Chocolate. Espresso. Mango. Bubblegum. With tempting flavors and the promise of being a safer alternative to tobacco, electronic cigarette sales have gone from zero to 60 in no time flat.

Andrea Anthony, MD

Pulmonologist, Andrea Anthony, MD, with Meritas Health Pulmonary Medicine

But, buyer beware. Pulmonologist Andrea K. Anthony, MD, with Meritas Health Pulmonary Medicine, pops the hood on vaping to show it could you put on a road filled with dangerous health curves.

E-cigarettes can be a tool to help you stop smoking completely, if you have a plan in place to quit them, too. “It’s OK to use them for a couple of months,” Dr. Anthony said. “But, they are a nicotine replacement product. We know nicotine is addictive and not good for cardiovascular health.”

The convenience factor concerns Dr. Anthony. “Electronic cigarettes are always ready to use,” she said. “You don’t have to light them, and you can use them in places where smoking is banned. As a result, people use them more often, and take in more nicotine. Studies suggest they are as harmful as cigarettes in some ways.”

What You Need to Know

  • E-cigarettes contain ingredients not FDA-approved for human consumption.
  • It can be tougher to quit vaping than to quit smoking.
  • Data doesn’t yet exist to show the long-term effects vaping may have on health.

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