Across Canada, 20 percent of youth between the ages of 15 and 19 report having tried e-cigarettes. A tobacco-like product emerging in popularity, e-cigarettes are battery-operated devices that have cartridges with liquid chemicals in them. Heat from a battery powered atomizer turns the chemicals into vapour that’s inhaled, which is commonly referred to as vaping.
There are no standards or labeling requirements for vapes. This makes it hard to know exactly what is in the liquid. Because chemicals in the cartridges can vary, it’s hard to know what users and people nearby are breathing in. What we do know is vapour has been found to have toxic chemicals and cancer-causing agents. And even though it is illegal in Canada to sell vapes or liquids that have nicotine, tests done by Health Canada found about half of vape liquids that were labeled “nicotine-free” actually contained nicotine.
What do you need to know?
- Nicotine can affect brain development in teens. Learning the negative effects early could make the difference
- Some e-cigarettes have candy flavouring, which could make them appealing to someone who has not smoked before, especially teens
- E-cigarettes do not leave a smell like tobacco
- e-cigarettes may contain nicotine which is highly addictive
- Learn as much as you can about e-cigarettes
- Vaping can cause a dry cough, as well as mouth and throat irritation