Teen vaping continues to rise at an alarming rate

Twice as many high-school students used nicotine-tinged e-cigarettes in 2018 compared with the previous year

Only 1.7 percent of seniors reported misuse of Vicodin in the past year, compared to 10 percent 15 years ago.

Marijuana vaping also increased in 2018 - 13.1 per cent for 12th graders, up from 9.5 per cent previous year.

Though teenage use of traditional tobacco cigarettes has been declining, public health officials warn that increased use of vaping devices may bring its own ramifications.

The new report vindicates their fears.

These health experts grew concerned as despite the fact that Public Health England has openly endorsed e-cigarettes as smoking cessation tools, data indicated that the number of smokers switching from smoking to vaping per year, has dropped from 800,000 to 100,000. That liquid usually contains nicotine along with a mixture of chemicals and flavorings.

In vapes like the Juul, nicotine comes in "pods" or cartridges in flavors such as mango, cucumber and crème. Most devices heat a flavored nicotine solution into an inhalable vapor.

The U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) ordered online retailers to stop selling such products in September as part of a broad initiative to reduce teen vaping.

Compton said more progress is needed, however.

The FDA calls vaping a "youth epidemic". "They can do it in class if they're sneaky about it", Trina Hale, a junior student at South Charleston High School in West Virginia, told the AP. "The concern is these kids that become addicted to nicotine from vaping also may transition to tobacco smoking".

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Use of other illicit drugs among teens was flat or declined.

Still, the increase in the past year was striking.

Use of prescription opioids and tranquilisers also declined in 2018.

After alcohol, vaping is the second-most common form of substance use in the United States, the survey found.

The percentage of high school seniors who say they vaped nicotine in the past 30 days almost doubled this year, a dramatic increase that federal officials want to curb with new rules and restrictions. Also, the use of LSD, ecstasy, heroin, opioids, and tobacco is declining lately. What they know for sure is that the vaping boom among teens is on the rise. Even more worrisome, a growing body of research suggests that teens who vape are more likely to try regular cigarettes.

If vaping does lead to cigarette use among teens, that may start to show up in the survey as early as next year, he added.

Around 45.7 percent of eighth graders and 66.6 percent of 10th graders said the vaping devices are "fairly easy" or "very easy" to get, the survey said.

The federally funded survey released Monday is conducted by University of MI researchers and has been operating since 1975.

Fewer teens report binge drinking (five or more drinks in a row). The vaping boom the most significant single-year increase since the mid-1970s surge in marijuana smoking, as reported by The Associated Press.



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