The Next Stage – Vaping – What Parents Should Know
Vaping is a relatively new phenomenon. Adolescents and teenagers have been aware of vaping long before their parents. As with many things, there are myths and misconceptions that adolescents have had around vaping. The number one myth is that vaping is safe. There have recently been a number of reports of vaping associated lung disease and death. The following are some important facts to know about vaping that will arm caregivers with the right information to engage in a dialogue with teens:
- Vaping was initially developed as a way for adults to stop smoking. It was a way of delivering nicotine without the other noxious substances in cigarettes. It was intended as “harm reduction.”
- Vaping is not harmless. It can lead to nicotine addiction and also can lead to failure of the electronic delivery systems with fires and explosions.
- There are a number of cartridges on the black market and these may contain a fatty substance in the delivery system. These fatty particles can deposit in the lungs and cause life threatening lung disease.
- There may be other substances in the vaping “e-cigarette” including cannabis. The use of cannabis, though legal, is worrisome for developing brains and not recommended under the age of 25.
- It is estimated that up to 23% of teens have tried vaping. This is a very high rate and worrisome given what we know now about vaping.
Open up the dialogue with your teen. Be non- judgemental but present this as scientific evidence to preserve their health. Be armed with the right information. Health Canada has an excellent resource that can be found at the following URL.
The best tool to combat this is information and dialogue!