MSU students develop product to help people quit vaping
Students in the state of Michigan who have trouble quitting vaping might be in luck.
According to the National Institute on Drug Abuse, electronic cigarettes or electronic cigarettes, also known as vaping devices, or “vapes,” are “battery-operated devices that people use to inhale an aerosol, which usually contains nicotine (but not always), flavors and other chemicals. “
Brendan Wang, director of supply chain management and co-founder and CEO of CAPNOS, struggled with a vaping addiction for five years. He started vaping his first year of high school. Wang was simply following an activity in which all of his surrounding peers were participating.
It wasn’t until his first year of college that he began to see it as a real addiction.
“It’s just something that I just did that I haven’t really thought too much about,” Wang said. “I didn’t really mean to quit, but when I became more aware of it, I thought to myself: Could I have stopped? ‘”
By committing to better understand his habit cycles and through research in behavioral psychology, Wang developed the idea of CAPNOS Zero.
The CAPNOS Zero is a smoke-free, charge-free, nicotine-free pressurized air inhaler designed to function as a behavior aid. Every inspiration feels like hitting a vape, but it’s just puffs of flavored air.
Wang has surveyed thousands of vapers and found that two in three e-cigarette users suffer from behavioral addictions rather than nicotine addictions.
“We vape so often and develop a tolerance for nicotine, so we no longer get that feeling of satisfaction with every puff,” Wang said. “At this point it has evolved into oral fixation, or behavioral addiction, where the addiction is the just desire to hit something.
There are products that treat nicotine addiction, like nicotine-free patches and even vapes. Yet few products have been created to eliminate smoke, combustion, and nicotine – essentially, all of the negative health consequences.
CAPNOS, as a company with a mission, strives to prevent lung disease and save lives above all else.
When CAPNOS first launched in late 2019, news of sudden vaping deaths was everywhere.
“I realized that this is a much, much bigger problem than I had really anticipated, and that it results in the deaths of people,” Wang said. “I want to prevent this and try to prevent more deaths from vaping and even smoking, which remains one of the leading causes of death in the world.
CAPNOS wants to end smoking, but focuses on vaping because of its importance on college campuses.
“We are targeting the vaping epidemic first simply because it is so close to many college campuses and many people we are personally close to,” said Jake Roach, CFO and co-founder of CAPNOS.
In a survey by The State News of 33 MSU students, 94% of students vape, 65% of students who vape would like to quit, and 80% of students who vape are concerned about the health effects.
“(CAPNOS Zero) gives you the same satisfaction and (a) the same usefulness as what you already do, but it doesn’t give you the negative health consequences.” Roach said. “You save your health and probably add a few more years to your life. “
The CAPNOS Zero retails for $ 19.99 with a pack of two replacement caps at $ 9.99.
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As Wang is passionate about sustainability, the product also seeks to offset waste – waste so common in disposable vapers spread across campus.
The CAPNOS base is designed to last forever and users should replace the caps every 3-4 weeks. The device and its packaging are recyclable.
According to the CAPNOS website, the CAPNOS Zero helped testers reduce their vaping by 50%, with some managing to quit altogether.
“A friend of mine, who is part of a fraternity here at MSU, said he wears the Zero in his front pocket and his vape in his back pocket, and at a social event, only hit the CAPNOS Zero, ”Wang said. “Our goal is to be able to replicate this with others as well, and to see that more people are able to achieve this sense of balance.”
The company is still in its early stages, completing its first launch at the end of September. However, Wang and Roach have lofty goals for his future.
In December, the CAPNOS Zero will be available on Amazon as well as other retail stores. They will also be listed on the Quit Vaping app, which allows vapers to track their shots and money spent vaping.
They hope to partner with health insurance providers to help provide more people with an affordable and accessible product and to develop plans with stop vaping programs.
They also hope to increase the sustainability of the company by moving towards the use of biodegradable materials.
“Our customers, who we do everything for, you know, they’re our backbone for the business,” Wang said. “I just want to make sure it exists and that we continue to do our best to try to meet or exceed those expectations.”
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