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Flavored Air? Don't Go There!

A sickly sweet aroma has taken over the Hackett bathrooms. 


From the colorful packaging and ads on social media to the abstract flavoring, such as mint, strawberry kiwi, and blue razz and even flavors like Graham Crackers, the advertising of vapes has been heavily directed toward teens.


Despite these misleading flavors, the use of vapes has many harmful effects. Society has advertised vapes to be a “safe” method to quit cigarettes, yet they still deliver vaporized nicotine to the lungs. Additionally, the exposure to nicotine can negatively affect the development of adolescent brains. 


According to Johns Hopkins Medicine, the use of vapes can lead to “popcorn lung” or bronchiolitis obliterans, which causes damage to the lungs’ small airways. When inhaling harmful chemicals, it causes inflammation and can lead to permanent scarring of the lungs’ small airways, making breathing difficult. 


Vaping can also lead to lipoid pneumonia where fatty acids, the building blocks of fat, enter the lungs leading to symptoms such as chronic cough, shortness of breath, and even the coughing up blood or blood-tinged mucus. Vaping has also been associated with primary spontaneous pneumothorax, or collapsed lung, where a hole appears in the lungs where oxygen escapes. 


Additionally, the use of vaping can harm the developing brain. According to the CDC, vaping can harm the parts of the brain that control attention, learning, mood, and impulse control. Furthermore, synapses, where the brain cells communicate and connect, can be changed or even damaged with exposure to nicotine, which can also lead to issues such as an increase in nicotine addiction. There have been studies that have shown that prolonged use of vaping over a 12-month observation has a greater rate of increase in depressive symptoms over time. 


According to the CDC, there has been a decrease in e-cigarette use among high school students from 2022 to 2023 from 14.1% to 10.0%. This decrease shows some progress, yet this problem is still at large.


From a variety of sources, there have been reports of a sickly odor resonating throughout the bathrooms. One student said “Every time I walk in the girls' bathroom, I always get a fruity smell of Pina Colada” referencing the frequent odor around the bathrooms. 


Another report says that “in past years, the bathrooms were way worse than they are today.” This does show an improvement in the decrease of vaping in our bathrooms, yet it is still not enough.


As an effort to understand, here's an interview of a fellow student, “Vaping starts out as fun, but then as time goes on it just turns into a routine. It goes from something you look forward to experiencing to something you dread when you can’t for a few hours. I vaped constantly for a little over a year, and I am so glad that I quit. Don’t try it. “


Lastly, this report should be the mindset the Hackett community should embody, “stench gives me the courage to avoid such degenerate activities.” 


Say no to nicotine!


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