Here we go people: more health effects of vaping are starting to emerge and a new study has found a link between the lolly sticks and tooth decay and cavities.
Researchers in the United States reviewed more than 13,000 patients’ dental records and found people who said they vaped were at a significantly higher risk of tooth decay and cavities than people who said they didn’t. It’s early days, but this is actually the second US study to find a link between vapes and cavities.
“We stumbled upon this [potential link] by accident and then the more we learned about it, the more we thought, ‘OK, this could be a bad thing,'” Karina Irusa from Tufts University who led the study said.
Since vapes took off in the mainstream around 2019 their popularity has ballooned.
In Victoria, 15.2 per cent of young women aged between 18 and 24 reported vaping regularly according to a report published in October 2022. That’s up from just 2 per cent in 2019.
But despite the exposition of the number of vapers out there, there has been very little research into the effects. This is because research takes time and so far not enough people have been vaping longterm for the effects to be evident.
To put this into perspective, people have been smoking tobacco for centuries and it was first *suspected* as a cause of lung tumours in 1898. Studies into the effects began in the early 20th century but doctors kept prescribing cigarettes as treatments for a number of ailments for decades. In the 1960s a poll revealed that 43 per cent of American doctors were still smoking cigarettes on a regular basis. It wasn’t until enough people had died from lung cancer that the link between cigarette smoke and lung cancer became a widely accepted fact. So it could be years before we really know the effects of vaping.
Early studies into vaping have concluded people who vape are at a higher risk of seizures and lung damage. An Australian report published in April also found vape smoke (it’s not just vapour, sorry) increased the risk of multiple, terrible health outcomes like seizures, lung injury and of course addiction, which is no fun at all.
“Nicotine is a key ingredient and one of the most addictive substances known,” lead author of the report Emily Banks said at the time.
“Young non-smokers who vape are around three times as likely to take up smoking than non-vapers.”
I for one cannot afford to go to the dentist regularly so wish me luck on my quitting journey.