Teens have recently found a new way to smoke pot — through e-cigarette vaporizers. According to a study from Monday, over 27 percent of teenagers who have smoked both pot and e-cigarettes said to have used the vaporizers to inhale marijuana. Studies also report that those most likely to vaporize cannabis with e-cigarettes were younger males. E-cigarettes were made to vaporize substances that contained nicotine, according to co-author Meghan Rabbitt Morean, an assistant professor at Oberlin College.
However, she also noted, “teenagers are resourceful, and it was only a matter of time. Vaporizers give kids a better way to hide what they’re inhaling. It’s so much easier to conceal e-cigarette pot use,” continued Morean. “Everybody knows that characteristic smell of marijuana, but this vapor is different. It’s possible that teenagers are using pot in a much less detectable way.”
Scientists at Yale University conducted the study with a survey sent to about 4,000 local students. Published Monday, almost 28% of students in the report tried e-cigarettes. According to Morean, people should try to be prudent when deciphering her results. There has not been any other proof that shows students using e-cigs to vaporize pot. She also stated that scientists don’t know the full health effects of e-cig-vaporized marijuana. Cannabis use in other ways may lead to many health problems like short-term memory loss, decreased learning, lower sperm count and lung damage, stated by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.
“We now know it’s happening, but there are more questions about who is using and how damaging it is,” Morean said.
A report in the journal Nicotine and Tobacco Research shows that e-cigs use among adolescents rose over 200% from 2011 to 2013; they also never used regular cigarettes.
“Unfortunately, there is really no end for what can be vaporized in these devices,” according to Erika Sward – a spokeswoman for the American Lung Association.
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