As concern over adolescent marijuana use has occupied providers and parents alike, another public health crisis has been gaining momentum: teens vaping nicotine products. According to the National Institutes of Health's (NIH) 2018 Monitoring the Future survey results, 37.3% of 12th graders and 18% of 8th graders have vaped nicotine products in the last year.
Further, the reported use of teens vaping within the past 30 days nearly doubled among high school seniors, from 11% in 2017 to 20.9% in 2018. These changes represent the biggest jumps in adolescent substance use in the four decades that the NIH has conducted its Monitoring the Future survey.
These troubling statistics lead to an important question: What can we do to prevent teen vaping?
Listen to our pediatric pulmonology experts discuss teen e-cigarette use and the teen vaping epidemic
The United States Surgeon General has classified youth vaping as an epidemic, and pediatricians in primary care practices must learn how to educate young patients and their families on the dangers of e-cigarette use. This is the topic of today's timely and fascinating episode of Charting Pediatrics. Listeners will receive practical tools to counsel patients and families, learn about upcoming advocacy and policy work pertaining to e-cigarettes and so much more.
We are joined by two child and adolescent pulmonology experts: Jennifer Woods, MD, Medical Director of the Adolescent Medicine Clinic at Children's Hospital Colorado, and Heather Hoch, MD, pediatric pulmonologist at Children's Colorado.
In today's episode, we discuss:
- Why changing teenage mindsets about the use of nicotine vaping products is so crucial
- The different terminologies teens use when describing vaping and e-cigarettes
- How marketers are attracting adolescents to e-cigarettes
- The alarming nicotine levels and harmful chemicals present in the flavored e-cigarettes
- Starting the conversation about e-cigarettes and vaping with families
- Getting involved at a local, state, and federal level to address this topic
- The forecast for policy changes regarding e-cigarettes and momentum going forward
- The importance of engaging with local opportunities for public education
- The potential risks of long-term exposure to e-cigarette chemicals
- Appropriate methods for talking to middle-schoolers about e-cigarettes
Battling the teen vaping epidemic at Children's Colorado
At Children's Colorado, our pediatric physicians and specialists take a comprehensive approach to preventing teen vaping. We work with children and their families to develop healthy habits, treat medical conditions that result from e-cigarette use and fight for policies that keep kids healthy. Refer a patient to Children's Colorado.