Vaping: A Dangerous and New Epidemic


Juul is a popular brand of e-cigarette. Behind it is a much larger vape mod, capable of holding much more of the nicotine-filled juice. (Dylan Tressider)

Dylan Tressider, Review Staff

‘Anybody got a pod?’

Anyone who has gone to Rangeview has heard someone talk about vaping or has seen it happen. It has become part of our lifestyle and our culture at Rangeview. However, with nearly 400 cases of vaping-related illnesses and six deaths according to CNN, the safety of vaping is undoubtedly questionable at best. 

In light of these deaths, the Trump Administration has been looking over a possible ban of all e-cigarette flavoring or flavored e-cigs as they seem to target a younger audience with flavors like cotton candy, skittles, and sour apple. Many think these flavors could be causing an increase in vaping due to its appeal to a younger group of people and some students agree

“These things [E-cigarettes] are advertised to be more interesting and attractive to kids by adding flavors,” Sophomore Adekunle Adebayo said.

Although e-cig products were originally proposed to help smokers quit, it’s no secret that they have all but failed in trying to do so. With 42.5% of 12th graders reporting to have vaped in their lifetimes, according to safetyandhealthmagazine, it can be easily argued that e-cigs have only created a new epidemic amongst a younger and more susceptible group of people.

While the CDC (Centers for Disease Control and Prevention) has stated that they are still not sure what the relationship between all the recent deaths is exactly, there is no discrepancy that vaping is related to all of them. 

So, with obvious health concerns, the question must be asked:

Why Don’t The Just Stop?

Even with all these health concerns, many students who vape at Rangeview have no intention of quitting just because of the reported deaths.

“Yes, I’ve heard of the deaths but it won’t stop me from vaping. We all die one day, young or old,” said Senior Samantha Dale.

So, even with the dangerous health concerns, why is it that students and people in general are unable to stop vaping?

The answer: addiction.

Vaping products contain a plethora of chemical possibilities, but most vape juices contain one other, far more addictive substance: nicotine. 

A juul charging. Juuls have a battery life and a variety of different functions that allow them to do different things, such as tapping the side of the Juul for the device to display a color that represents its battery life. (Dylan Tressider)

What is Nicotine?

Nicotine is an addictive substance containing nitrogen that can come from Tobacco and other plants, or can be produced synthetically, according to medicalnewstoday. The substance is addictive largely because of the ‘kick’ that it gives users. (A rush of adrenaline and glucose which raises heart rate, breathing activity, and blood pressure, according to medicalnewstoday). 

Nicotine isn’t just an addiction that can be given up easily; according to medicalnewstoday, nicotine is at least as hard to give up as heroin.

With the obvious addictive potential of nicotine, some may be confused as to why vape juices even have a substance like nicotine (the same addictive substance found in cigarettes), and the reasoning (at least originally) was to help smokers slowly dial down on their nicotine usage and eventually quit. However, it’s clear that as time has progressed, the nicotine additive in vape juices is only getting more people addicted, especially teens. The trend of vaping gains the most speed on social media platforms.

“I feel like nicotine in vape juices is worse than regular cigarettes because it’s glorifying the use of nicotine since vaping is so popular,” said Sophomore Angelia Griffith.

However, to be fair, there are some vape juices sold that do not contain nicotine, but many teens have the misconception that all vape juice is nicotine-free, according to nbcnews. The popular vape brand Juul does not offer a nicotine-free pod for its Juuls, and according to Juul themselves, some Juul pods contain about 20 cigarettes worth of nicotine. Many think it is just water vapor and flavoring, which is a dangerous and possibly life-altering thing to think about. According to Freeman Vape Juice, most vape juices contain things such as:

  • Propylene glycol
  • Vegetable glycerin
  • Nicotine
  • Flavoring 
  • And other possible additives could be present in vape juice such as THC (The chemical that makes marijuana a drug)

Here at Rangeview; A Call to Action

The dangers of vaping has caused many to speak out against it. The slogan ‘End Vape Culture’ has gained ground on some platforms. If you want to help end smoking and vaping, then you can visit TheTruth and help be the generation that ends nicotine addiction. (Google Images)

According to the American Lung Association, teen vaping amongst youths is higher in Colorado than it is in any other state. (Fox)

So, here at Rangeview, it should be the job of every student to create a welcoming and safe environment for everyone, and the fact is that after nearly 400 cases of vaping-related illness, vaping just isn’t safe and it doesn’t make you cool.

So, try to be a little better today, so that tomorrow when you hear, 

‘Anybody got a pod?’

There is nothing short of an uproar of disapproval from the students at Rangeview.