Vaping / E-Cigarettes / Juuls

What is it? How do they work?

Vapes, e-cigarettes, and Juuls are all common terms for Electronic Nicotine Delivery Systems, or E.N.D.S. for short. These products are battery powered devices that heat a solution of liquid, creating an aerosolized emission, which is then inhaled. The liquid, often called e-juice or e-liquid, contains many chemicals and compounds like nicotine, propylene glycol, cadmium (battery acid), vegetable glycerin, as well as many others. The process of the e-liquid being heated and aerosolized causes chemical reactions to take place that create new products, not originally in the e-liquid. Juul is the most popular brand of vape products in the United States.

These products are not regulated by the FDA, which means there are no safety standards when it comes to the ingredients in the e-liquids, or the devices themselves. Ingredients can be left off ingredient lists on packaging, so there is no way to know for sure what you are putting in your body when you vape. In addition, the devices have been known to malfunction, causing many issues. For example, the device can leak the e-liquid, which can damage the skin if it comes into contact. They can improperly aerosolize the e-liquid causing users to inhale oils, which is extremely damaging to the lungs. These malfunctions can even cause dangerous explosions. At least two people have died as a result of e-cigarette explosions.

Myths vs Truths

Myth: Vapes and e-cigarettes are safe products to use.

Truth: Because they operate without burning, e-cigarettes and vapes do not produce the tars or other carcinogens that make combustible cigarettes so hazardous to health. However, this does not mean they are safe products. There is much that is not known about the long term effects of vaping. More long-term research is needed before decisive conclusions can be made.

Myth: Vaping is a good way to quit cigarettes.

Truth: Vaping and e-cigarettes are not an approved quit method by the FDA. Nicotine patches and lozenges, other nicotine replacement therapy, as well as medications like Chantix and Welbutrin are all FDA approved cessation products. All FDA approved cessation aids are covered by Medicaid and most other insurances cover some or all of them. Contact a Doctor or call the free New York State Smoker’s Quitline at 1-866-NY-QUITS (1-866-697-8487) for more information about quit techniques and support.

Myth: E-liquid does not contain nicotine.

Truth: 95% of all e-liquid contains nicotine, and 100% of Juul pods contain nicotine.

Myth: “It’s just water vapor”

Truth: Despite the name, vapes (and e-cigarettes) do not emit water vapor. The e-liquid is heated and forms an aerosol, which is then inhaled. Aerosols are a mixture of liquid chemicals suspended in a gas; vapor is gaseous water.

Product Examples

  • Juul – The most popular vape brand on the market. Juuling has become synonymous with vaping. They are discreet, sleek, and high tech, and can be customized with many accessories like JuulWraps.
  • Juul compatible pods – Many manufacturers make pods that are compatible with the Juul device. These pods often have much higher nicotine contents, and come in a much wider variety of flavors.
  • Copycat Juul products – With the popularity of Juul came multiple devices from other companies that mimic the size and shape of the Juul device.
  • Suorin – A brand of small, high powered e-cigarettes that come in many shapes. The Suorin Drop is small enough to fit in the palm of your hand, and the Suorin Air is about the size of a deck of cards.
  • Blu – A brand of traditional looking e-cigarettes that are long and skinny, like a pen.
  • Vaprwear – A clothing and accessory brand made with hidden pockets and mouthpieces that allow users to vape discreetly.

Tobacco-Free Action

  • Vapes and e-cigarettes are different names for the same products. Both refer to products that heat a solution of liquid chemicals, called e-juice, creating an aerosol, which is then inhaled. Juul is the most popular brand of this vape/e-cigarette.
  • E-juice contains nicotine 95% of the time, and 100% of Juul pods contain nicotine.
  • Nicotine is an extremely addictive substance.
  • Nicotine can change the way the brain develops, affecting attention, learning and memory, as well as causing behavioral changes, worsening anxiety, irritability and impulsivity.
  • There are no regulations on the amount of nicotine that can be in e-liquids, so vapes and e-cigarettes often have significantly higher doses of nicotine than combustible cigarettes.
  • Nicotine is poisonous, and can cause symptoms such as headaches, nausea, stroke, and can be fatal.
  • Truth Initiative has a text to quit program designed specifically for teens and young adults who want to quit vaping. To access the free program, This is Quitting, text DITCHJUUL to 88709.
  • The NYS Quitline has recently expanded their services to start assisting New Yorkers who want to quit using vapes/e-cigarettes. They have also started to provide counseling and quit help to individuals under the age of 18. Call the quit line at 1-866-NY-QUITS (1-866-697-8487).