The UK government is set to ban disposable vapes within just days, according to reports.
Vaping involves inhaling a vapour which is created by an electronic cigarette and typically, the liquid – also known as ‘vape juice’ – can contain nicotine and marijuana distillate or oil.
It’s a common habit amongst teenagers, which has sparked concern amongst leading paediatricians and public waste campaigners.
There are now calls for disposable devices to be made illegal on health and environmental grounds.
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It has been concluded by the government that the product is being overwhelmingly targeted at children, who are consequently becoming addicted.
Last year, child respiratory doctors criticised the government for failing to pay attention to the risks of allowing e-cigarettes to be sold in child-friendly packaging.
A government insider tells The Daily Telegraph: “Disposable vapes are almost entirely aimed at kids and they are environmentally damaging. There is a wide consensus emerging on the need to act.”
While some studies have found that vapes may be the best tool to help smokers quit the habit, other research has found that vaping has been linked to depression in teens and young adults, as per The Mirror.
Study lead Dr Teresa To, a senior scientist at The Hospital for Sick Children in Toronto, Canada, says: “Chronic stress can lead to mental health conditions such as anxiety and depression.
“It’s important for young people experiencing chronic stress to be given support early on to help them avoid resorting to unhealthy coping mechanisms like vaping or smoking.
“Vaping is not an effective way to cope with stress, but stress and anxiety can trigger vape cravings, and make it harder for a user to quit.”
Last week, it was revealed by The Guardian that a staggering five million single-use vapes are being thrown away in the UK every week.
Not-for-profit organisation Material Focus says this equates to eight vapes a second being discarded and the lithium inside the products is enough to create 5,000 electric car batteries a year.
Its executive director, Scott Butler, goes as far as saying that disposable vapes are ‘the most environmentally wasteful, damaging and dangerous consumer product ever made’.
Discarded vapes can actually pose a threat to public safety, as lithium batteries can become flammable when crushed.
A decision on whether disposable vapes will be banned in the UK will reportedly be unveiled next week as part of a consultation with the Health Department.