Posted by: richarlm | September 19, 2018

Teens, Vaping and E-cigarettes

Man Vaping

Image courtesy http://www.ecigclick.co.uk/

The following is a transcript of a House Calls question from Chronic Illness Care: Principles and Practice, YOUR HEALTH Radio September 15, 2018

House Calls Question: A few weeks ago, I happened to see my nephew hanging out with some friends and they were all vaping. I have a feeling that my brother has no idea that my nephew has tried this. Is vaping habit-forming and should I talk to my nephew or my brother about what I saw?

Adam Goldstein: The vaping police. This is a real important question and it’s one that Laurel and I actually deal with daily through the work we do with adolescents and adults who are using electronic cigarettes or vaping other products.

Laurel Sisler: Yeah and it’s on the rise. Vaping and electronic cigarette use is rapidly increasing among our young teenagers and young adults. It’s an important topic. A couple of things I think of, and you probably have some to add, Adam, is A, if they’re vaping they may also be experimenting with cigarette use which we know is very harmful. That vaping in and of itself can be, if it has nicotine, which the vast majority of them do, can be really damaging to the adolescent brain. So those are some of the concerns that I have right off the bat.

Adam Goldstein: I think kids will not necessarily believe that vaping is harmful. Whether it’s less harmful than cigarette smoking really isn’t the question because for a lot of them, it may be a gateway, as you indicated, Laurel, to using combustible tobacco or they may put marijuana in as a vaping, or they may even be vaping opiates and that becomes a whole different issue. There are toxic metals that they are going to be exposed to. There are burns that they can be exposed to; the batteries from these products. There’s a whole host of things and we just don’t know. The biggest thing is really talk with them talk with the child, let them know the data . Open up the conversation. I think it’s an open conversation, it’s not a police conversation. We don’t want to criminalize this habit. We do want to let the kids know and the nephew know that this could be the prelude to a nicotine addiction. Not a good thing is it?

Laurel Sisler: No and I agree. Have an open conversation and asking questions, getting them to think about the potential risks and starting the conversation that way.

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