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Teens with friends who vape

Over the years, vaping has gained a more positive norm than smoking among teens. Many teens believe vaping is less harmful than smoking. What they don’t realize is that they are increasing their chances of nicotine addition and harming themselves and those around them with lung-damaging toxins. That’s right, like cigarettes, vaping contains nicotine and other addicting ingredients—disguised with candy-like flavors and cool packaging. Did you know that the nicotine in one vape pod is equivalent to 20 cigarettes?

  • One in two high school students have ever tried an Electronic Vapor Products (EVP)*

  • One in six middle school students have ever tried an EVP.

Top reason why so many teens have used e-cigarettes

According to the 2020 National Youth Tobacco Survey:

  • Top Reason #1: A friend or family member used them

You know vaping is unhealthy, but maybe your friends or family members don’t get it. It can be frustrating or discouraging to see someone you care about making poor lifestyle decisions. While you can try to inform them of the hazards and support them in quitting, you have to remember that it’s up to you to make good decisions about whether or not to try vaping. Here are some strategies that might help:

  • Surround yourself with people who don't smoke or are trying to quit

  • If you’re trying to quit vaping, make sure your friends know you’re trying to quit

  • Let your friends know why being vape-free is important to you and ask them to respect your decision

  • While your friends are taking vape breaks, take that time to leave the room and catch up on texts or watch a funny YouTube video

Risks of secondhand vaping

  • Secondhand vaping is like secondhand smoke, but breathing e-cigarette aerosol toxins instead.

  • Damages lung function

  • Allergic reactions

  • Encourages other young people to take up vaping themselves—vaping seems more acceptable when their friends are doing it.

Not everyone is going to be supportive of your decision, and that’s okay. Stay strong and remember you’re in charge of you.

This information is brought to you by the Partners for Prevention. For Teen resources on substance use and quit vaping support, visit and follow us on Facebook.

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