In previous years parents had an easy way to catch their children smoking due to the smell of the cigarette smoke. However, today the reality is that you probably won’t be able to smell or see any smoke but you may find that your child is in possession of an electronic-cigarette.
This is the latest craze known as the e-cigarettes that deliver nicotine through a heated vapor. In recent studies it has been discovered that “vaping” is increasing particularly among teenagers which has set off the alarm bells for parents and researchers all over the world.
A Yale study revealed that 1 in 4 students in high school have already tried out e-cigarettes. And another survey conducted in 2 middle schools also discovered that around 3.5% of the students have tried out e-cigarettes and many of these children who have not yet tried have stated that they have considered trying it.
One of the most recent reports states that children are a lot less scared to try out vaping, while another report has revealed under a quarter thought they would ever try out the conventional cigarettes. However, half of these say they may consider vaping. This is according to Michael Bernstein, MD who an associate director from Stamford Hospital pulmonology division in Connecticut.
The relaxed attitude of teenagers towards these types of devices can be associated with the perception relating to that e-cigarettes are safer and healthier options compared to traditional cigarettes. This is due to the fact that they were first designed in order to assist smokers in giving up the habit. While many of the experts are in agreement that electronic cigarettes are a safer option to the conventional cigarettes it doesn’t mean that they are safe.
In order to compare an E Cigerette to conventional cigarettes, it is safe to say that the conventional cigarettes deliver a multitude of cancer-causing and toxic chemicals directly into the user’s body. This includes carbon monoxide and tobacco. While vaping contains mainly nicotine which has the potential to have a negative impact on one’s cardiovascular system which often leads to heart attacks and hypertension. Due to the fact that nicotine is the substance type that gets a person addicted and then craving more, these devices are regarded as a type of “gateway drug” which opens up the potential for teenagers to start smoking conventional cigarettes into the future.
E-cigarettes are also associated with delivering nanoparticles in high doses. These very small particles are associated with triggering inflammation. It is also linked with diabetes, heart disease, stroke and asthma. This is a warning from the medical director Michael Genovese of the Sierra Tucson addiction center. Other risks relating to e-cigarettes are that they are linked with increased pneumonia rates.
Due to the fact that the electronic cigarette is still somewhat new, this industry is drastically unregulated when you compare it to the conventional tobacco products. Even though around 20 states ban selling e-cigarettes to underage minors, many do still allow these sales and children also buy online.
What really complicates matters is that it is a very difficult task to tell when a child is vaping due to the absence of smell and smoke. However, here are a few signs that parents must take note of:
The vapour from e-cigarettes is in some cases completely odourless which is a portion of their appeal. However, many of the vapours are also flavoured. This can mean that if you catch a sudden whiff of mint, bubblegum, fruit punch or other sweet smelling odours it could be a tell tale sign.
2.Pens That Are Not Actually Pens
A helpful hint for parents that they may want to know is that vaporizers and e-cigarettes can resemble many things. Some look like pens, thumb drives or a stylus. Parents should be aware of this and inspect items closer. If the item has holes on each side it is more than likely an e-cigarette device.
3.Increase In Thirst
One of the main ingredients in e-cigarettes is known as propylene glycol in the vaporized liquid. This ingredient is hygroscopic which means it holds and attracts water molecules from the surrounding environment such as the mouth. Genovese states that this ingredient potentially leaves e-cigarette users with a constant dry mouth. One of the other side effects is associated with dry skin.
The water retaining effects of the e-cigarette vapors is also associated with drying out nasal passages that can potentially lead to blood noses.
5.Suddenly Avoiding Caffeine
Certain individuals who use e-cigarettes will develop a caffeine sensitivity and avoid their usual intake of caffeine. If you find that your teenager is suddenly avoiding coffee or their favorite energy drinks, vaping may the culprit.
If you do find that your child is in fact vaping, experts suggest that parents should stress that smoking and vaping is the same thing.
Parents should go onto to let their teenagers know about the dangerous side effects of nicotine and that it is an extremely addictive substance.