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Vaping Has Created a New Generation of Nicotine-Addicted Teens

A few years ago, teen smoking had dropped to a historic low. Now, those numbers are rising again. A recent study by the National Institute on Drug Abuse (NIDA) found that fewer teens are using heroin, prescription opioid medications, and alcohol, but vaping and marijuana are increasingly popular with middle and high school students. Over one-third of high school seniors say they’ve used a vaping product, but many don’t realize that the flavorings can contain nicotine and other potentially harmful chemicals. Teens who vape are more likely to also smoke cigarettes, and many move back and forth between vaping and smoking. NIDA also found that 36 percent of seniors used marijuana at least sometimes, and close to 6 percent said they used it daily. Many teens see marijuana as safe and natural, but health officials say that cannabis causes lasting cognitive impairment in adolescents and is worse for teen brains than alcohol.

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