7 Risks Associated with Juul Vaping Products
Written by AskTheLawyers.com™ on behalf of Wayne D. Parsons with Wayne Parsons Law Office.
Written by AskTheLawyers.com™ on behalf of Wayne D. Parsons, a Medical Malpractice attorney based in Hawaii.
Juul is one of the most popular e-cigarette manufacturers, particularly with young and underage nicotine users. However, Juul products have come under criticism for the highly addictive amount of nicotine used in the products, potentially harmful chemicals used in their flavoring, and even their marketing strategies which have allegedly been used to specifically target young and teen vape users.
However, young vapers are not the only population at risk from the harmful effects of Juul vape products. Many long-time smokers have transitioned to vaping as vape manufacturers across the industry herald their products as a transitory tool to help people quit nicotine; unfortunately, this is rarely the case. Instead, Johns Hopkings Medicine has observed that long-time smokers and new nicotine users alike are finding themselves more addicted than ever.
7 risks associated with Juul vape products include:
- Addiction to nicotine. Nicotine addiction in itself is a serious risk for e-cigarette, vape, and traditional cigarette users. However, vape and e-cigarette users are at a higher risk of developing a severe nicotine addiction due to the amount of nicotine contained in a single vape pod. The Truth Initiative conducted research and found that one Juul vape pod contains 20 cigarettes worth of nicotine. The level of addiction this much nicotine can develop crosses from inconvenient and expensive to seriously physically damaging.
- Lung and throat injuries. A study in the New England Journal of Medicine found that lung and throat damage occurring from vaping is similar to toxic chemical exposure and toxic chemical burns. These lung and throat injuries are not only painful but can be life-threatening and cause permanent damage. These burn injuries are thought to be caused by the chemicals contained in Juul and other vape pods and can affect a user’s ability to speak, sing, and even eat in a healthy, painless manner. While vaping has not been around long enough to tell whether or not it causes lung cancer, experts think the possibility is likely considering the type of chemicals involved.
- Respiratory damage. A chronic cough or shortness of breath while using or after using Juul or another vaping product could be a sign of respiratory damage. Lipoid pneumonia, for example, can occur when a user inhales the oily substance used in vape pods, causing severe inflammation in the lungs. Ultrafine particles from the vape can also be inhaled into the lungs, and combined with dangerous chemicals found in the flavoring can result in irreversible lung damage, including obliterative bronchiolitis or “popcorn lung”.
- Collapsed lung. Cases of primary spontaneous pneumothorax, or collapsed lungs, have been occurring more and more frequently in young vapers. This occurs when air blisters on the top of the lungs rupture, making a hole in the lung and causing it to collapse. While the air blisters are not known to be caused by vaping, use of e-cigarettes and vape can cause existing blisters to rupture and the lung to collapse. A collapsed lung always requires medical treatment and can vary widely in severity.
- Brain damage. Nicotine is known to halt development in adolescent brains, according to the Centers for Disease Control (CDC). “Adolescent” for the purposes of this explanation includes users up to the age of 25. This puts young vapers at significant risk of damaging their brain in its final stage of development. The areas of the brain that can be damaged by vaping under the age of 25 control attention, learning, mood, and impulse control. This can create obstacles for adolescent vapers to succeed later in life.
- Mental health struggles. Physical health and addiction can have a significant impact on a user’s mental health. For young users, vaping has created a known distraction from schoolwork, extracurriculars, and building healthy social relationships. The highly addictive levels of nicotine contained in Juul and other vape products can make it hard to focus or care about anything other than vaping. As vape-users find themselves consistently following short of important goals and expectations due to the distraction and health problems posed by vaping, it is easier to fall into feelings of depression, hopelessness, anxiety, and dependency.
- Addictive habit-forming. Users who become addicted to nicotine earlier in life are more at risk of becoming addicted to other substances later on. This is because the mind and body form a habit of addiction, making it potentially more difficult for a user to realize they are becoming addicted to another substance until that substance has fully taken hold. It’s important to exercise caution with any potentially addictive substance, including alcohol, nicotine, and more. The amount of nicotine contained in Juul vape products compared to traditional cigarettes puts vapers at a higher risk of addiction than the average smoker.
If you or your adolescent child have suffered any of the above or additional injuries as a result of using Juul or other vaping products, it’s important to explore your options for physical and financial recovery with an experienced product liability attorney.