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What are the risks and side effects of JUUL (e-cigarettes)?

A JUUL is a type of e-cigarette or vape pen that has risen to prominence primarily because of its high power and discrete appearance. Juuling can cause a variety of side effects, including coughing, headache, and a sore throat. Longer term use also has similar health issues.

JUULs and other vape pens are less dangerous than cigarettes, but individuals should be mindful that they bear their own risks with these products. Nicotine and many other chemicals are also found in them, which means they are not a healthier alternative to cigarettes.

Keep reading, including the related dangers and side effects, to learn more about JUULs.

What is a JUUL?

JUUL e- cigarette

A JUUL is a type of e-cigarette which, without using fire and smoke, delivers nicotine to the lungs. The device looks very similar to a pen or USB flash drive and is long and slender.

Vaping devices such as JUULs include a heating element and a liquid source, called vape juice, which contains nicotine, as with other e-cigarettes.

JUUL is actually the name of unique e-cigarette products developed by JUUL Laboratories, although several individuals now use the term in reference to the vape pens of other manufacturers.

The vape juice is vaporized by triggering the device, supplying the nicotine as vapor to the lungs when the person inhales.

E-cigarette risks and side effects

Burning a cigarette and inhaling the smoke adds numerous chemicals and compounds to the lungs and bloodstream, increasing a person’s risk for a variety of health problems.

E-cigarettes fully eliminate this smoke, delivering vaporized nicotine through a heating element instead. Vaporizing the e-cigarette vape juice compounds, however, can carry its own side effects and health risks.

Common side effects

Side effects from the use of e-cigarettes are common. Using e-cigarettes, JUULs, or other devices with vaporizers may cause:

When a person first begins using vape items, these side effects may be more frequent, and they may go away with time. If the person stops using vape devices, they will also go away.

Particles Ultrafine

Vaporizing e-cigarette juice produces very tiny particles and aerosols that are vaporized. These ultrafine particles, including the smallest airways, called bronchioles, may reach deep into the lungs.

Particles in these bronchioles, leading to scarring of these tissues, can cause damage and inflammation.

In addition , a study in Pediatrics states that these ultrafine particles may find their way into the circulatory system, possibly causing cardiovascular disease and inflammation.

Other nicotine use

Using e-cigarettes does not guarantee that cigarettes will not be used by an individual. In certain cases, nonsmokers and young people might potentially use e-cigarettes to lead them to use other items, such as cigarettes.

Smoking other products in the body can result in even more nicotine, making it more difficult to quit any type of the drug.

Long-term risks

Vape devices are relatively new and it is still hard to grasp the long-term dangers. The body is exposed to many potentially harmful substances by e-cigarettes and vaping products, and long-term exposure to these substances can bring its own risks.

The potential dangers of long-term exposure to these substances include the following:

  • respiratory issues
  • damage to the lung tissue
  • reproductive issues
  • circulatory issues

However, there is still too little study to make any broad statements when it comes to linking e-cigarettes directly to long-term risk.

Other risks

E-cigarettes also expose the body to nicotine, which is a substance that is addictive. In addition, the Department of Health and Human Services states that there are other dangerous compounds in the liquid juice that the person inhales into his or her lungs, such as:

  • volatile organic compounds
  • heavy metals, such as tin, lead, and nickel
  • natural and artificial flavorants that may contain harmful ingredients
  • carbonyl compounds

How is a JUUL different?

While products branded by JUUL and similar devices can feel different from larger vape pens or other devices, they function in much the same way. A heating element heats the vape juice until it vaporizes, and this vapor is inhaled into the lungs by the person.

Vape pens, like JUULs, are more discreet compared to other options. They create minimal vapor, and the vapor that the person exhales evaporates and disappears rapidly.

Often, the devices themselves are more discrete. In a pocket or purse, a person can easily conceal a JUUL, and it looks identical to a pen or flash drive.

Owing to their convenient access to numerous flavors and solutions, Vape pens and JUULs are also distinct. Other devices may require a person to mix their own solution or refill the device as the solution runs out.

Cartridges or pods that connect to the device in seconds are supported by Vape pens and JUULs.

JUUL devices contain a patented mix of nicotine salts rather than free nicotine, mimicking the feeling of using tobacco.

JUUL risks and side effects

JUUL has various health risks and side effects, as with other e-cigarettes and vape pens, including:

Overuse and high nicotine

JUUL products and other vape pens have a risk for abuse and overuse. A 5 percent nicotine-containing JUUL pod is equivalent to one pack of cigarettes. Less nicotine is offered by several other companies and vape juices, as they are made for people trying to wean themselves off tobacco.

When selecting these vape pens over other e-cigarettes, frequent JUUL users can expose themselves to much higher nicotine levels.

The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) states that individuals who use these vape pens may become addicted quicker than individuals who smoke cigarettes.

Nicotine toxicity and seizures

High nicotine levels in JUUL pens can also, with daily usage, increase the risk of nicotine toxicity. Serious health effects, such as seizures and neurological disorders, can result from this toxicity. Vape pen use has been related to many cases of seizures by the FDA.

Teen use

Specifically, JUUL items often tend to appeal to young teens. The reasons for this may include the discreet nature of the device, the pleasant taste, and the high potency that contributes to a “high.”

The FDA warned Juul Labs in 2019 about their ads, which included youth outreach and other practices aimed at young adolescents, including the promotion of enticing flavors such as mango and fruit medley.

The company also made false claims that, without presenting any evidence for this assertion, their product was a healthier alternative to cigarettes.

In recent years, the use of vape pens by teens has increased. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) states that e-cigarette use rose from 1.5 percent in 2011 to more than 20 percent in 2018 among high school students. This figure went from 0.6 percent to 4.9 percent during the same time for middle-school students.

The use of nicotine products by teens can be particularly harmful. Nicotine can rapidly lead to addiction in a developing brain. In addition, nicotine can damage the brain growth of the adolescent.

Addiction and nicotine use may also lead to changes in behavior, reduced impulse control, or mood fluctuations.


There is no absolutely safe method of intake of nicotine.

Originally, e-cigarettes were intended by manufacturers to help smokers wean themselves from the use of nicotine and tobacco. The premise was that these devices would help the user quit by using far lower levels of nicotine while offering a similar experience to smoking.

Nowadays, products are a common alternative to smoking, but they are not risk-free.

Those trying to quit smoking or vape devices can begin to wean themselves off the habit by using vape juice with lower nicotine levels.

Other nicotine products can provide an option to help a person quit, such as patches and gums.

When to see a doctor

Anyone trying to cope with nicotine use should see a doctor. They might be able to provide more guidance on how to immediately wean the body off nicotine or leave.

Anyone noticing symptoms, such as constant cough or trouble breathing, should also see a doctor for a diagnosis after using JUUL pens.


An alternative to smoking is JUUL pens. They are not healthy, even though they remove combustion and tobacco, since they still deliver large levels of nicotine.

These devices provide an addictive substance, and both short-term and long-term side effects and risks are associated with them. It will take time to conduct direct research into the long-term consequences of using JUUL.

Anyone who is worried about their symptoms or potential addiction to nicotine may want to talk to a doctor.