Vaping on the rise among teenagers in the US and Canada



A new study suggests that vaping is a new trend among teenagers in North America with more teens smoking e-cigarettes than ever before. Researchers say it’s because of the availability of vapes with high nicotine content. The study was published by the British Medical Journal. 

The study, led by David Hammond with the University of Waterloo, examined data on vaping by youths in Canada, US, and England. The study found that between 2017 and 2018, the number of teenagers who reported vaping in the past 30 days rose by 74 percent in Canada and the rise was 50 percent in the US. The number remained constant in England.

The percentage of teens in Canada who said they had vaped in the past 30 days rose from 8.4 percent in July-August 2017 to 14.1 percent in August-September 2018. This dramatic 74 percent rise in youth vaping pose serious concerns. The number rose from 11.1 percent to 16.2 percent in the US. 

The study shows data for the first time after the adoption of Bill S-5 in May 2018 which legalized nicotine in e-cigarettes in Canada. Tobacco companies have been heavily advertising their e-cigarettes brands ever since the adoption. This is possibly another cause of the rise in vaping. 23 percent of high-school students across Canada have tried a vaping product, according to Statistics Canada.

A new vaping technology started taking over the market in 2018, led by JUUL, which now has a 72 percent share in the vaping market. Companies like Arizer are also making vaping products easily available. Easy availability of vaping products is among the leading causes of the rise in youth vaping.

While JUUL says that they don’t want non-nicotine users to use their products, but is clear that it’s hard to stop youths from getting these products. 

“The vapor from these products has different chemistry that allows them to deliver very high levels of nicotine, similar to regularly smoked cigarettes,” according to Hammond. England limits the concentration of nicotine in vape products. 

Parents should be aware that these products can cause addiction among teenagers because of the nicotine content. Most teenagers are unaware of the nicotine present in these products. 

It’s true that vaping is less harmful than smoking, but this doesn’t mean that it is not dangerous for teenagers. Its usage should be avoided at all costs. 

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