than smoking, especially when you vape no nicotine juices.
The ban covers nicotine-containing e-liquids. Yet, according to recent research, it is vitamin E acetate, which causes lung injuries. The chemical is to be found mostly in black-market vapes that also contain high levels of THC.
The quality of products on the regulated official vape market is usually proven by reliable lab test results and compliance with FDA policies. Therefore, putting bans on the legal vape market may push people, especially teenagers, to non-official suppliers or back to cigarettes.
These new laws on vaping have received critical acclaim from health scientists. For example, Amy Fairchild, dean of Ohio State University’s College of Public Health, mentioned that such policies might deprive ex-smokers in the safe alternative to their harmful habit.
The overall outcomes of the situation may be prognosticated by driving historical analogies. In the 1980s, the state programs allowed drug users to exchange dirty needles for clean ones to reduce the risk of getting HIV. That action raised concerns from the part of society, as there were fears that the policy will make it easier for teenagers to use drugs.
Yet, the negative effects of HIV were more endangering, compared to the risk of endorsing drug use, and the policy was implemented successfully. As a result, the rates of infection dropped.
Today, combustion cigarettes cause about 500K death yearly in the US only. Additionally, billions of dollars are spent annually on curing smoking-related health conditions and millions for ads of cigarettes.
When compared to the by-products of tobacco combustion, vaping ingredients are totally harmless, except for nicotine which is like coffee. Therefore, when speaking about proportionate risk of smoking and vaping, Dr. Fairchild advises using the latter, at least until the 100%-safe alternative is invented.
As of today, there is no more effective way to quit smoking than electronic cigarettes. Yet, the freshness and the majority of high-end techy perks is the main reason for their popularity among teenagers.
In order not to sabotage smoking cessation efforts in the United States and eliminate the spread of vaping among non-smoking teenagers, the researchers offer to change the laws on vaping by simply adding stricter age restrictions.
Another suggested option includes higher prices on vaping-related products to make it more difficult for teenagers to buy them. FDA is also called upon to tighten regulations on the quality of ingredients of e-liquids so that the amount of possibly hazardous elements is minimized.
The scientists mentioned above express the mutual opinion: the society shouldn’t center attention on implementing new vaping laws, rather on directing the vape market back to its original purpose, that of helping promote smoking cessation.