Are Their Health Benefits Of Vaping vs Smoking?
You might have heard about “vaping,” or even seen people performing the act on the street. Visually, there’s a lot of similarity between the tradition cigarette and/or cigar smoking that most people are familiar with, and vaping which is a very new development. But if they look the same, are they the same? What are the similarities? The differences? There’s a pretty big difference between these two types of chemical ingestion, and it’s time to take a closer look.
The Smoking Process
When someone smokes a cigarette, this is essentially an act of combustion. A cigarette is made up of paper wrapped around tobacco leaves, and a filter on the end. The mechanism of smoking is very simple. The cigarette is lit with a flame, thus literally burning the tobacco and paper, creating a contained burn. Smokers simply inhale the results of this burning, the fume, and in this way, bring the smoke into their lungs, and ultimately their bloodstream.
The reason they do this is because of the compound, nicotine, that naturally occurs in tobacco. While additional chemicals and preservatives are added to cigarettes via the paper, the filter, and even the drying out and processing of the tobacco leaves, it is the nicotine that has made smoking such a popular pastime for centuries.
The Vaping Process
Vaping is short for “vapor,” “vaporize” or the delivery, mechanism, “vaporizer.” Superficially, it looks just like smoking, where someone puts something to their mouth, breathes in, and something foggy/misty is exhaled. However, that’s where all the similarities end. The best vaporizer pen is an electronic and mechanical piece of equipment. A cigarette is just leaves and paper that is designed to burn down to the filter.
Where a cigarette requires burning and inhaling smoke, vaping works by applying heat—not flame—to a liquid inside a small container. By doing this, the best vaporizer pens turn that liquid into vapor or mist, and that is what is inhaled.
The single biggest difference between smoking and vaping is that vaping completely eliminates an extra chemical process, burning, from the equation. Because nothing is burned, many chemicals that are produced as a result of burning—or are required to help the burning process—are eliminated. Tar, for example, is actually a chemical side-effect of the burning of tobacco. It’s not actually present in a cigarette, but is created, and inhaled, once the burning begins. Vaping, on the other hand, has no tar taken into the lungs, because there is no flame, no burning, and thus no creation of tar.
Thanks to vaping starting off with liquid, rather than solid ingredients, the act of vaporizing liquid into an aerosol form is much safer and less toxic than the act of physically burning a leaf into fumes. This also means that many additional chemicals that are required for cigarettes, such as in the creation of the paper, the filter and the additives and preservatives to process tobacco leaves, are also not present.
It may seem like a small thing, but because vaping doesn’t require burning, it makes a huge difference between these two activities in terms of chemicals ingested into your body.