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Is It Safe to Vape Around Children?

E-cigarettes have become increasingly popular in recent years, partly because they’re perceived by many to be harmless to your health, but nothing could be further from the truth. Unlike traditional cigarettes that emit an offensive odor, electronic cigarettes are nearly odorless and can be inhaled in different flavors, like strawberry and vanilla — a large part of what makes them appealing to kids.

Vapping

Children as young as 11 are becoming addicted to the high levels of nicotine found in e-cigarettes, but that’s far from being the only issue linked to the popular product. Many parents are vaping around their children, unaware of the serious health risks.

A recent study shows only one in five parents who use e-cigarettes have rules against vaping in their homes and cars, and parents who smoke and vape at home are more likely to enforce a smoke-free policy at home, compared to a vape-free policy. The product is largely misrepresented as being safe — most people think e-cigarettes emit a water vapor. The truth is, they don’t contain any water at all.

E-cigarettes contain a sticky substance that gets turned into an ultrafine aerosol with tiny particles that get inhaled deep into the lungs. The aerosol contains very high amounts of nicotine, which is quite obviously not safe for children. Along with nicotine, e-cigarettes contain some of the most carcinogenic substances known, including tobacco-specific nitrosamines and toxic heavy metals that leak from the heating coils.

Children can easily get nicotine into their system from a parent who is vaping around them, by inhaling the aerosol, ingesting the nicotine and other toxic compounds or by absorbing it directly through their skin. Nicotine can wreak havoc on the body, especially when developing brains and lungs are exposed to it. Nicotine exposure during adolescence has been linked to an increased risk of developing psychiatric disorders and cognitive impairment later on in life, including attention deficits. Children exposed to nicotine at home may also respond more dramatically when they vape or use tobacco products themselves, increasing their chances of addiction.

The bottom line: E-cigarettes are dangerous for kids of all ages, and parents who vape should follow a strict vape-free policy for their homes and cars. Better yet, stop vaping altogether.

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