Vaping “Outbreak” Leads to 1,300 Lung Injuries and 26 Deaths

PYLUSD to install vape detectors, add additional instruction in health classes, and currently has "Parent University" programs, and health counseling for students caught vaping.

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Kathryn DeLoia, A former vaper, age 17, living in Leavenworth Kansas, said “It felt like I was suffocating.” Kathryn DeLoia was told that her lungs were eighty years older than they were supposed to be. The mysterious vaping outbreak in the U.S. has led to nearly 1,300 lung injuries and 26 deaths, including deaths among young, healthy people, as of September 2, according to livescience.com, 

 E-cigarettes are battery-powered smoking devices. Some come in different sizes or colors, but all vapes are made of the same four components. Those four components consist of a battery, which powers the device and allows all other parts to operate smoothly. A tank where the e-liquid is stored before vaporization, a mouthpiece, to funnel vapor from the atomizer into the users mouth, stated vaporfi.com

Vaping has been advertised as a way to help people quit smoking according to the first electronic cigarette was developed in America. In 1963 Herbert A Gilbert applied for a patent for his “smokeless non-tobacco cigarette”, and the patent was granted in 1965. Gilbert’s invention was nicotine-free, but it produced a flavoured vapour that was supposed to replace tobacco smoke according to vapingpost.com.

Approximately 8,000 known e-liquid flavors available on the market today, including Banana Pudding, Caramel Corn Crunch, Rainbow Candy, Glazed Donut, Sub Zero Watermelon, Hawaiian Punch — the list goes on and on; names like treats from some imaginary dessert menu, The manufacturing companies made these flavors to make the smoke taste good, but it just led to kids wanting to try the flavors reported healthline.com.

According to Mr. Richard McAlindin, Executive Director of Instructional Support for Placentia-Yorba Linda Unified, in an interview with the Matador Messenger stated, “It is difficult to determine the sole reason why there is an increase in student use.”

 There may, however, be some contributing factors. First, students have increased access to obtaining vape devices as they are readily available to anyone 18 or older. Also, many companies market vaping as a safer alternative to smoking which may also be a contributing factor.” Vaping was marketed as a good alternative for people who are trying to quit smoking, but vaping became more dangerous when companies put in the nicotine, the addictive part,  according to hopkinsmedicine.com

The ingredients in vape juice includes nicotine is addictive and the flavorings can be bad for the lungs. New research shows that e-cigarettes have ingredients that are not disclosed to users.. A teaspoon of 12 mg e-liquid is equal to about 60 cigarettes, reported  southbeachsmoke.com

PYLUSD has begun to address the issue of teen vaping by creating new measures to make schools “vape free.”

The path the district is taking has been recently adding vaping detectors in high schools such as Esperanza and Yorba Linda. Mrs. Aguilar, the Principal of Esperanza High School, stated in an interview with the Matador Messenger,  “We have not had the vape detectors installed yet. They should be coming in the next couple of weeks.The district decided to put the vape detectors in the school bathrooms due to the extreme amount of concerns expressed by the students, parents, and school administrators,”

In addition to installing vaping detectors in some schools, the district is also trying to stop students from starting to vape. Mr. McAlindin, a former middle school principal and  now the Director of Instructional Support  stated, “The District also provides education to students on the dangers of vape devices through the ninth grade health classes. Students learn about the health risks associated with vaping.”

Also, the District has provided education to students who are caught using a vape device on campus. The District annually offers a parent education class on drug use, which includes information on vaping. This class is offered through our Parent University program.”

No tested or approved methods for quitting e-cigarettes, currently exist.” Just be prepared for peer pressure,” said Linda Richter, Director of Policy Research and Analysis at the Center on Addiction

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