Keeping your kids safe -What parents should know about Vaping
Vaping has gained in popularity nationwide among teens and unfortunately, it is a trend we are seeing with our Tahoe Truckee youth as well.
Vaping (inhaling an aerosol through an e-cigarette or similar device) is a significant health concern because the vapor can contain harmful chemicals, heavy metals, or substances known to cause addiction. Many teens have misconceptions of what e-cigarettes contain and think they are just inhaling “harmless water vapor.” What you and your teens need to know is that e-cigarette aerosol contains varying amounts of toxic chemicals such as acetaldehyde, toluene, cadmium, benzene, formaldehyde, nicotine, lead and more! These are chemicals have been linked to cancer, heart disease, and respiratory disease.
What do E-cigarettes look like?
An e-cigarette is a battery-powered device with a mouthpiece, a cartridge for the “e-liquid” or “e-juice,” and a heating component which turns the e-liquid into an aerosol. This liquid is what is inhaled into the lungs and then exhaled.
There is a fairly new e-cigarette device called the “Juul” vaporizer that looks like a small USB flash drive and can be charged while plugged into a laptop. (Students refer to using this device as “juuling.”) The Juul is small enough to fit inside a student’s enclosed hand and does not emit any odor, so it’s easily concealable from adults and simple to use for teens. Also, the pods used with the Juul come in kid-friendly flavors such as strawberry, mango, fruit medley, and mint flavors - all flavors that might appear harmless. However, one Juul pod contains as much nicotine as one pack of cigarettes. Even more concerning is that the Juul device can be used with marijuana and the Juul is easy to purchase online without age verification. Locally, these can be purchased over the counter at convenience stores.
Please stay vigilant about the dangers vaping presents to our youth. It is important that we work together to protect our students and keep them safe.
More information and resources on Vaping:
California Department of Public Health http://stillblowingsmoke.org/
Office of the U.S. Surgeon General https://e-cigarettes.surgeongeneral.gov/
U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) https://www.cdc.gov/tobacco/basic_information/e-cigarettes/index.htm
Information on JUUL .
Presentation by TT-FWDD to Parents on Keeping Kids Safe