Electronic cigarettes have become increasingly popular devices, especially for youth. There are safety concerns when vaping that differ from tobacco cigarettes. The Brant County Health Unit supports guidelines concerning the safe and responsible use of e-cigarettes and vaping devices.

For more information and resources about vaping, visit the links below.

Vaping refers to consuming a substance such as nicotine or cannabis by using a battery-operated device (also known as a vape). Although it’s called vaping, what is produced is not actually vapour, rather it is an aerosol that is created from a liquid solution (for example e-liquid or e-juice) heated by the device. The aerosol is inhaled through the mouth and into the lungs. E-liquids are available in different flavours mixed in a glycerol and propylene glycol solution that contain different levels of nicotine. Vaping does not require burning like cigarette smoking

Vapes are known as safer alternatives to smoking, but safe does not always mean harmless.

If you are an adult that currently smokes tobacco products, switching completely to vaping is a less damaging option than continuing to smoke. However, those who don’t already smoke, should not vape.

It is important to buy and use vaping products for both nicotine and cannabis from sources that are authorized in Canada. Modifying vaping products or using other substances that are not intended by the manufacturer can result in health and safety concerns, including serious lung damage. It is best to follow the manufacturing instructions for use and battery charging. Possible hyperlink to: Rules for selling tobacco and vapour products |

Vaping nicotine can lead to physical dependence and addiction. Vaping can expose you to chemicals that can be harmful to your health, including your airways and lungs. If you are vaping, choose products with less nicotine.

Short-term effects of vaping:

  • light-headedness
  • throat irritation
  • dizziness
  • headache
  • coughing

Long-term effects of vaping nicotine:

  • Addiction and/or dependence
  • Can harm the adolescent brain

In teens, vaping nicotine can:

  • Affect brain development, learning, memory, attention, concentration, and behaviour
  • Worsen symptoms of depression and anxiety
  •  Lead to dependance, addiction, and transition to tobacco cigarettes, at a faster rate than adults due to the developing adolescent brain

Vaping-associated lung illness (VALI):

VALI is an acute respiratory illness characterized by lung damage following personal use of certain vaping products. VALI is not an infectious disease. VALI is a serious medical condition that may require hospitalization and may sometimes require admission to an intensive care unit and respiratory support. At present, it is unknown what the long-term health impacts are for individuals with VALI and for vaping in general. Ongoing public health surveillance and further research will help refine our understanding of this severe illness.


More research is necessary, but vaping has proven to lead to negative health effects, particularly for youth and pregnant women, both short and long-term.

If you are using vaping products and find that stopping is difficult, speak to your health care provider for advice on how to stop.

  • If you smoke or vape, reach out to your health care provider for advice on how to quit.
  • If you vape to quit tobacco, and you would like to quit vaping as the next step, speak to your health care provider for advice on how to stop.
  • Store vaping products (devices, liquids, refill pods and/or cartridges) securely away from children and teens.
  • Monitor for potential symptoms associated with VALI and visit a health care provider or your nearest Emergency Department if symptoms appear.

For more tips on lowering your risk of vaping nicotine, review the Lower-Risk Nicotine Use Guidelines

Quit aids that are approved for therapeutic use or as natural health products under the Food and Drugs Act (FDA) include:

  • Nicotine replacement therapies (patch, gum, inhaler, lozenge)
  • prescription medications, and
  • natural health products like cytisine.

To date, vaping products have not been approved in Canada under the FDA, which means these products are not available by prescription from your health care provider and industry is not allowed to make any health claims, such as their ability to help people quit smoking. However, some studies suggest, that vaping nicotine may help a greater proportion of people quit smoking than nicotine replacement therapy (NRT) or counselling alone.

Under the Smoke-Free Ontario Act, 2017, it is against the law to:

  • Vape or hold an activated e-cigarette in enclosed public places and workplaces and in other areas where tobacco smoking is already banned, including public and private schools and public areas within 20 meters of school grounds, playgrounds, or the grounds of community recreational facilities. The fine for vaping in a prohibited area is $305.

Selling or supplying anyone under the age of 19 is also a violation of the Act. The fine for supplying a vapour product is $490.

For more information visit the Tobacco webpage




Visit the Tobacco webpage for more information about resources for quitting vaping or smoking