Every time we turn around there's some harmful trend that's taking teens by storm, and using E cigarettes and Vaping is one of them. There's a false belief that electronic cigs and vaping are a safer alternative to smoking, but that's an illusion.
E-cigarettes are small battery operated devices which make a vapor or aerosol that's inhaled. A cartridge filled with a liquid mixture is inserted into the device. The liquid mixture is a mashup of vegetable glycerin, propylene glycol, flavorings and yes often nicotine. As the liquid is heated and then cooled it becomes an aerosol to be inhaled.
[ Kids and young adults have been growing in usage rapidly; in fact according to the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA), over 3 million middle grade and high school kids are users of e cigarettes.]
Many of these vaping flavors are geared towards kids tastes with candy flavors like chocolate mint, bubble gum grape and other 'sweet' flavors. The flavorings themselves contain dangerous ingredients like formaldehyde and acetaldehyde which are known carcinogens. Two ingredients, dactyl or acetyl propionyl in these e cigs have been linked to respiratory disease when inhaled.
Now, while the concentration of these chemical compounds is lower than in actual tobacco cigarettes, but, the concentration becomes greater when the liquid is heated and becomes an aerosol. The heating of e cigarettes ( a very high temp) changes the chemical structure, and this BIG step is overlooked as being detrimental to lung health. The U.S. Surgeon General has stated that aerosol from e cigarettes have not only potentially harmful chemicals, but chemicals known to be harmful also with minute particles that can be inhaled into the lungs.
One of the biggest concerns is the unforeseen health issues this trend is setting all kids up for. Kids with asthma and other lung issues are even more vulnerable because of the toxic effects on lung function. Adolescence with asthma who vape ( e-cigs ) have greater occurrences of asthma attacks, coughing, wheezing and uncontrolled asthma than those who don't smoke. E-cigarettes aren't exactly a smart move for lung health, they are much more than simple vapor water.
Having asthma is hard enough, but with the added actions of adding foreign matter into those weakened lungs is a recipe for uncontrolled and hard to control asthma, both now and in the future. The effects of these type of products are magnified for those with asthma as any chemical irritants can trigger inflammation in the lungs.
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Furthermore, secondhand exposure to vaping could raise the chances of adolescents who have a respiratory condition. It's important to get your teen ( and younger children ) informed about vaping and its potential health risks, and for those with lung issues, help them to understand the significant risks of adding Anything other than the air that we breathe into their lungs. It's a good idea to have your teen talk to their allergist or healthcare provider to get specific information vaping can have on their health.
Many physicians believe that e- cigarettes are often a gateway to other tobacco ( and other ) drugs. The bottom line is that trendy or not, all teens and especially teens with lung issues and disease need to steer clear of vaping and e cigarettes. We live in a culture that glorifies smoking of 'anything' just for a quick high, and kids and teens are the first and easiest targets. Kids aren't shown the value of living a life of wholeness, a life lived with purpose and value and honor, of both to themselves, others and the Lord.
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