09 Nov Vaping and Your Brain
Vaping is harmful to the brain in at least three distinct ways.
Vaping devices release brain damaging toxins.
In a 2018 study, Johns Hopkins scientists reported on their findings. After investigating more than fifty devices, they detected dangerous levels of several toxic metals. Many vaping devices produced vapor that contained lead, which causes brain damage.
Vaping interferes with proper maturation of the adolescent brain.
The part of the brain that is responsible for decision making and impulse control is not fully developed until the age of twenty five. Young people are thus uniquely at risk for long-term, long-lasting effects caused by exposing their developing brains to nicotine. Nicotine alters the manner by which synapses are formed. Thus, vaping may harm the parts of the brain that control attention and learning. Vaping may also cause mood disorders and irreversible lowering of impulse control.
Vaping damages brain stem cells
In 2019, University of California researchers reported on their study of neural stem cells. The scientists discovered that the mitochondria of stem cells were particularly sensitive to the effects of vaping. Vapers inhale the fumes, which can travel through the olfactory tracts to reach the brain.
Injury to stem cells diminish the brain’s ability to repair damage for the remainder of a person’s life. Vaping may, in this manner, lead to an acceleration of the aging process and make the brain more susceptible to neurodegenerative diseases.