Vaping Sets Up Teenagers for Serious Illnesses

The effect of vaping on teenagers’ lungs is in the news. And the news is pretty shocking. Colorado, Utah, Wisconsin, Illinois, and Oregon are just some of the states that have reported teens hospitalized with serious respiratory illnesses. At least four other states have reported vaping-related deaths.

Lung disease that threatens a young person’s life is tragic. However, it’s not the only reason parents should be worried about this alternative to smoking.

Here’s what parents need to know about vaping:

  • The chemicals in e-cigarettes are just as toxic as in traditional cigarettes.
  • All e-cigs contain nicotine. It’s been proven to affect a teen’s attention, learning, memory, and brain development, says U.S. Surgeon General Jerome Adams.
  • E-cigarettes – also called e-cigs, e-hookahs, mods, and vape pens – also contain harmful chemicals in the form of flavorings. Vaping pods with cool flavor names like “carrot cake,” “fruit medley,” and “crème brulée” are designed to appeal to kids and get them hooked.
  • A July 2019 study at Yale University showed that e-cig users inhale harmful ingredients that aren’t even listed on the product, due to chemical reactions in the body.
  • Vaping tools can be hard to recognize. For example, the popular JUUL brand of e-cigarettes looks like a computer flash drive. Others are difficult to distinguish from pens.
  • When a teenager or young adult gets hooked on nicotine, it sets them up for years of addiction and health problems.

Dr. Craig B. Frey and Dr. Megan L. Oltmann have always been concerned about our patients who smoke. Both smoking and vaping introduce toxins into the body that damage blood vessels and nerves located far away from the heart – that is, in the feet.

So if a life-threatening respiratory disease isn’t enough to motivate parents into action, additional health issues should. We encourage parents to step in. Ask your teens if they or their friends are vaping and if they truly understand the downsides. It’s a conversation worth having. At Foot & Ankle Associates of Cleveland, our doors are always open if you’d like to continue the conversation with medical professionals. We can explain to your teen how far-reaching the effects of vaping really are. If you live in Portage, Geauga, Cuyahoga, or Summit County, call us at (440) 903-1041 or contact us online.