Health Alert: First cases of vape-related illnesses in Louisiana.

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Baton Rouge, La- He picked up his first cigarette in high school. And by the time he was eighteen, creed walters had developed a habit, smoking about a pack of cigarettes each day.

“Once you quit smoking you form a new opinion about smoking, it seems, most people do. You get to where it’s immediately kind of nasty. You kinda can feel the film nicotine I guess,” Creed Walters says.

But kicking the habit was difficult, Walters said he needed something that could help him quit. So he traded in the cigarettes for a vape.

“It’s easier to breathe. You can run farther. You can sleep better. You get sick less and when you do it’s not as long.”

Walters is part of a growing percentage of Americans making the switch from traditional cigarettes to electronic ones. But in the past two weeks, the Louisiana Department of Health reported nine cases of lung illnesses related to e-cigarettes.

“Some e-cigarettes come with a replaceable cartridge,” Dr. Moosa said. “And you can replace that with fluid from whatever component of flavor the person smoking it has a preference for.”

Dr. Abdula majid – moosa, is a pulmonologist who works with lung illnesses. He says part of the problem is the types of liquids people put inside their e-cigarettes. If you don’t check the ingredients you might end up with something that isn’t safe, especially if you have a mixture of some cannabis products and flavored nicotine.

“Particularly in the older population there are people that have a very hard time quitting cigarettes,”Moosa said.
“You’d rather they smoke an e cigarette than smoke a real cigarette. But what we’re seeing now is a lot of kids, a lot of teens who’ve never smoked at all picking up e-cigarettes and that’s the public health concern.”

Ultimately, Moosa says not smoking at all is the best way to stay healthy. But if you do decide to start smoking e-cigarettes, beware of the risks and make sure to check the labels.

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