New Way Teens Using E-Cigarettes Could Harm Their Heath

Posted February 08, 2017

The research states that one in four teens who vape have used e-cigarettes for a different objective than what they were intended for: making them create thicker clouds of vapor to give a strong throat sensation and intensify the flavors.

"E-cigarettes are also being used for 'dripping, ' which involves vaporizing the e-liquid at high temperatures by dripping a couple of drops of e-liquid directly onto an atomizer's coil and then immediately inhaling the vapor that is produced", Dr. Suchitra Krishnan-Sarin of Yale University and colleagues reported in the journal Pediatrics. Standard use is to inhale vapors from the mouthpiece of the electronic cigarette.

Sixty-four per cent of the surveyed high school teens revealed that used dripping to get thicker smoke, 39 per cent said they did so for getting better flavor and 28 per cent said they did that for the stronger throat hit or sensation.

While there is no proof that it causes any additional health risks, it may expose users to higher levels of toxic chemicals.

Though some respondents did not answer all the questions, 1,874 students reported having tried an e-cigarette.

"The teen brain has been shown especially sensitive to nicotine", Krishnan-Sarin said.

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E-cigarettes are often touted as safer alternatives to cigarettes but they've also been tied to a spike in poisonings.

The researchers asked only whether the students had tried dripping, though, not whether the dripping was habitual, an area of study Krishnan-Sarin noted needed more research. It can be done by modifying traditional e-cigarettes or purchasing special ones.

The risks of short term and long term use of e-cigarettes are not known.

The researchers did not assess whether the students added nicotine to the e-liquids used for dripping, or how frequently e-cigarettes were used for dripping.

Story called e-cigarettes an adult product but said he would rather see a teenager use an e-cigarette than a traditional cigarette.

The FDA recently implemented a ban on the sale of e-cigarettes to young people under 18 years of age. He said the industry does need rules and regulations, but he believes vaping can help combat conventional tobacco use with a less harmful alternative.