There is now a growing wave of municipalities considering banning vaping devices. Vaping emerged several years ago as an alternative to smoking. Many people were quick to abandon traditional cigarettes in favor of vape pens. As more research is conducted and information is made public, there is a growing concern for the harm the devices can cause. The consideration for cities like LA banning vaping devices is beginning to sound like a smart move.
E-cigarettes became a global trend. By 2018 the vaping industry exploded into a global business valued at over $14 billion. (1) More staggering is that figure is expected to surpass $23 billion by 2022. But vaping’s growth may come at the cost of people’s health and possibly their lives.
Vaping Is Dangerous
Contrary to what the ads tell you, vaping is not safer than smoking. While e-cigarettes do not have as many toxic chemicals as traditional nicotine, vaping still poses an enormous risk of lung injury and death. As of November 2019, there have been 47 known vaping deaths from related lung injuries. (2) Vaping products, especially those that are off-brand (and hence unregulated), pose extreme hazards to users.
The greatest risk comes from modified or off-market vaping products containing tetrahydrocannabinol (THC). THC is the primary psychoactive component in marijuana. Many THC e-cigarettes contain Vitamin E acetate. This is a thickening agent that causes fat particles to be inhaled into the lungs. It is known the act of vaping is dangerous in and of itself. Add in the increasing number of THC-based e-cigarettes and similar products – especially those marketed to teens – and the risk of injury, sickness, or death becomes a major threat. Banning vaping devices may be one of our only options in protecting our youth.
California Says No to Vaping
Los Angeles is contemplating banning vaping devices and all e-cigarettes and vaping products (3). They would be banned until they have been tested and approved for use by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA). If the proposal is approved, the sale of all vaping products and equipment will be illegal.
Councilman Paul Koretz described vaping injuries and deaths as a “public health emergency.” He is calling for the city of Los Angeles and the entire state of California to act. Currently, the advertising money promoting vaping is outweighing public scrutiny. Until the public is willing to bring up the dangers of vaping, more people are going to die.
Teen smoking is on the rise. This fact alone places the entire country’s youth at risk. A study by the University of Michigan revealed that 1 in 4 high school seniors had used an e-cigarette within the last month. Proactively, Los Angeles County has already placed a ban on flavored e-cigarettes like Juuls.
Juuls’ marketing specifically targets teen smokers and young adults. But it doesn’t just stop in California. President Trump also called for a ban on flavored e-cigarettes. Reducing access to products may not stop everyone from vaping, but a public ban could lay the groundwork for important conversations parents need to have with their children.
Vaping and Addicting
Just like smoking, alcohol, and drugs, people can become addicted to vaping. Nicotine, the main component of e-cigarettes, is what makes traditional cigarettes addictive. Manufacturers know this. Rather than showcase the risk of addiction their products pose; they deceive audiences by advertising “fun” flavors and promoting life-threatening habits.
Getting help for a vape addiction now could also help prevent addiction to even more dangerous drugs down the line. If you feel like you or someone you love wants to quit smoking but can’t, you may benefit from attending LA rehab. Contact your local hospital or speak with one of our professionals at Ocean Hills Recovery today.
About the author:
Nicole earned her doctoral degree in Psychology with an emphasis on marriage and family therapy at California School of Professional Psychology. Her doctoral thesis was a grounded theory study exploring the role of alienation and connectedness in the life course of addiction. She specializes in treating addiction and trauma. She is certified in DBT and EMDR, two of the most highly regarded evidence-based methods in psychotherapy. Dr. Doss is a strong LGBT advocate and provides open and affirming support to her LGBT clients.
Dr. Doss’s earlier education included graduating cum laude from the University of California, Irvine in June of 2007 with a Bachelor’s degree in Psychology. While there, she received honors recognition by Psi Chi and Golden Key honor societies.
Nicole has been working with alcoholics and addicts in our California drug and alcohol rehab center as an advisor and counselor for many years. She is passionate about providing quality counseling and care to her clients. Her main focus is on integrating the 12 Step and disease models of addiction with experiential therapeutic theory. She is married to Greg; they have two adorable sons together and an energetic yellow Labrador Retriever.