The vaping industry has witnessed significant changes in the government’s attitude towards electronic cigarettes this year. In July, for instance, the FDA announced a comprehensive regulatory plan that recognized e-cigarettes’ potential to make a positive public health difference, a stark contrast to the agency’s previous stance. In the UK, Stoptober, the government-backed annual campaign to challenge smokers to quit, is endorsing e-cigarettes for the first time, demonstrating a change in the nation’s attitude towards electronic nicotine delivery systems (ENDS). While these developments are encouraging, many e-cig related myths persist despite evidence that they are nothing but misconceptions.
Myth 1: E-Juice Is a Mystery
According to the American Lung Association, combustible cigarettes contain approximately 600 ingredients. E-juice, on the other hand, consists of a handful of ingredients: Propylene Glycol (PG) or Vegetable Glycerin (VG) or a mix of the two, water, flavorings, and nicotine, although non-nicotine options are also available. PG is a colorless, odorless liquid found in pharmaceuticals, beauty products, and edible items while VG is a viscous substance used in sweeteners, personal care products, and food.
Myth 2: Vaping Leads to Smoking
Numerous studies have confirmed that there is no evidence that vaping leads to smoking. A report published by the Tobacco Advisory Group of the Royal College of Physicians revealed that “e-cigarettes are being used almost exclusively as safer alternatives to smoked tobacco, by confirmed smokers who are trying to reduce harm to themselves or others from smoking, or to quit smoking completely.”
Another more recent study by Public Health England examining vaping among teens concluded that concerns that e-cigarettes are enticing teenagers into smoking traditional cigarettes are unfounded. The data showed that of the 60,000 teens surveyed, 3% vaped regularly, and the majority of them already smoked combustible cigarettes.
Myth 3: Smoke and Vapor Are Equally Dangerous
Tobacco smoke contains more than 7,000 chemicals, at least 69 of which are carcinogenic, according to the American Lung Association. Some of these toxic chemicals include ammonia, arsenic, benzene, butane, and carbon monoxide, just to name a few. The health hazard resulting from long-term vapor inhalation, however, “is unlikely to exceed 5% of the harm from smoking tobacco,” according to the Royal College of Physicians.
What are some vaping myths that you’ve heard about? Tell us in the comments below!