Here we discuss the potential dangers of vaping CBD oil. Most users assume vaping is a healthier option than smoking, but is this true? Learn the truth. Vaping CBD is legal in the UK, and we're here to address your safety concerns. Research tells us that compliant CBD Oil Vape Pens and CBD oils are safe to use. Furthermore, discover the safest way to vape CBD Oil and some of the benefits of vaping. Vaping CBD oil is common, especially after claims about its medicinal properties. But, is it true? Sort out the facts about CBD oil and its safety.
The Dangers of Vaping with a CBD Oil Pen
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Vaping can be a very effective means of consuming CBD. However, a lot of CBD vape users don’t realize that not all products out there are created equal.
On the contrary, one has to choose their brands and cartridges very carefully. This is necessary to ensure that you’re getting a quality, effective, and most importantly, safe product that’s free of contaminants and other health hazards.
In this article, we point out some of the biggest dangers of vaping that you need to be on the lookout for. Given the current lack of regulations in the cannabis industry, a lot of companies out there are producing cartridges with virtually no regard for health or safety.
So, we’re here to try and make sure you know what to look for when choosing the best CBD vape juice for your specific condition.
Cuticle Wax in CBD Vape Liquid: What You Should Know
One of the lesser talked about aspects of CBD vaping safety is the potential respiratory hazard of cuticle wax. Cuticle waxes are basically the oily, fatty outer layer of lipids that cover the surface of most flowering cannabis plants, including hemp.
When these plants are smoked (with a bowl, joint, bong, etc.), the wax layer is burned away. This method of consumption isn’t believed to cause much concern in terms of respiratory health.
However, it’s known that because vaping incorporates significantly lower temperatures than smoking, it does not burn away the wax layer. Instead, it’s believed that the oily, waxy bits may collect together and eventually settle in the lungs, which may produce serious long-term health concerns.
In fact, as part of a statement to Rolling Stone magazine in October 2017, experts at Steep Hill Labs spoke of the potential dangers of vaping CBD oil. Steep Hill is an independent cannabis analysis company with several locations across the U.S. They suggested that vaping CBD oil may potentially cause these waxes to collect in the lungs and form solidified granulomas at some point down the road.
While this is no more than speculation at this point (there haven’t been any clinical studies to verify whether or not this is the case), it’s cause for concern.
In terms of what you can do to avoid CBD vape oils that have cuticle waxes, you can look for products that have undergone a process called winterization. Winterization of CBD oil is a technique that involves removing all (or at least a portion of) the waxes, fatty acids, and lipids, which have higher melting points than other parts of the plant.
If you’re unsure whether or not a specific CBD vape juice has undergone winterization, call the company and ask them. If they can’t tell you, then steer clear and look for another brand.
Thinning Agents in CBD Vape Oil: Another Potential Health Concern
A much more talked about safety concern of CBD vape oils that’s discussed far more often than cuticle waxes, is the potential presence of harsh chemicals that end up in the end product as thinning agent residues.
Raw cannabis oil that contains active CBD extract is much too viscous, or thick, to be used in vape pens with electric heater coils. Thus, the concentrate has to be treated in order to reduce the viscosity so that it can be effectively and efficiently vaped.
Cannabis oil is too thick for vaping. Manufacturers must thin them before use, and some use dangerous chemicals.
There are a few different ways in which this can be done. However, you need to be extremely wary as many cheap products (produced by inexperienced manufacturers) use harsh and even toxic chemical thinning agents in order to cut costs.
Two of the most commonly used chemical thinning agents are propylene glycol and polyethylene glycol. Both of these chemicals (propylene glycol and polyethylene glycol) can potentially break down into carcinogenic (cancer-causing) compounds like formaldehyde and acetaldehyde. This is particularly true when they’re sublimated in high-temp vape pen cartridges.
And lastly, a 2010 study published in the International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health found that inhaling propylene glycol – even in low concentrations – can potentially induce asthma, allergic reactions, and other respiratory complications.
Is CBD Vape Safe for the Lungs?
As mentioned above, the use of thinning agents and the presence of cuticle waxes in vape oils can be dangerous.
Vape e-liquids are vaporized and inhaled through the lungs, meaning they can cause problems for the respiratory system. Concerns such as asthma and lipoid pneumonia, all lung-related issues, still plague the industry.
Common indicators of lung or respiratory irritation can include:
- Constant coughing
- Shortness of breath
- Discomfort while breathing
- Coughing up mucus or blood
If you experience any of these symptoms while or after vaping, it’s important to stop immediately and visit a healthcare provider.
So, is CBD vape safe for lungs? Not always, but luckily for vape enthusiasts, there are ways to severely reduce the risk of lung irritation and discomfort. Find out more below.
How to Vape CBD Safely: What Can You Do?
Ultimately, one of the most important things you can do to ensure your health and safety when vaping CBD is to invest in a high-quality vape pen. It’s being suggested more and more that the temperature of your pen’s heater coil is critical in terms of producing efficient vaporization that avoids the breakdown of thinning agents into carcinogens such as formaldehyde.
A lot of vape pens out there use e-coils that sublimate the oil at extremely high temperatures – far higher than what’s even remotely necessary.
As Dr. Jahan Marcu, Chief Scientific Officer at Americans for Safe Access, puts it, “the market is flooded [right now] with substandard products that have questionable safety… these companies are [ultimately] doing their safety testing on the public and their loved ones.”
And that’s likely putting it nicely.
We put together an article not too long ago on some of the best CBD liquids for vaping. It also discussed the differences between CBD vape liquid and regular CBD oil. That may be a good place to start in terms of picking out the best CBD vape cartridge that’s best suited to you and your needs.
Is It Safe to Vape CBD Oil?
Despite the health worries, vaping CBD still remains a popular method of consumption. Why?
Some research suggests that vaping increases the bioavailability of CBD when compared to other methods such as oral or topical use. This means that a higher concentration of the cannabinoid can reach the endocannabinoid system, causing a greater impact.
Additionally, the marketplace is full of flavored vape oils and impressive vaporization systems, making the physical act of vaping an enjoyable experience.
But this still begs the question; is it safe to vape CBD oil?
Research into the long-term effects of vape use is still very much in its infancy; this means it’s very difficult to surmise just how safe it is.
However, by seeking out high-quality e-liquids, users can still have an enjoyable vaping experience while trying to minimize the risk.
Final Thoughts on the Dangers of Vaping CBD
Like we mentioned, one of the most important things you can likely do in terms of making sure you’re maximizing health and safety while vaping CBD is to invest in a high-quality pen. This is particularly true if you’re vaping often, such as to provide relief from chronic conditions like pain, anxiety, depression, or insomnia.
The fact of the matter is that very little is actually known in regard to the long-term health effects of CBD vape juice. Much more certainly needs to be done in order to learn about potential respiratory complications and other health concerns that may arise further down the road.
For the time being, all you can do is know the contents of your CBD e-liquid, know how it was manufactured, and ensure that you buy from a well-known and reliable company.
Is Using A CBD Oil Vape Pen Safe?
You’ve probably seen some headlines that talk about vaping negatively. That’s why you’re here. You want to know if using CBD oil vape pens is safe. What most of the research is telling us is that it is. The issues that have come up with vaping usually have to do with low-quality products with ingredients that can be dangerous for your health.
CBD oil overall is considered to be safe. The World Health Organization released a report saying that CBD is ‘well-tolerated and safe for human consumption’ and that it’s not found to be addictive to humans.
We’re going to go over the safest way to vape CBD oil and some of the benefits of choosing to do it that way.
CBD Oil with Unsafe Ingredients
One of the main issues that the Centre for Disease Control (CDC) found as the primary cause of the health risks with vaping products was the use of vitamin E acetate. Vitamin E acetate is something that is used as an additive to dilute the oil used in vaping and on its own doesn’t usually cause harm. But the CDC found that when it’s heated up and inhaled, it can ‘interfere with normal lung functioning.’
Beyond vitamin E acetate, the addition of certain solvents in CBD vape oil has the potential to be dangerous as well. Some of the most popular ones are propylene glycol (PG), polyethene glycol (PEG) and vegetable glycerin (VG) that is used to thin the CBD vape oil.
The trouble with these comes when you heat propylene glycol and polyethene glycol between 243 o celcius and 248 o celcius. When propylene glycol is heated, it can create formaldehyde and other carcinogenic compounds. Polyethene glycol heated up also produces formaldehyde and acetaldehyde. The amount of formaldehyde produced by heating it can be comparable to inhaling a cigarette. This can cause respiratory issues like asthma, and they have been linked to certain kinds of cancer. It was also found in a study to cause the death of cells in the brains of mice.
Amphora uses CBD distillate with added terpenes for our vape oil, which is organic. We don’t use any types of solvents or carrier oils in our products. With CBD distillate, you get the best elements of the whole cannabis plant and added terpenes, which have many wellness benefits on their own.
Certificate of Analysis is Crucial
If you want to make sure the CBD inhale product you’re using is safe, you need to find the certificate of analysis (COA). A COA tells you that you’re getting what the brand says is in their CBD oil, and it has been certified by a third-party.
These certificates should be readily available to you. Please don’t mess with brands that don’t have them. At Amphora, our certificates of analysis are easy to find on our website.
CBD Oil Is Non-Psychoactive
Another common concern about the safety of vaping CBD oil is that you might get ‘high’ off of it. This is one of the biggest misconceptions most people have about vaping CBD. Getting ‘high’ won’t happen with CBD oil. CBD is non-psychoactive, unlike its cannabinoid cousin THC. Cannabis is listed as a controlled drug in the Misuse of Drugs Act, but CBD is not. CBD oil is legal in the UK, but the THC content must be below 0.2% for the product to be compliant.
Pros of Vaping
Vaping is one of the fastest-acting options for taking CBD. That’s all thanks to its bioavailability. Bioavailability just means the degree and rate that CBD gets absorbed into your bloodstream. We want CBD to reach our bloodstream fast so it can start working with the endocannabinoid system that helps our body maintain balance or homeostasis.
Eating edibles or capsules would have a low bioavailability because it has to go through your digestive system and has to be broken down by your liver before it enters the bloodstream. The upside to this way of taking CBD though is that it will last longer. When you inhale, the vapour goes into your lungs and rapidly enters your bloodstream.
Convenient and Discrete
One of the best things about vaping is the ease of it. Vaporizers have been designed to be discrete and can be stored in a carrying case, purse or backpack. You can also easily order them online. With so many options out there, you can find the type of vaporizer that works best for you.
Other Ways to Take CBD
If vaping isn’t your thing, then there are still lots of ways you can take CBD.
CBD Edibles and Capsules
CBD can be mixed with a bunch of different foods, but the most common are sweets such as gummies or lollipops. They also can come in capsules that you can swallow. When you take CBD orally, it passes through the digestive tract and is eventually metabolized by the liver where the CBD is broken down even more. Because of this process, it takes longer to be released into your bloodstream so the effects can take anywhere from 30 to 180 minutes, but the results will last longer.
These types of products usually come in the form of creams, lotions or balms that are applied directly to the skin where you’re experiencing an issue. This isn’t bioavailability but rather more of a localized effect. How fast it takes depends on how well it penetrates your skin so it could be anywhere from 30 – 120 minutes. This way of taking it is usually used for people who suffer from pain or inflammation.
Sublingual Tincture is CBD oil that comes in a bottle and allows you to put a few drops under your tongue. It’s a popular way to take CBD. Even though you’re putting it in your mouth, it doesn’t have to go through your digestive system. There are glands under your tongue that will absorb the oil if you leave it there for about a minute. Meaning it goes into your bloodstream quicker and you’ll feel the results faster. The only downside is that it may not last as long as when you eat an edible or capsule.
Vaping can be a great way to enjoy all of the benefits of CBD, but it’s essential to do your research. Make sure you’re using a brand you trust, and that is transparent about the ingredients they’re using in their CBD vape oil products. Then you know you can vape without worry.
Written by | Infused Amphora Team
The Infused Amphora Team is dedicated to creating resources to educate and engage consumers on the growing evidence of CBD benefits and the extensive health and wellness properties of CBD Oil.
Contributor | Angus Taylor CEO
Infused Amphora “Learn” is intended for informational purposes only and is NOT a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis or treatment.
Everything You Need to Know About Vaping CBD Oil
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Vaping has been around for more than a decade now and is growing in popularity—especially among teens and young adults. One of the newest trends impacting this growing vape culture is the desire to vape cannabidiol (CBD) oil. In fact, using this oil in vape pens is becoming increasingly popular and the industry is expected to grow exponentially over the next few years according to the Brightfield Group, a firm that studies the CBD market.
Part of the draw to CBD oil in areas where marijuana has been legalized is the fact that it has been touted as helping treat a host of medical problems. Some of the medical issues people claim that the oil treats include epileptic seizures, anxiety, inflammation, and sleeplessness. However, there is very little evidence backing up these claims with the exception of treating epilepsy.
In fact, the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has approved only one CBD-based medication, which is used to treat seizures associated with two severe forms of epilepsy. But, when it comes to CBD in general, they stress that it cannot be added to food, drinks, or dietary supplements. And although the FDA has warned manufacturers against making unproven health claims, it has not done much to stop the sale of CBD products.
What Is CBD Oil?
CBD oil is extracted from the flowers and buds of marijuana or hemp plants. Typically, it does not produce a “high” or intoxication because it contains very little, if any, tetrahydrocannabinol (THC). In fact, CBD oil is only permitted to contain less than 0.3% of THC oil. CBD oil is legal in states where medicinal or recreational marijuana is legal. Meanwhile, several other states have CBD-specific laws on the books even though marijuana is not yet legal there.
According to the FDA, it is currently illegal to market CBD by adding it to food or marketing it as a supplement. Despite these guidelines, they warn consumers that some CBD products are being marketed with unproven medical claims and are of unknown quality. They also caution consumers that CBD can harm the liver and may interact with other medications you are taking. And, it may even have a negative impact on male fertility.
Is Vaping CBD Oil Safe?
Generally speaking, vaping is an unsafe practice regardless of what substances are in the vape pen. And, CBD oil is no exception. In fact, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) has recently linked vaping products to an outbreak of nearly 3,000 lung illnesses that were so serious that even young people were being admitted to the hospital. Meanwhile, nearly 70 people have died from what is now being called EVALI (e-cigarette and vaping associated lung injury). And, the CDC believes thousands more may have admitted to the hospital with lung issues related to vaping.
Although the CDC has traced many of the EVALI hospitalizations back to vitamin E acetate, a substance used to dilute oils used in vaping, the risks of vaping CBD oil are not without risk, especially if the vape pens are obtained from illicit dealers, online sources, or friends. At least 26 of the EVALI cases were hospitalized after vaping CBD oil.
Additionally, numerous scientists, doctors, and researchers are concerned with the safety of inhaling CBD oil because little is known about the long-term effects. What’s more, when vaping devices are heated, a chemical reaction takes place in the vapor, which could pose additional risks to the lungs, especially in young people.
And despite the fact that the 2018 Farm Bill removed CBD from the definition of marijuana in the Controlled Substances Act, it is still subject to the same laws and regulations as other substances monitored by the FDA. Unfortunately, though, there is very little regulatory oversight of CBD oil in general—even though vaping is one of the most popular ways of using the oil. In fact, the FDA has not yet determined how to regulate CBD vaping products just yet.
But many people are hoping those regulations will happen soon. Even the CBD industry is concerned and asking for oversight. For instance, without more regulations, organizations like the U.S. Hemp Authority are unable to certify CBD oils as it does with CBD topicals, tinctures, and edibles. And, until that happens, consumers have very little way of knowing what they are getting when they purchase a CBD oil.
To make matters worse, this lack of certification has lead people to sell vaping liquid they claim contains CBD oil when it actually contains harmful chemicals, which is injuring and killing people in the process. To determine the extent to which this is occurring, the Associated Press (AP) commissioned a study to analyze the contents of nearly 30 oils claiming to contain CBD.
Their testing was completed by Flora Research Laboratories in Grants Pass, Oregon, which is licensed and inspected by the U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration. What they discovered is that 10 of the 30 vapes contained synthetic marijuana while others had no CBD oil at all. Additionally, eight oils had no detectable level of CBD while 14 were less than 0.3% CBD by weight. The other six ranged between 1.07% and 8.87% CBD by weight.
Because this testing was a such a small sample, the AP noted that their sampling is not representative of the entire CBD market. However, their testing does show just how risky it is to vape CBD oil when there is little to no regulation of the product. Vapers have no idea what they are getting when they take a puff.
A Word From Verywell
If you are considering vaping CBD oil as a way to address a medical concern, talk to your doctor first. The risks associated with vaping and CBD oil are significant and may not provide the benefits you want.
And if you or a loved one are struggling with substance use or addiction, contact the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA) National Helpline at 1-800-662-4357 for information on support and treatment facilities in your area. For more mental health resources, see Verywell’s National Helpline Database.
Verywell Mind uses only high-quality sources, including peer-reviewed studies, to support the facts within our articles. Read our editorial process to learn more about how we fact-check and keep our content accurate, reliable, and trustworthy.