Juul is Not Kuul!

Did you know that one Juul pod contains as much nicotine as a pack of cigarettes?

According to The Medical Minute, the weekly news feature from Penn State University’s Milton S. Hershey Medical Center, smoking a Juul can increase a person’s heart rate and blood pressure. This could potentially cause lung disease, chronic bronchitis, and insulin resistance which could lead to type 2 diabetes.

Due to the amount of people smoking these e-cigarettes, particularly the brand called Juul, popular culture has made the name into a verb, juuling.

E-cigarettes are “battery-powered devices that allow users to inhale or ‘vape’ into their lungs aerosolized liquid that contains nicotine. The devices often look like pens, USB flash drives and other everyday items.”

An article on Clear Recovery’s website states that some users of Juuls, or other e-cigarettes, also vape marijuana, liquid THC, and even harsher illegal drugs like bath salts, synthetic marijuana (spice or K2) and psychedelics. An increase in emergency room visits has correlated with the use of some of these newer, unfamiliar drugs. 

A poll was taken on Instagram to see if followers do, in fact, Juul themselves. The poll asked if respondents have ever tried a Juul. Out of 112 people, 68% of them said yes. A follow-up question asked if respondents knew the true side effects of smoking a Juul. Out of the 112 participants, only 24% said yes.

The results of this informal poll show that teens today are becoming more familiar with e-cigarettes but don’t seem to be aware of the long-term effects.  Teens indicated that they seem to be interested in the feeling of getting a quick “buzz” but not aware of the implications of smoking e-cigarettes.

Since Juuls are so new to the market, the long-term effects on society are not yet known. Research on smoking traditional cigarettes has proven that nicotine is addictive and smoking causes lung disease which can lead to cancer. Second-hand smoke has also been implicated in serious health issues.

Juuls are available widely at local convenience stores and vape shops that have popped up everywhere. The age to purchase them is 18 but many students are able to find ways to get them from friends. Students report frequent Juuling in school bathrooms.

Once, vaping was a casual thing to do at parties but it has now transitioned to an addiction for some students. This is certainly problematic for students’ finances and their health. 

Dr. Shwetha Gurram, a family medicine physician with Penn State Health  is quoted in the article, “Hazards of Juuling or Vaping” that parents should discuss with their children what juuling really is and have an honest discussion about the dangers “to counteract the messages delivered by attractive advertising, social media posts, and peer pressure.”