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Whether you are a teen or young adult, a parent, or even an ex-smoker, you’ve probably wondered: Is vaping bad for you?
Although some of this data is still up for debate, recent mental health findings show that vaping has negative side effects on a user’s mental health. Use our resources to get a grasp on how vaping could affect you or a loved one’s mental health and well being.
Vaping with or without nicotine has been shown to impact impulse control, especially in young adults whose brains have not fully developed yet. Some of these risks include mood disorders and permanent damage to parts of the brain responsible for memory, emotion and critical thinking. View our informative videos, as well as the resources below to understand the full impact of vaping on mental health and the brain.
Private and federally funded tests have found that the same chemicals that make cigarettes so dangerous are also present in e-cigarette products. When the liquid cartridges of “harmless water vapor” are heated into an aerosol, some of the non-dangerous components (like propylene glycol) go through a chemical change and become dangerous to ingest (like formaldehyde gas). Along with these cancer-causing chemicals, the metal pieces from the coil can break off during the same process and leave “whiskers” of dangerous particles to be inhaled.
Dangerous substances in E-cigarettes include:
E-cigarettes are electronic nicotine delivery systems (ENDS), also referred to as vapes, vape pens, e-pens, and e-cigs. They consist of three parts: a rechargeable battery, and the pre-filled or refillable cartridge and a heating element.
The e-liquid in the cartridge contains nicotine, chemical flavorings, and additives including propylene glycol (found in ENDS cartridges with or without nicotine).
99.6% of e-cig products contain nicotine, meaning almost every vape has nicotine. Using nicotine as a teen can change the way synapses are formed in the developing brain, harming the parts of the brain that control attention and learning.
This means increased nicotine use may make it harder for young adults to concentrate, learn, and control impulses. Review the dangers of vaping with nicotine and any additional dangers of vaping, regardless of whether nicotine is present.
Electronic Nicotine Delivery Systems (ENDS) are not FDA approved or regulated, which means many of the e-liquids and cartridges or pods may contain more or less nicotine than the label states. This includes liquids labeled “nicotine-free.”
76% of Minnesota students were unaware of the health risks of using e-cigarettes. It’s time to have a conversation, but it’s important to do so without criticism or harsh lecturing. With the right resources, you can provide answers in a positive way and work together to build awareness and promote a change.
Use our vaping and mental health resources to support your teens who may already be using vaping products, or to prevent them from starting at all. Our goal is to help young adults become aware of these dangers to their physical and mental health. With our guides and activities, you can start the conversation to help your teens or students Change to Chill. Start a positive dialogue today and encourage safer methods of coping with stress and peer pressure.
Get additional support to quit or help others quit e-cigarettes and nicotine. Allina Health offers tobacco intervention programs at our supporting hospitals in and around Minnesota and Wisconsin, as well as cessation programs and alternative healing methods.
Allina Health has many vaping resources for teens to help them quit their vaping habit. With pressure from friends and the stress of life as a teenager, vaping may seem like a good escape, but many teens don’t realize the big picture when it comes to how it can affect their health.
Although vaping may seem like a better alternative to cigarettes, they are a tobacco product that can damage parts of the brain that are responsible for memory, emotion and thinking. Vaping has also been linked to respiratory issues, including chronic bronchitis, shortness of breath, cough and excess mucus. Quitting isn’t easy, but community resources and your own personal support system can make the process just a little easier.
If you’re struggling to cope with your vaping addiction, here are some resources that can help: