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October 09, 2019

7 Signs Your Teen is Vaping

Sophia L. Thomas DNP, FNP-BC, PPCNP-BC, FNAP, FAANP

One in four teens vape, and a large percentage of their parents have no idea. E-cigarettes containing nicotine (and sometimes other drugs) have swept high schools and even middle schools to become the risk behavior of choice, and our youngest generation is paying the price. So far, 12 people have died and more than 800 cases of lung illness have been traced to vaping, and another three million teens are being subjected to mood and impulse control problems because their developing brains can’t process nicotine. If you’re not sure whether your teen is vaping, here’s what to look for:

  1. Sweet smell. Vaping juices come in kid-friendly flavors like fruit punch.
  2. Increased thirst. Vaping is hydroscopic, which means it causes dehydration.
  3. A love of salt and spicy foods. Vaping interferes with the ability to taste.
  4. Nosebleeds. Vaping causes dryness in the nose.
  5. Irritability. Changes in behavior can indicate nicotine withdrawal.
  6. Caffeine overload. Vaping on top of caffeine can cause mood swings and anxiety.
  7. Pneumonia. Vaping causes inflammation in the lungs, which can lead to infection.

If you suspect your teen is vaping, have them talk with their health care provider about the health risks!