From Get Smart About Drugs.
Teens and Vaping
The Effects of Vaping and COVID-19
Right now, because the illness is relatively new, there isn’t enough data showing a direct link between vaping (the use of an e-cigarette to inhale vapors from nicotine, marijuana or flavorings) and COVID-19.
But here’s what we do know:
- Vaping (and smoking) can cause damage to a person’s lungs. Those activities can also affect a person’s immune system.
- People with lung issues are more hurt by COVID-19 symptoms than healthy people.
“We know in medicine, a tissue that has suffered harm is more vulnerable.
The big centers where you are observing the rise in COVID-19 cases, that’s where you are more likely to see the comorbidity of vaping,” she said.
Vaping Continues to Rise
In 2019, 14% of high school seniors admitted to vaping marijuana in the past month. This is almost double the percentage from 2018.
In addition, 21% of 12th graders reported vaping marijuana within the past year — an increase from the 13.1 percent in 2018.
Researchers have been conducting this survey each year since 1975. This year, they surveyed over 42,000 8th, 10th, and 12th graders across the country about their drug use.
“The increases in vaping of THC, the active ingredient in marijuana, are alarming for a number of reasons. For one thing, we don’t yet know if THC’s effects differ when vaped versus when smoked in a traditional fashion or whether the amount of THC that youth are being exposed to differs with these methods,” wrote Dr. Volkow in her blog.