An e-cigarette is an Electronic Nicotine Delivery System (ENDS). ENDS come in many shapes and sizes, and are often called “e-cigs,” “vapes,” “mods,” “JUULs,” etc. ENDS are considered tobacco products by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration.
What is in the aerosol or “vapor”?
ENDS aerosol is not harmless water vapor!
The aerosol is created when an e-liquid is heated. There are many factors that influence what types and amounts of harmful substances are in the aerosol. The type of e-liquid and its ingredients, and the amount of power and temperature used to heat the aerosol all affect what is in the aerosol. This can make researching e-cigarettes harder because there are so many different combinations to test. Some of the harmful substances are more likely to be in the aerosol when a high power (voltage) and temperature are used. (Source)
ENDS aerosol can contain harmful and potentially harmful substances including:
- fine and ultra-fine particles
- volatile organic compounds
- heavy metals
- cancer-causing chemicals → formaldehyde (human carcinogen), acetaldehyde (possibly carcinogenic)
- other substances, depending on the flavoring used in the e-liquid and the temperature it’s heated to
What can the chemicals in e-cigarettes do to my body?
Fast Facts from #StillBlowingSmoke:
- Nicotine & the brain: The brain does not stop developing until the age of 25 years, making young adults more susceptible to long-term neurological effects that nicotine addiction brings, in addition to teeing up their susceptible brains for addiction to other drugs like cocaine. (US Surgeon General Report).
- Immune system: E-juice has been proven to effectively prevent immune cells from doing their job.
- Your heart: Studies from the University of Louisville found e-juice flavors negatively affect the heart. A preliminary study in Europe found e-cigarettes with nicotine cause arterial stiffness, as well as raised blood pressure and heart rate.
- Popcorn lung: an irreversible, life-threatening lung disease caused by diacetyl, the chemical that is safe to eat, but awful for the lungs when inhaled. Diacetyl (along with its similarly dangerous cousins 2,3-pentanedione and acetoin) is in many popular flavors of e-liquid, like cheesecake, caramel flavors, watermelon, pomegranate, and cherry.
- Oh, there’s more: Find more symptoms & use this ‘Still Blowing Smoke” interactive graphic about the effects of vaping on your body, secondhand vapor, third-hand nicotine.
Find more information about electronic cigarettes, tobacco, and free 24/7 confidential support to quit at QuitlineNC.com.