Many have rejected tobacco-based cigarettes in favor of e-cigarettes, mainly citing lower health risks apparently offered by the latter. But how much do vapers who advocate vaping know about the vaporizers they are using, especially the nicotine being inhaled through e-cigarettes? Young people who vape do not know much about the product they are using found the results of a recent study.
The study was conducted by a team of researchers at the Stanford University School of Medicine. Based in California, it surveyed 445 participants within the ages of 17 to 24 about their vaping habits, especially about the products they use. The data used was collected in 2019 as a part of the final phase of the Tobacco Perceptions Study.
It found that out of the participants who used pod-based e-cigarettes, about 50% shared those with friends. About half of them did not know if the cartridges used were of the same brand or not. Pod-based e-cigarettes, which resemble a thumb drive, are fitted with a pod filled with a nicotine-infused liquid. The pod snaps into a vaporizer.
“These young people had no idea how much nicotine they were consuming,” said the study’s senior author, Bonnie Halpern-Felsher, Ph.D., professor of pediatrics. “Teens are not using these pod-based products more than other e-cigarettes because of health or the flavors offered. They tell us, ‘It’s because we can hide these, and the smell produced is less obvious.’ This ability to ‘stealth use’ is concerning.”
The authors also raised concerns over how the young vapers have no awareness of how much time it takes for them to finish a pod, thus highlighting how they are not too concerned about the dosage, nicotine content, or the possibility of addiction with this. However, more concerns were raised about the regulations around vaping which enable a lack of information at the consumers’ end. Present regulations do not require manufacturers to give a complete list of ingredients.
The results of this study have been published in the Journal of Adolescent Health.