Is underage vaping really a problem? Here’s everything you should know.
Vaping has seen a massive surge in popularity in the last five years.
Many smokers have made the switch to the much less harmful alternative. But it’s also particularly prevalent among teenagers, who aren’t former or current smokers, and parents across the country are becoming concerned.
Vape products are tightly monitored in the UK, with anyone under the age of 18 being prohibited from purchasing e-cigs and e-liquid both in-store and online, which begs the question – where are underaged teens getting them from? And how is it such a huge problem?
Here’s what you need to know.
Why are teens vaping?
There are many reasons why teens in the UK have decided to start vaping.
In a report from Action on Smoking and Health (ASH) published in June last year, the large majority of teens (who had never smoked before) stated their main reason for vaping was ‘just to give it a try’.
11.1% of teens said they started because other people were doing it and they wanted to join in, and 4.8% said it was because they enjoy the experience.
Where are they getting e-cigarettes from?
In the report, 40% of teens aged 11-17 stated that their main e-cigarette source was the shops.
32% say they got their device from a friend or family member, and 20% say they got theirs online.
Of course, the sale of e-cigarette products to anyone under the age of 18 is an offence, and any reliable supplier, like ourselves, would never provide goods to anyone without valid identification.
What can we do to reduce teen vaping?
There are a number of ways in which we can reduce underage vaping.
Educating teens on the risks of nicotine consumption is one path worth exploring, but many will experiment regardless.
This is why it’s important to reduce their exposure to these types of products as much as possible.
In the UK, we have a smoke-free goal of 2030, and as part of this are considering raising the legal age to use vape products to 21.
Further regulating the way these products are displayed in stores, as well as having a challenge 25 policy, may be more helpful – but what about online sales?
Options like digital age verification are also a big help, and certain platforms will help reduce the use of counterfeit or borrowed IDs when purchasing regulated goods.