Fact vs. Fiction: Is Vaping THC Dangerous?

Marketed as a safer alternative to smoking traditional tobacco cigarettes, vaping has grown in popularity in recent years. Its users include people who want to break their addiction to tobacco and teenagers and young adults attracted by the cool-looking vaping devices and the availability of vaping products in candy, fruit, and a variety of other flavors. With an expanding user base, the vaping industry is now worth over $15 billion worldwide.

At the same time, it has been facing mounting criticism from the U.S. mainstream media and many U.S. health organizations for the increasing incidences of lung-related ailments and deaths arising from the frequent and prolonged use of THC vaping products. According to the detractors, vaping with THC oil is almost as harmful to your health as smoking traditional tobacco cigarettes. Is that the complete factual truth, though? Let us find out if the danger of THC vaping is fact or fiction.

What is Tetrahydrocannabinol (THC)?

Tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) is a cannabinoid found in cannabis products. While it exists in both marijuana and hemp, it is more prevalent in marijuana. It impacts the neurotransmitters in your brain and gives you the euphoric high commonly associated with marijuana. THC can also affect your mood, pain threshold, and other feelings.

Vaping products contain THC oils, together with glycerin, propylene glycol, and flavoring chemicals like cinnamaldehyde, eucalyptol, diacetyl, and pulegone.

The vaping process involves heating the THC oil, the base liquids, and the chemical flavoring in an e-cigarette, vaping pen, or other vaporizing devices. You can then inhale and exhale the resulting vapors.

Fiction: Many people have died from vaping THC

You may have come across news media accounts of people dying or developing lung-related ailments after vaping THC. These incidents, as you might imagine, have had a deleterious effect on the vaping industry.

Fact: Vitamin E acetate is the culprit, not THC

The health issues that some people have suffered after THC vaping have often resulted from modifying the vaping device and vaping liquid. People may experiment with vaping or buy vape cartridges from the black market without ascertaining their contents. If the cartridges contain harmful chemicals like vitamin E acetate and you use them, they will interfere with the normal functioning of your lungs and cause harm.

If you purchase THC products from a state-licensed dispensary, however, you will get strictly regulated and safe vaping products that do not contain vitamin E acetate. They will only contain FDA-approved ingredients used in regular vaping liquids. That, however, cannot be said to be entirely safe.

The issue here is that while some of these base liquids and the chemical flavoring have FDA approval for ingestion, the FDA hasn’t green-lighted them for inhalation. There is no adequate research on either their safety or their dangers.

The FDA’s stance on the matter

After receiving many reports of lung injuries and deaths arising from THC vaping, the FDA has worked with the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) to spread public awareness of the dangers of THC vaping.

According to the FDA, THC is a psychoactive component of the marijuana plant. The agency has recommended that the public stop using vaping products containing THC. It advises people to be particularly cautious about purchasing vaping products containing THC from illicit or unknown sources off the street or unknown online sources. It also warns the public against modifying or adding THC or other oils to the vaping products you buy from retail establishments.

Furthermore, the FDA advises against the use of vaping products by young adults and pregnant women. The agency recommends that people seek immediate medical attention if they experience any difficulties in breathing after vaping.

The CDC’s stance on the matter

The CDC echoes the FDA’s concern about the outbreak of lung illnesses due to THC vaping. Based on that, it recommends that people stop using THC vaping products. It stipulates that vitamin E acetate not be added to any vaping products and that people should stop altering vaping substances in ways not intended by the product manufacturers. It advises against the frequent and prolonged use of THC vaping products.

Ultimately, it is up to you to do your research and use safe vaping products.

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