Teens in Roanoke City are like any other teens. Peer pressure and social media can have a lot of influence on teens, but parents can have even more.
Electronic cigarettes come in many different shapes and sizes (and names too). Teens today refer to smoking e-cigarettes as “Juuling” or “Vaping,” and contrary to what many think these pesky items are filled with more than just flavoring and water. MOST e-cigarettes, do indeed, contain nicotine and there are major health consequences to using them in adolescent years.
So start talking.
According to the US Department of Health and Human Services, these tips can help you get started:
Find out what your child already knows.
- Ask simple questions like: What do you know about vaping? Have your friends mentioned it or do you know kids your age that vape? Do you know what negative things can happen when youth vape?
Teach your child the facts.
- Remind your child that the use of any nicotine products including e-cigarettes, is unsafe. Nicotine is a highly addictive chemical and can harm brain development, which continues to develope until the age of 25.
Give your child clear rules.
- Good rules make it clear to your youth that it is not acceptable for them to use ANY nicotine product when they are under the age of 18. And let them know the consequences if they do.
Be prepared to answer your child’s questions.
- Be honest because this topic can bring about serious questions, so know the facts about nicotine products use and the effects when talking to your child.
Talk with your child about how to say “no.”
- Make sure your child knows you can be the excuse. Remind them they can say “My mom will know if I do this, she has a 6th sense about these things and she would call your mom if she finds out, so no thanks, I don’t want any of us getting into trouble!”
The following links may help you navigate this process and remember parental involvement is key to reducing underage nicotine use: