Are E-cigarettes Health Friendly?
North South University students have shown concern regarding the growingculture of E-cigarettes vaping in Bangladesh. As part of their assignment of GED course, Introduction to Public Health (PBH 101), the students were assigned to present their poster and thoughts in respect to this issue.
Their concern is reflected throughout the column. Smoking is undoubtedly prevalent in our country and this has recently been replaced with some e-cigarettes and vaping materials that do not produce smoke but do not define ultimate benefit to human body.
Fahim Ibne Omar spoke about the research studies that talk about the liquid also known as E-liquid is used in e-cigarettes containing nicotine and other chemicals mostly propylene glycol and vegetable glycerin, flavorings like cinnamon and some e-juices which can really harm human body when regularly inhaled.
The consequences can lead to dizziness, dry Mouth and skin Issues, insomnia, confusion, concentration loss, learning problems, self-control loss, poor attention, mood disorders, skin inflammation and abnormal skin cell growth. Another team member Fahim Shahriyar highlighted that that high-voltage e-cigarettes have more formaldehyde and other toxins than standard e-cigarettes which can irritate the airways in our lungs. He also states that there is evolving evidence about the health risks of e-cigarettes on the lungs-including irreversible lung damage and lung disease.
One chemical in some e-cigarette flavorings is a buttery-flavored one called diacetyl which is linked to a serious lung disease called bronchiolitis obliterans, also known as popcorn lung. One of the particular dangers of popcorn lung is that popcorn lung symptoms look indistinguishable from lots of other lung diseases, like asthma or bronchiolitis obliterans organizing pneumonia. Popcorn lung symptoms mostly include shortness of breath, wheezing, dry cough and exhaustion.
On of the team members, Fahmida Islam focused on chest pain that occur after vaping as a common consequence of excessive e-cigarette vaping and the pain is more when the vaperbreathes deep followed by pressure, discomfort or pinching sensation in chest. FarihaMoin Uddin asserted that vaping before bed is relaxing but it puts a simulant into the bloodstream. Since it contains nicotine so the effects of nicotine is similar to those caffeine. Nicotine can keep you awaken at night and It stays in our body as long as 14 hours.
Through reading several articles MD.Mahmudul Hasan found that even some 'nicotine free e-cigarette' have been found to contain nicotine. Accidental exposure to liquid from e-cig has caused acute nicotine poisoning in children and adults. He also found that formaldehydeis a cancer-causing substance that may from if e- liquid overheats or not enough liquid is reaching the heat element.
The other group member Sadia Ahmed studied that physical harms inside the body are caused by ultrafine particles, heavy metals, volatile organic compounds (eg. Benzene which are mainly found in car fumes) and flavorings like diacetyl which are burned together to cause the vapor. Fariha Hossain emphasized on the increasing risk of developing asthma caused by e-cigarette consumptionwhich also triggers the levels of asthma if a person already has it as its primary chemicals like nicotine, glycerin and propylene glycol (PG) tend to cause asthma.
Moreover, asthma attack can be caused by the smoke from e-cigarettes or by allergic reactions from the flavor that e-cigarettes contain. However, Sajid Ul Alam, another group member focused on other respiratory disease like emphysema caused by excessive e-cigarette vaping that causes shortness of breath. It is also scientifically evident that vapers have elevated levels of protease enzymes, a condition known to cause emphysema.
E-cigarettes popularity is increasing alarmingly worldwide although it cannot overlook the liability of causing health hazards. Some 30 countries over the world including the Asian region, Sri Lanka, India, and Thailand have already banned e-cigarettes. NSU undergrad students from diverse background, mostly from business, engineering and law are taking this course tiltled 'Introduction to Public Health' as part of their GED course are certainly stating their enthusiasm in contemporary public health issues assigned by their course instructor. Undoubtedly, this is an appreciable initiation.