Vaping 101

Why, oh why, does there always have to be something new to worry about?!? What the hell is vaping and why does it seem everyone is doing it?

It all started with the introduction of e-cigarettes in 2007. Now, there are several different types of vaping devices, including MODS or advanced personal vaporizers and vape pens. E-cigs look like a cigarette and vape pens look like an old fashioned fountain pen. Both are more simple and less expensive than a personalized vaporizer. There are also hookah pens and e-pipes. Vaping devices have a mouthpiece, a cartridge for the liquid or juice and a heating component. They are powered by a battery. The heat turns the e-liquid into an aerosol you can inhale.

What do people smoke them?
The aerosol is lighter and smells better than cigarette smoke. There are more options for people who like the sensation of smoking, and people think vaping is healthier than cigarettes. You still get that nicotine “buzz.”

You can also inhale something to give you a high, most popular is THC, the mind altering chemical in marijuana. Opiates, synthetic amphetamine drugs, and synthetic weed are also vap-able.

Vaping is on the rise among teens. The same kids who would hold their nose as they walked past a smoker, are vaping in their spare time, because they are lulled into a sense of safety. Yes, there is no tar and cigarettes contain a multitude of other harmful substances. But, experts warn safer is not necessarily safe. Nicotine is extremely addicting, no matter the mechanism of delivery. Research as to the harms of vaping are in the early stages, but easy to see at the very least, not vaping is healthier than vaping. The other smokable drugs are obviously dangerous and can open a floodgate into a body of water we want to avoid — one that can drown our children before we even realize it is happening.

My message to my kids remains: Do drugs, you die — maybe even the first time. Also, vaping is as stupid as cigarette smoking.


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Author: Karen Latimer

Karen is a Family Doctor, mom of five and founder of Tips From Town.


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