Danger In a Colorful Disguise

By Angelina Odger, Stella Regan, and Angelena Sheridan
DEC. 16, 2019

Vaping is a new and dangerous trend that unfortunately has become popular among teens, according to a number of sources, including the MayoClinic.org. One of the biggest appeals of electronic cigarettes is the variety of colors and flavors that companies offer. STIG, a popular e-cigarette brand, sells a flavor called “Mango Bomb,” which is described on their website as “sweet, juicy and tangy citrusy mango with a cool menthol finish.” The description makes the e-cigarette sound like it’s candy. This is just one of the many examples where nicotine products are advertised to be made more appealing and eye catching for young audiences.

St. Thomas Aquinas High School’s (STA) nurse Mrs. Maureen Scanlon told the Raider Review that she believes vaping has become a significant problem due to peer pressure, the addictive substances in these products, and the fact that the marketing campaigns target younger people. 

 It may not seem scary on paper, but there are many real-life experiences that highlight the negative effects on young people. Reporter Erika Edwards of  NBC News recently explained, “A Canadian teen developed a dangerous vaping illness that doesn’t look like lung illnesses seen in patients across the U.S.” She also reported that he was heavily vaping during the months prior to his diagnosis. The 17-year-old said that “The products came with different flavors: green apple, dew mountain, and cotton candy.” His illness almost resulted in his requiring a double lung transplant, instead he has to live with chronic lung damage.

The byproducts of vaping nicotine can be extremely damaging to one’s immune system. Nurse Scanlon says that “The side effects can range from dry mouth, cough, dizziness, allergies, chest pain, trouble breathing, increased blood pressure, increased pulse, difficulty with attention, irritability, aggression, and addiction.” Though these are several common side effects, they aren’t the only ones that are known. According to a study published in The New England Journal of Medicine some patients reported side effects such as nausea and abdominal pain. 

Evidence indicates that mainly young people are being convinced to buy these vapes. While teens may not find vaping to be a serious problem, it is crucial that they become aware of the long-term and harmful side-effects.