Anti-vaping information and resources
According to the National Institute on Drug Abuse (NIDA), vaping devices also known as e-cigarettes, e-vaporizers, or electronic nicotine delivery systems (ENDS), are battery-operated devices that people use to inhale an aerosol, which typically contains nicotine, flavorings, and other chemicals. They can resemble traditional tobacco cigarettes (cig-a-likes), cigars, or pipes, or even everyday items like pens or USB memory sticks. Other devices, such as those with refillable tanks, may look different. Regardless of their design and appearance, these devices generally operate in a similar manner and are made of similar components.
More than 460 different e-cigarette brands are currently on the market. Some common nicknames for e-cigarettes are:
- Hookah pens.
- Vape pens.
- Mods (customizable, more powerful vaporizers).
Vaping devices are popular among teens and are now the most commonly used form of nicotine among youth in the United States. Some research shows that many teens do not even realize that vaping cartridges contain nicotine, and assume the pods contain only flavoring. The easy availability of these devices, alluring advertisements, various e-liquid flavors, and the belief that they're safer than cigarettes have helped make them appealing to this age group. In addition, they are easy to hide from teachers and parents because they do not leave behind the stench of tobacco cigarettes, and are often disguised as flash drives. Further, a study of high school students found that one in four teens reported using e-cigarettes for dripping, a practice in which people produce and inhale vapors by placing e-liquid drops directly onto heated atomizer coils. Teens reported the following reasons for dripping: to create thicker vapor (63.5 percent), to improve flavors (38.7 percent), and to produce a stronger throat hit—a pleasurable feeling that the vapor creates when it causes the throat to contract (27.7 percent). More research is needed on the risks of this practice. According to the 2019 Minnesota Student Survey (MSS), e-cigarettes are used at five times the rate of conventional cigarettes.
Below are some online resources:
- For more information specific to Minnesota teens, please visit the Minnesota Department of Health website.
- For more information on vaping and various devices, please visit the NIDA website.
- For accurate, up-to-date information on the vaping epidemic, visit the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) website.
As a district, we will continue to educate, inform, and support students and families about the vaping challenges our teens are facing as well as other issues and challenges surrounding substance use/misuse. If you have questions, comments, and/or concerns about your child, please reach out to their school nurse, school counselor, or contact Colleen O'Neil, Anoka-Hennepin's chemical health prevention specialist, at 763-506-1145 or email@example.com.