Vape Nation

Illustration by Amy Czachowski

With a rising number of studies being done across the United States on vaping-related deaths and illnesses, vaping of any nature is starting to receive an overwhelmingly negative reputation.

Of all the things to try to scrutinize, I feel like rejecting the abundant cotton candy and blue raspberry flavored clouds that swirl around campus is a little naive.

This is college, and out of the many addictive substances and practices that run rampant on college campuses, vaping should be the least of people’s worries.

Smoking cigarettes is a bad habit that has plagued the country for hundreds of years. According to studies done by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), as of 2019, smoking is still the leading preventable cause of death in the United States and worldwide.

That’s where vaping steps in. Vaping provides a healthier alternative to the carcinogenic killer known as cigarettes.

According to the Center on Addiction, there are some pros to vaping. One positive is that they are a safer alternative to cigarettes and can be used as a tool for long-term cigarette smokers to help ease their addiction.

The website also states that electronic cigarettes do not contain tobacco, therefore they do not contain as many toxins or carcinogens that cause lung disease and cancer in cigarette smokers. Having fewer toxins, Juuls and other e-cigarettes emit less toxic material in the aerosol.

They also appear to be less risky to smokers who have mild to moderate cases of asthma, as the clouds are made of innocent and tasty vapor.

I have also heard from friends that vaping has helped them decompress from the negative affects of mental health struggles, such as anxiety, depression and PTSD.

When addiction comes into play, such as a nicotine addiction derived from vaping, the action of vaping can leave the user feeling relaxed and calmer when they have been deprived of the chemical for too long.

Overall, vaping does not deserve the bad reputation. This has only been exacerbated recently from a study done on a very small sample of people who have developed illnesses from other underlying medical conditions on top of vaping, as reported by The Guardian.

Vaping has cut down the smoking plague that was passed on from generation to generation and is a positive comfort in many people’s lives. Vaping ultimately brings much less harmful side effects than the alternative of smoking cigarettes.

A complete ban on the widespread access of vapes sold in stores could lead to a detrimental impact on people who are addicted to vaping and could potentially switch to something more harmful and easier to obtain, like cigarettes.