Is vaping the lesser evil of cigarette?
Vaping is gaining popularity more than any traditional tobacco product among youth nowadays. More and more younger people who had never smoked now has started using vape as a new way of being on trend. Many believe that vaping is less harmful than smoking and the cost is much cheaper than the traditional cigarette. In addition, vape liquids are often formulated with fancy flavours to make it more enticing and appealing to the younger people. This is a serious issue especially to our youth who never smoked but decided to taking up the habit without fully understanding its long term health consequences.
Since vaping are still relatively new, there are sparse concrete evidence to ascertain the long term effects of vaping to an individual’s health. Vape contained fewer toxic chemicals than cigarette but it also contains harmful chemicals that are not found in the traditional cigarette. There are various liquid preparations with different chemical ingredients sold in the market leading to difficulties in quantifying the amount of exposure and which chemicals is the potential culprit causing patient’s symptoms.
Nicotine- containing vapes are still addictive and can cause withdrawal symptoms after discontinued usage. There are also reported cases of nicotine-induced seizure after usage of vape. Nicotine can also affect the heart by increasing adrenaline causing increase in heart rate and blood pressure. Some studies have linked usage of vape with cardiovascular events such as heart attack and coronary artery disease. There are also increase reported cases of respiratory symptoms such as coughing, wheezing, breathlessness and chest pain linked to use of vape. EVALI (e-cigarette or vaping use-associated lung injury) is caused by inflammatory response in the lungs triggered by inhaled substances which is not an easy task to diagnose in the early stage. The chest imaging showed similar changes with acute lung injuries associated with chemical inhalation
More and more evidence in the form of case reports showed that vaping is not as safe as it may claimed. Vaping might appear to be a less risky choice for chronic smoker who are trying to quit smoking. However, that does not mean there are no risks involved, even if the vape liquid is nicotine-free as the long term health effects of vaping may take decades to develop. It is probably best to quit smoking and vaping altogether. If you have difficulty to quit smoking, talk to your doctor for further information.