You may have seen some of the headlines, particularly in the more sensationalist tabloids about a new illness that is sweeping the US vaping community. In the US so far, there have been over 450 instances of illness associated with vaping and worse still there are 6 deaths linked to it as well. So, of course, the UK papers are full of articles encouraging people to ‘Stop Vaping Now!’ We look at the facts behind the headlines.
What is the Illness?
The cases of reported illness in the US has been associated with pneumonia-like symptoms. Sufferers see a cough, fever, shortness of breath. In extreme cases this has led to respiratory collapse, this is where breathing becomes exceptionally difficult as the lungs stop working. This is obviously very serious, and when it comes to your health the approach should always be better safe than sorry. It should also be noted that just because you are seeing some of the symptoms it doesn’t mean that you have got the illness as these symptoms are associated with several common illnesses that are prevalent in society.
So, what is causing it?
Virtually all instances of the illness in the US have been associated with vapers using inferior or illicit products in their devices. The US has a much more lack set of rules when it comes to vaping products. President Trump was due to introduce legislation to regulate the production of vaping liquids and devices in 2017, however, he delayed this legislation, so it is now on the program for 2022 if he gets re-elected. This lack of legislation has been compounded with the growing legalisation of cannabis in many states. This has caused several ‘home-grown’ outfits to experiment with producing their own vaping liquids using the legally available drug. This means that if you are buying a vaping liquid from ‘a man in the street’ then you have no way of knowing what is in your product and sometimes these can be toxic oils, synthetic cannabinoids and sometimes even spice or mamba.
Will This Happen in the UK?
We the laws that are in place in the UK are much stricter. The Medicines and Healthcare Products Regulatory Agency have responsibility for regulating and overseeing all e-cigarette and vaping products that are sold in the UK. This means that every product that is legally sold in the UK must have been tested in a lab and proved to be non-harmful for sale. The UK also has the yellow card scheme which encourages those in the UK who use vaporizers to report any bad experiences so that they can be investigated. Of course, if you insist on buying illicit products, then you are at the mercy of the person selling you the substance as to what has been put in it. Therefore, we would always encourage you to buy your product from reputable sources and ensure that it has evidence of having been lab-tested. Also, make sure that your liquid was manufactured in the UK.