Public Health Emerging Issues – August 21, 2019

Ready to talk with your kids about vaping? We can help!

SEVERE LUNG ILLNESS POSSIBLY LINKED TO VAPING 

  • More than 120 possible cases of severe lung illness associated with vaping have been reported in 15 states between June 28, 2019, and August 19, 2019.
  • The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) is investigating the illnesses along with states where illnesses have occurred.
  • Some cases in each of the states are similar and appear to be linked to e-cigarette product use. However, more information is needed to determine what is causing the illnesses according to the CDC.
  • Many e-cigarettes contain nicotine, which is highly addictive.  Users of these products are more likely to go on to use traditional tobacco products.  
  • The use of e-cigarettes is unsafe for kids, teens, and young adults.  We know nicotine impacts brain development, which, continues into a person’s mid-20s. 
  • The aerosol from e-cigarettes can contain chemicals that can be inhaled deep within the lungs. Severe health effects from smoking take decades to be visible. Since these products have not been used that long, the long term impacts are not yet fully understood.
  • In 2018 more than 3.6 million U.S. middle and high school students said they had used e-cigarettes in the past 30 days, according to the CDC.
    • In Mesa County:
      • About half (48.7%) of high school students report having tried vaping.
      • Nearly a third (30.7%) say they currently use the products.
      • Electronic vapor products are the second most commonly tried substance by high school students.
      • 88% of high school students perceive smoking cigarettes as risky.  Only 45% think vape products are harmful.
  • Mesa County Public Health (MCPH) works to reduce tobacco and e-cigarette use in our community through the support of Tobacco-Free Schools, increased public awareness and utilization of evidence-based tobacco cessation services, education about the adverse health effects of tobacco products, policy recommendations and more.

RESOURCES FOR PARENTS


Tobaccofreeco.org has videos, facts, and tips for parents who want to talk to their teens about vaping.

This tip sheet can be beneficial in starting the conversation.


Other useful information:

MCPH Special Report on Tobacco Use in Mesa County

Local Resources to Help You Quit

D51 Healthy Schools: Let’s Clear the Air

CDC:  About Electronic Cigarettes

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