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Young People Warned Against The Damage Of Vaping

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Young People Warned Against The Damage Of Vaping

New South Wales Health Minister Brad Hazzard has launched an anti-vaping campaign specifically targeting young people.

Amid rising fears that young people are mistakenly thinking that vaping is safer than smoking, Hazzard and the Minister of Education and Early Learning, Sarah Mitchell, have joined forces to not only try and combat misinformation but to stop teenagers vaping altogether.

The NSW Health awareness campaign, titled Get the Facts - Vaping Toolkit, was launched today.

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On the NSW Government's website, it is reported that campaign was started in a bid to urge young people to 'quit vaping and know the facts and dangers of e-cigarettes which can contain harmful substances found in cleaning products, nail polish remover, weed killer and bug spray'.

Hazzard noted: 'A respiratory researcher once told me that e-vaping liquids have chemicals that are similar to antifreeze, with 500 different flavours to attract kids. It makes it pretty obvious as to the harm it can cause to youngsters’ lungs.'

Indeed, a disease dubbed 'popcorn lung', which causes damage to the small airways in the lungs, was revealed as being caused by a series of chemical substances found in e-cigarettes and vapes, Mail Online reports.

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The illegal levels of chemicals were discovered by the Therapeutic Goods Administration as being present in almost a third of devices being sold in Australia.

Evidence has revealed that even if vapes aren't labelled as containing nicotine, that they can still contain extremely high concentrations of the addictive chemical. So much so, that people can still become addicted to nicotine for life through using the devices.

The Toolkit hopes to offer support for both secondary school children, parents, carers and schools alike, as to how to try and prevent young people from taking up the habit.

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It contains educational materials and resources based on evidence, to 'encourage all parents and young people to find out more and talk about the hidden, dangerous impacts of e-cigarettes,' according to Mitchell.

She commented: 'The number of young people vaping without consideration to the effects is concerning.'

Vape. (Alamy)
Vape. (Alamy)

Alongside the Toolkit, NSW Health is also continuing to strengthen its stance against those who illegally sell e-cigarettes or vapes to minors.

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From July 1, 2020 to December 31, 2021, more than 100,000 e-cigarettes were seized by NWS Health, totalling over $2 million in street value.

Hundreds of vapes were similarly seized in the UK after they were found containing twice the UK legal limit of nicotine.

In Australia, individuals can be fined up to $11,000, and corporations up to $55,000 for first offences if they are caught providing the devices to young people.

Mitchell concluded: 'Educating our young people about the dangers of vaping is essential when there continues to be a large number of reckless individuals selling nicotine products to minors.'

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Featured Image Credit: Alamy

Topics: News, Australia

Poppy Bilderbeck
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