Saturday, May 18, 2024

Vaping harms young adults 

 

By Victoria Campbell

According to the CDC, there were 2,807 hospitalizations in 2020 from use of e-cigarettes.

 

Vaping continues to influence young adults, specifically college students, which can cause irreversible damage. Vaping nowadays is not abnormal, as they have become the cigarettes of the century.

 JUUL, an electronic cigarette brand, was founded in 2015, and it became a social influence in the high school and college environment. 

Most young adults are impressionable, and for JUUL, this was an opportunity to aim their product at students. This specific brand targeted high school students claiming that the product was safer than cigarettes, reported NBC News. 

While not all people use specifically JUUL, vapes and electronic cigarettes have become a more apparent part of  students’ lives.

College students tend to be more influenced to participate in vaping and those types of activities. High school students have also fallen victim to the consequences of vaping and using e-cigarettes.  

Mollie McKenna, a SUNY Plattsburgh student, was an active user of vapes throughout her senior year of high school. 

She knew the consequences it could cause, but continued to use it to fit social standards. So many students tend to try vaping and drugs to fit in socially, regardless of if they think it’s a good idea or good for their health. Roughly 2.13 million students use nicotine products as of 2023.

As a college student, fully understanding how vaping can not only impact health, but one’s academic career, is crucial. 

Vaping can not only cause a long-term addiction to nicotine, but it can also impair the growth of neurons in the brain and harm parts of the brain. 

Academics are a crucial part of college, and vaping takes away from that. It can impact one’s learning and memory by fueling one’s need for nicotine.

While most students know the health risks, several ignore them because they want to fit in. This pressure to conform is what drives many to begin vaping.

McKenna knew that vaping could mess up your lungs through inhaling metal and plastic particles, but continued to vape.

Most young adults can be easily convinced, and do not realize when a small habit can lead to an addiction. The fabulous flavors, attractive packaging and easy charging are used to lure young adults into picking up this habit.

Vaping even once can lead to issues further than health. Financially, these habits can rob one’s pockets.

“I spent $1,560 within one year of vaping my senior year,” McKenna said. “I quit cold turkey. The habit was too expensive to maintain.”

McKenna not only experienced the financial burden of vaping, but she experienced awful withdrawals once quitting.

“My withdrawals would cause migraines, anxiety. No, I would not recommend others to start vaping,” McKenna said.

McKenna vaped for only a year, and her withdrawals were not only intense but also caused her to get anxiety. 

Smoking for longer and more frequently could cause a worse withdrawal period and side effects. When going through withdrawals, 61.1% of smokers experience withdrawal symptoms. 

Vaping and smoking are not worth the unknown and known dangers of these addictive, harmful chemicals. 

Most active users do not think they are addicted, until quitting comes into reality. Which is why quitting becomes such a hard thing to do.

Young adults tend to struggle with the reality that they are not immune to illness or failure, which vaping can cause both.

 Vaping can lead to addiction, and the cost and health concerns it brings can negatively impact one’s life, as it did for McKenna. She dealt with the consequences and had to push through her habit. 

 

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