As if parents don’t have enough to worry about when it comes to their children, here’s something else to add to their list. A recent study has shown that one in five teenagers across the country has vaped in the last month — and they are increasing their usage, according to Fox News.
The study was based on over 45,000 8th-12th graders who openly admitted that they vape on a regular basis. This has alarmed members of the FDA because they nicotine present in e-cigarettes is considered harmful to developing brains and can make kids more likely to take up cigarette smoking later in life, or even serve as a gateway to other drugs.
In an effort to curb the number of teens vaping, the FDA has decided to create advertisements that will serve as deterrents to young people who find the activity cool. The only problem is that it more than likely won’t work.
Why is vaping accepted among teenagers?
When asked in the survey about what made vaping so intriguing to teens, many young people responded by saying that it was easy to hide because it’s the size of a USB thumb drive, which makes it easy to disguise. They also stated that they can do it anywhere at any time, even in their class. The survey also noted that many teens are vaping marijuana, which is also a reason for the FDA to step in and make some changes.
Teenagers are often guilty of accepting things they feel makes them look cool, rebellious, and accepting to their peers. This being the case, many researchers feel that creating adds to dissuade teens from vaping might fall flat if they are created by adults. “Teens often set the trends on what is cool or not,” said Dr. Anne Rice of the Teen Mental Health organization.
“Adults rarely, if ever, have the power to set the trend on what’s acceptable or not for teenagers. The only way this can occur is if an adult celebrity that teens respect and admire is the person telling the narrative,” Rice continued.
What can parents do?
If you suspect that your teenager is someone who vapes, do not hesitate to confront them and have an honest conversation about the dangers. Doing so without making them feel guilty, ashamed, or punished will probably serve as an opportunity for you to talk with your teen about what’s going on.
Even if you do not suspect that your teen participates in this activity, you should still have the conversation. The FDA wants parents to view vaping as serious as they might view cigarettes or marijuana use. Considering the fact that vaping has almost doubled in use among teens within the past year alone, you can’t assume that your teen is oblivious to the facts.
Now is the time to be an active participant in what your teen does when they are away. You’ll see that having a conversation with your teen now will truly make you and your teen a lot more comfortable than if you have the conversation after the fact.