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E-cigarettes, Good or Bad? Let’s #StartTalking!

National Kick Butts Day is Wednesday, March 20th, a day of activism to empower youth to stand up and speak out against Big Tobacco. In the past, the main concern was underage smoking and smokeless tobacco use but, now, it has fast become the youth e-cigarette epidemic. As parents, we should use this day as a reminder to educate ourselves about the dangers of e-cigarettes so that we can educate our kids about their dangers as well.

We should find out what exactly e-cigarettes or vape pens are; what they look like; how they work; how easy they are to hide in plain sight; why youth are drawn to their use; and their negative effects on the adolescent brain and health. 

As parents, when we begin to talk with our teens, the first thing we should make clear is that just because e-cigarettes taste sweet and fruity doesn’t mean they are less harmless than cigarettes. It is important to note that all e-cigarettes contain nicotine. In fact, when it comes to the most popular e-cigarette brand, Juul, one nicotine cartridge equals twenty cigarettes. 

Through ongoing conversations, our kids will come to understand that e-cigarettes change young brains, making teens more likely to smoke regular cigarettes; use illegal drugs; or vape marijuana. In any case, we need to make our kids understand that e-cigarette use will put them on a direct path to teen addiction, which is hard to treat and makes for a very difficult adolescence. Teens should be experiencing new things - testing the boundaries - not struggling to kick an addiction.

And we should be very cautious about other dangers that e-cigarettes pose as well, like nicotine poisoning, battery explosions & severe burns, and other life-threatening injuries. 

There’s a lot of information out there on the subject. Substance use trends can change on a monthly - and sometimes daily – basis. But knowledge is power… And if we do our best to keep up with these changing trends, we will have the power to steer our kids away from the pitfalls of childhood, nicotine addiction and on the path towards a normal, substance-free adolescence and adulthood. That’s our opinion. Share yours.

Just Say Something can help you stay ahead of the game by joining our monthly email list; following us on social media; visiting our website; or calling our office at 864-467-4099.  #StartTalking today and #JustSaySomething.

Source

Emily Harper