*The following is excerpted from an online article posted on HealthDay.
An epidemic of vaping by American teenagers shows no signs of stopping, with 2019 data finding more than a quarter (27.5%) of high school students using e-cigarettes.
The rate was somewhat lower, but still troubling, among middle school kids — about 1 in every 10 vaped, according to new research from the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.
And just as happens with traditional cigarettes, the nicotine found in e-cigarettes can hook teens for a lifetime, with uncertain results for their health.
“Our nation’s youth are becoming increasingly exposed to nicotine, a drug that is highly addictive and can harm brain development,” CDC Director Dr. Robert Redfield said in an agency news release.
There was a small bit of good news from the new 2019 data: Only 5.8% of high school kids and 2.3% of middle school students smoke traditional cigarettes.
But when all sources of nicotine — vaping, cigarettes, pipes, cigars, hookah and smokeless tobacco — are added up, about 1 in every 3 high school students (4.7 million) and about 1 in 8 middle school students (1.5 million) use some kind of tobacco-derived product, the CDC said.
For the sixth year in a row, e-cigarettes were the most widely used tobacco product among high school and middle school students, the report found.
But there was one glimmer of hope: The new report found that almost 58% of current middle and high school students who use tobacco products said they were seriously thinking about quitting all tobacco products, and 57.5% said they’d stopped using all tobacco products for one or more days because they were trying to quit.
The new data was published Dec. 5, 2019, in the CDC’s journal Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Report.