Should I Start Vaping? (To Vape or Not to Vape?)

Vaping or using e-cigarettes is less harmful than traditional cigarettes because when you start vaping, you expose your body to fewer of the toxins found in tobacco cigarettes. Thus, many smokers have switched to vaping to lessen the impact on their health and to help them quit. 

So, in your journey to quit cigarette smoking, you might have wondered, “Should I start vaping?”.

If you’ve been pondering this question, then let’s talk about the pros and cons of vaping. Overall, if you’re a smoker and looking to take steps to improve your health, then we’d say yes, vaping is an excellent alternative to smoking cigarettes. However, if you’ve never smoked, then do yourself a favor and keep it that way. 

What Is Vaping?

A vape device or e-cigarette is an alternative means of consuming nicotine rather than smoking cigarettes. E-cigarettes utilize a liquid designed from water, vegetable glycerin (VG), flavorings, nicotine, and propylene glycol (PG). When a user puffs on their device, it activates a battery-powered heating element that vaporizes the vape juice, which they then inhale.

The concept for e-cigarettes first appeared in 1963. A Chinese pharmacist named Hon Lik produced the first electronic cigarette in 2003. The product made its way to the Chinese market in 2004 and the global market by 2007, becoming popular with young people. Today, vape devices are even compatible with cartridges containing marijuana.

Vaping to Stop Smoking

Over 8 million people worldwide die each year from smoking tobacco, according to the World Health Organization (WHO). Some of these people were never cigarette users and never smoked at all. Unfortunately, some 1.2 million people worldwide die each year from second-hand smoke. Therefore, it’s easy to understand why some people would like to quit smoking cigarettes.

Vaping is among the various ways to quit smoking. The concept entails gradually lowering your nicotine levels once you start vaping, so you expose yourself to fewer carcinogens.

Some smokers find the transition to vaping much more effortless than the patch or nicotine gum, as vaping still mimics the experience of inhaling tobacco smoke. Starting vaping still gives you the throat hit of cigarettes as well. 

The key to using an e-cigarette or other vaping devices for smoking cessation is using e-liquids containing lower nicotine concentrations. Besides the physical ritual of smoking, the most challenging aspect to kick is the nicotine addiction. You should start vaping with a higher dose of nicotine, similar to what you get from a cigarette so that your vape juice begins as a nicotine replacement. 

As time goes on, buy vape juices with less nicotine. You can then acclimate your body to lower nicotine levels and eventually stop vaping too. 

Is Vaping Really Healthier Than Smoking?

The argument in favor of vaping is that it is better than smoking because of the lack of tar and carbon monoxide. But is starting vaping really better for you?

For starters, vaping exposes your body to fewer toxins. In fact, the aerosol created by heating e-liquid can contain 9-450 times fewer toxicants than smoke.

A recent study found that smokers who switched to vaping experienced improvements in their health in as little as one month. Additional evidence suggests that former smokers could gain from lower blood pressure and lower heart attack and stroke risk.

Long Term Effects of Vaping

Before you order yourself a shiny, new vape pen, you should know that there are still some side effects to prolonged vape use. Unfortunately, there isn’t a lot of analysis on the long-term effects of vaping, but research is mounting. For instance, as of 2019, the Centre for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) began investigating the correlation between vaping and lung disease.

Research on prolonged, extensive vaping is not currently available either. However, initial studies indicate that e-cigs could negatively affect your respiratory and cardiovascular systems. There is a worry that vaping, over time, can cause the same heart and lung issues found in smokers.

In addition, since vape aerosol contains nicotine and other toxins, second-hand vapor is still a risk, even to people who have never smoked. Inhaling vape smoke can result in your body absorbing just as much nicotine as you would have from second-hand cigarette smoke.

If you want to use vapes without as much health risk, look for products without vitamin E acetate or diacetyl. 

Nicotine-Free Vaping

Most of the discussion surrounding the health risks associated with vaping, like lung disease and high blood pressure, is related to nicotine content. However, you can buy vape juice that doesn’t contain nicotine. 

For some, nicotine-free vaping is enticing as it offers a way to partake in the social circle of smokers without getting involved with highly addictive e-cigarettes. Yet, it’s worth noting that some studies suggest there are still side effects to nicotine-free aerosol.

Reasons to Switch to Vaping

One of the most compelling reasons to switch to vaping is health. For instance, Public Health England has said that vaping is as much as 95% less harmful than smoking. 

Besides health, the most common reason people switch to vaping is cost. There is an upfront cost associated with vaping, but the cost of e-liquid or cartridge refills over time is less than buying cigarettes. 

Also, unlike when you start smoking, vaping makes you smell pleasant and is more socially acceptable. 

If you are looking to get into the vaping experience, you should begin with a starter kit to acclimate yourself to the world of vaping. 

To Vape or Not to Vape?

If you’re concerned about your health, vaping will always be better than smoking, and it also can save you some money. 

Studies show that vape aerosol is significantly less harmful than cigarette smoke. Quitting cigarettes to vape might quickly improve your health. However, no long-term data exist to fully indicate the effects of vape use over an extended period.

Yet, if you want to quit smoking, vaping might be a good alternative. You can slowly lower the amount of nicotine you expose yourself to and still maintain the physical ritual of smoking. Vaping can help you quit smoking more smoothly.

On the other hand, if you are a non-smoker, you should stay away from vapes. A substantial amount of evidence suggests that while vaping and nicotine replacement products present lesser risks than cigarettes, vapes still have harmful chemicals. So, don’t let peer pressure get to you. You can still have a hearty social life without vaping.