Are Vaporizers Safe? Here’s What Science Tells Us
That’s the ultimate question among the vaping community that still leaves everyone in heated debates. Even the law and science are still divided into declaring a concrete answer on the safety of vaporizers.
Although vaporizers were originally introduced as healthier alternatives to smoking, scientific studies and researches have been popping up opposing the so-called benefits of these devices.
In this post, we’ll try to cast some light on this ultimate question. Are vaporizers safe?
Here’s what science has to say.
1. Vaporizers had helped marijuana smokers reduce lung problems
A study published in the Harm Reduction Journal conducted with marijuana users found that smokers who used vaporizers in smoking marijuana experienced less cough, feeling of tightness in the chest, and fewer phlegms.
Some experts believe this feeling of reduced symptoms is because the vapor doesn’t contain any junk from combustion – only pure THC and cannabinoids.
We still can’t argue that smoking marijuana is safe for health, especially with countless studies linking it to cancer development. If, however, the law finally declares marijuana legal, you can expect medical experts to promote vaporizers because of its easy dosage regulation and its practicality.
2. Vaporizers or e-cigarettes are 95% safer than smoking tobacco cigarettes.
A 2016 report by the Royal College of Physicians of London stated that e-cigarettes and vaporizers were effective aids to prevent death and disability of smokers, which are increased when smokers are exposed with tobacco.
For instance, cigarette smokers are known to be prone to poor oral hygiene and dental problems such as:
- Bad breath
- Gum disease development that causes tooth loss
- Higher risk of oral cancer
- Periodontal disease
- Impair flow of blood on gums, causing wounds to heal slower
Smokers who use vaporizers are less likely to experience these gum and dental problems because they’re not exposed to tobacco. They also achieve healthier lungs and skin than traditional smokers because of the absence of ash and combustion with vaping.
Despite several health-related organizations and government institutions feeling skeptical about vaporizers, the American Heart Association (AHA) is one among the few that attests to vaporizer being safer.
In their 20-page report, the AHA stated that e-cigarettes and/or vaporizers present an opportunity for harm reduction when used as substitutes for cigarettes. This is because these devices contain little to no tobacco-derived harmful constituents, which are the main contributors to conditions triggered by tobacco.
3. Smoking with vaporizers can help you avoid harmful chemicals found in tobacco smoke
A single stick of tobacco cigarette contains 599 additives, which produces 4000 chemicals when burned. These chemicals, when inhaled through smoke, enter our bloodstream and mess with our cells and our system’s daily functions. Thus, the start of disease development like cancer.
On the other hand, vaporizers only contain four chemical ingredients – propylene glycerol, nicotine, water, and flavoring (if using vape juices). Sure, nicotine’s also known to cause certain illnesses in smokers, but that’s the only chemical culprit you can find in a vaporizer. The effects are less tremendous than the side effects of tobacco and nicotine combined.
The Royal College of Physicians of Edinburgh also says using vaporizers instead of cigarettes can reduce your risk of getting cancer. This is because you’re not exposed to the known 70 carcinogens found in tobacco cigarettes.
4. Vaporizers are still risky due to its nicotine content
There might be no tobacco found in vaporizers, but nicotine’s still present here. This chemical is the main reason why users get addicted to smoking. It is also known to bring these harmful effects to the body:
- Increases risk of cardiovascular, respiratory, and gastrointestinal disorders
- Decreased immune response
- Negative impact on the reproductive system
There’s one thing we should clear about nicotine. It’s not the main reason why lung cancer develops into a smoker’s respiratory system. Sure, there were studies connecting nicotine to causing damage to DNA which leads to lung cancer. But nicotine-only based products aren’t likely to trigger lung cancer on its own.
5. There’s the risk of metal poisoning with vaporizers
A 2018 study by Pablo Olmedo from Johns Hopkins School of Public Health’s Department of Environmental Health and Engineering discovered metals such as lead, chromium, and nickel from vapor produced by vaporizers.
A vaporizer produces vapor by transferring heat through a moving liquid, like steam. As a result, your materials, like marijuana, for example, get evenly heated and turn to vapor.
Apparently, Olmedo discovered these metals appeared due to the heating of the coils. His co-author, Ana Mary Rule, also discovered some metals in some of the liquids used for the research, even before they came in contact with the coil. They hypothesized that there are other factors at play here too, particularly the voltage used for the process.
But here’s the thing: you’ll only be exposed to these heavy metals if you use substandard or fake vaporizers bought from unauthorized vaporizer sellers or shops. You can avoid this by purchasing your vaporizer from known brands or from authorized sellers like Magic Vaporizers.
6. You increase your chance to develop cardiovascular diseases when you use vaporizers everyday
Smoking one cigarette per day increases your risk of heart disease. This is due to the ultrafine particles present in a cigarette stick, which can enter our system when we inhale cigarette smoke. When these enter the bloodstream, that’s where you begin to experience inflammation to your heart and circulation system.
Apparently, there’s research saying that vaping can also introduce the same particles to our system. Another study discovered that using vaporizers every day had higher risks of experiencing a heart attack than those who vape from time to time.
Use vaporizers at your own risk
Vaporizers are not 100% safe, but with fewer chemicals present in them, they’re proving to be a better alternative for smoking.
The research on vaporizers is still in its infancy. The best way to find the truth about its safety is to keep an eye out for more studies proving this in the future. That, and to maintain responsibility when using these devices.