Thursday, 17 January, 2019

Vaping among teens on the rise, according to study

Teen vaping continues to rise while other drug use declines, survey finds Vaping among teens on the rise, according to study
Johnnie Parks | 19 December, 2018, 21:26

Researchers at the University of MI in Ann Arbor, who conducted the annual survey, asked 44,482 students from 392 private and public schools across the country about their use of tobacco, opioids, marijuana and alcohol.

According to a new survey, the number of high school students that use nicotine-tinged electronic cigarettes nearly doubled in 2018 in comparison with 2017.

However, marijuana use remains steady among high schoolers, with almost 6 percent of 12th graders reporting daily use. Last year, the annual survey found that prevalence of vaping was 13.3% among eighth-graders, 23.9% among 10th-graders and 27.8% among 12th-graders.

Federal officials called the rise in vaping alarming. Early exposure to nicotine can alter the development of young brains, making teens more vulnerable to addiction throughout their lives, Compton said.

These health experts grew concerned as despite the fact that Public Health England has openly endorsed e-cigarettes as smoking cessation tools, data indicated that the number of smokers switching from smoking to vaping per year, has dropped from 800,000 to 100,000. Under it, officials plan to distribute anti-vaping materials to high schools, such as posters that will be put in public school bathrooms.

The survey has tracked drug, alcohol and cigarette use among teens since 1975.

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The survey also found a significant jump in the perceived availability of e-cigarettes.

It seems e-cigs may have distracted teens from tobacco products, at least for now, with just 3.6 percent of high school seniors smoking every day, down from 22.4 percent two decades ago. New numbers from a study funded by the government show vaping has doubled among high-schoolers this year compared to last.

Use of other illicit drugs - including cocaine, methamphetamine, heroin, ecstasy and hallucinogens - did not change substantially in the past year, according to the survey results. Even more worrisome, a growing body of research suggests that teens who vape are more likely to try regular cigarettes.

The government's top doctor is taking aim at the best-selling electronic cigarette brand in the USA, urging swift action to prevent Juul and similar vaping brands from addicting millions of teenagers. Other e-cigarettes use "e-juice" or nicotine liquids that not only come in appealing flavors but are often packaged to look like candy. "The consumer doesn't always know that, so they may not be aware that they're using nicotine when they're using this product".

Compton said more progress is needed, however.

"This increase was driven exclusively by nicotine vaping, given that the use of each of the other six nicotine products declined", the researchers wrote in the New England Journal of Medicine. Fewer teens reported binge drinking (five or more drinks in a row).

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