Last month the U.S Food and Drug Administration launched a crackdown on the sale of e-cigarette vaping devices and is ratcheting up pressure on e-cigarette makers. The industry is now facing new challenges as the federal, state, and local governments take new measures to put it under control. With the Arizona Senate race heating up between Republican frontrunner Martha McSally and her democrat opponent; the next Senator from Arizona will be asked to weigh in on the regulations facing a growing industry that affects the potential health of millions of Arizona citizens.
According to the CDC, smoking causes more than 500,000 deaths annually and leads to a plethora of preventable diseases. Since e-cigarettes provide users the ability to control their nicotine consumption, it helps traditional cigarette smokers to gradually kick their nicotine addiction. E-liquids come in varying levels of nicotine, including zero. This can be particularly helpful for long-time smokers who wish to use vapor products to reduce their dependence and transition away from nicotine entirely. These products are specifically designed for adult smokers who wish to live a healthier lifestyle by quitting cigarettes.
Vapor products do not burn tobacco and do not produce smoke, tar, or ash. They only emit vapor. As most e-liquids contain nicotine, they are considered ‘tobacco products’ and regulated as such but these products do not contain any tobacco. E-liquids are only regulated by the FDA because they contain nicotine, which is itself derived from the tobacco plant. These regulations include company registration, product registration, detailed ingredient listings, labeling restrictions, marketing restrictions, and listings of harmful and potentially harmful constituents.
Critics of e-cigarettes use misleading information and inconclusive studies to scare people from adopting the health saving benefits of switching to vaping. E-cigarettes are perhaps the most effective method for smokers to quit cigarettes. Research has shown vapor products to be at least 95% safer than smoking cigarettes. They do not cause lung cancer, emphysema, or other respiratory problems.
Our legislators need to hear our voices and seek ways to thwart government overreach into a growing industry that seeks to help people adopt healthier alternatives to smoking.