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University of Arizona (UA) representatives are sounding an alarm over second-hand vapor.

As state lawmakers review legislation to maximize e-cigarette sales restrictions to minors, university researchers warn the released – or second-hand – vapor is not composed of “just water,” according to Arizona Public Media (AZPM).

In fact, University of California, San Francisco researchers concluded second-hand vapor contains, among other cancer-causing elements, heavy metals, nicotine and particulate matter.

A professor and interim associate dean for Research in the UA College of Nursing, Judith Gordon has experience on UA’s E-Cigarette Policy Review Taskforce and studied cessation of long-term tobacco users.

“So, it’s the same issue with second-hand smoke that second-hand vapor contains all the same chemicals as if you were vaping yourself, just as secondhand smoke contains all of the same chemicals as if you were smoking yourself,” Gordon said.

During Gordon’s studies, she determined when traditional cigarette smoke is released, it travels up and out, while e-cigarette vapor falls to the floor because it’s heavier than air. With this fact, Gordon warned families with babies and pets they could be affected by vaping, according to AZPM.

Vaping also can have an effect on individuals who suffer from allergies. A University of California, Riverside stated headaches and nausea are common side effects of vaping.

Still, between 2017 and ‘18, vaping among high school students rose 78 percent and 48 percent among middle school students, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).

“I think there’s a lot of misperceptions around vaping — that it’s harmless,” Gordon said. “And the more we learn about it and the more we know and the more that we can educate people who are vaping about the potential harms to themselves and others of the product.”

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