Middle and Upper School students got the straight dope on the vaping industry and its inherent risks in a recent Morning Ex with Licensed Clinical Professional Counselor and Certified Alcohol and Drug Counselor Matthew Quinn.
In his presentation “Vaping: It’s All About the Benjamins,” Quinn aimed to alert students to the nefarious ends of the manufacturers of vaping products, who deliberately create and market products geared to younger audiences as a way of ensuring maximum profit potential for each prospective customer.
Quinn shared examples of ways these companies have been preying on the youth consumer, including the semantic shift from “e-cigarette” to “vaping,” flavor formulations like Berry Blast and ad campaigns featuring distinctly young-looking models.
Quinn shared a list of poisonous ingredients in many of these products, provided an overview of the ways nicotine and THC impair the teen brain and spoke to the potential for addiction associated with youth who use substances like vaping products, sharing that 9 out of 10 adults with substance abuse issues starting using by the time they were 18.
In the end, Quinn ended his remarks imploring his student audience to do three things:
Don’t fall for misleading messaging as it relates to vaping products.
Help to spread accurate information to peers about vaping products (i.e., aerosol, chemicals, lung burns, brain development, risk for progression).
Use available resources to quit if you have started vaping.
Quinn provided a number of resources for students who wanted to learn more truth about the vaping industry or who were personally trying to quit vaping.
All those in attendance left with a better understanding of this emerging industry and its relationship with the youth consumer.