I have a lot of friends who vape. I have always really wanted to try, but I am scared. Can I try it even though I know it’s bad? If I just try it once, how bad is it for me? Can I get addicted after one time? Would my parents find out?

Great question! Sometimes it’s really hard to say “No” to friends, especially when they are trying a new popular trend. Except when it comes to vaping, it’s different. Vaping is a harmful new trend that uses electronic-cigarettes (e-cigarettes) and e-liquid to produce vapors (aka vaping). Most teens don’t realize that e-liquid contains harmful metals such as nickel, tin, and lead and can lead to serious health problems. Vaping contains nearly 20 times MORE nicotine than a regular cigarette, and that’s a lot! Nicotine is a harmful and addictive chemical found in traditional cigarettes. Teens who use nicotine are at an increased risk for having underdeveloped brains, leading to poor attention, mood, learning, and impulse control. Since the chemicals are so addictive, teens are at a higher risk for developing addictive habits later in life, even after just one puff!

No one should ever pressure you into doing something you simply don’t want to do. Try talking with someone you trust, such as a guidance counselor, teacher, health care provider (HCP), or other trusted adult. Explain to that person how you are feeling and that you need help coming up with ways to say “no.” It’s important to remember that a good friend will respect your decision to just say no and won’t continue to pressure you into doing something that you’ve said no to.