appropriate punishment for teenage vaping
Cigarette smoking and alcohol drinking has become a trend for the young generation, and most parents are having a hard time dealing with this issue. While vaping devices have alleviated some of the problems related to nicotine consumption, most people are not aware of how harmful e-cigarettes really are.

Teen nicotine addiction can have unfavorable effects on your teen’s health. Being dependent on illicit substances causes negative consequences that may be experienced in later life. In this article, you will understand the facts about vaping, its health risks and consequences, and the symptoms of its use. Furthermore, we will discuss punishments for vaping teenagers.

Facts About Vaping: Myths, Effects, and Risks

Vaping is the inhalation of vapor through an electronic cigarette (e-cigarette) or other vaping devices that are battery-powered and portable. They come in different colors and shapes but are usually pen-like devices.
Some people associate vaping with smoking and use these terms interchangeably. However, they are two different things. They have distinct features as well as chemical compositions. In any case, both can be harmful to one’s health.

Vaping vs. Smoking

Vaping involves an e-cigarette that produces smoke by vaporizing different liquids, called “juices.” They have cartridges that contain liquid flavorings and other substances, such as nicotine. These liquids are vaporized and then inhaled. Some vape juice flavors include mint, strawberry, cotton candy, chocolate, coffee, and more.
On the other hand, smoking is usually associated with cigarettes that contain tobacco rolled inside a thin paper. Both e-cigarettes and traditional cigarettes have adverse effects on a person’s health, especially on the respiratory system. 

Debunking the Myths About Vaping

Disinformation is always a problem, especially when it comes to trendy stuff and its effects on one’s health. Some people are trying to make e-cigarettes appear beneficial in order to boost their sales. Listed below are some myths surrounding vapes, along with the truths to debunk them.
  • Myth #1: Vaping is safe. The most common misconception is that vaping does not have detrimental effects on someone’s health. The liquids in most e-cigarettes can contain nicotine or even marijuana.
  • Myth #2: Teens are allowed to vape. Like cigarettes, underage teens are not allowed to vape in public places. Furthermore, parents should prevent their children from vaping to avoid severe health problems in the long run. Vaping teens are more likely to develop an addiction to tobacco products.
  • Myth #3: Vaping reduces nicotine addiction and helps a person quit cigarettes. E-cigarettes may contain nicotine, so it only encourages smokers to switch to another product while still being dependent on nicotine.
  • Myth #4: Vaping is not expensive. Switching to e-cigarettes is generally cheaper than actual cigarettes. A smoker who consumes at least ten cigarettes a day can save a considerable amount of money. However, that does not mean that vaping devices are cheap. Most vapers want “cool” designs and styles, which are generally more expensive than purchasing packs of cigarettes.

Health Risks and Dangers of Vaping

Although e-cigarettes are not as harmful as other tobacco products, they contain numerous chemicals such as nicotine, formaldehyde, and acetaldehyde. They pose health risks and may cause chronic lung injuries and cardiovascular or heart ailments. Furthermore, people with asthma and chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) are likely to suffer severe consequences when vaping.
In a recent report by the National Institute on Drug Abuse (NIDA), in December 2018, there was a “dramatic increase” in the use of vaping or electronic cigarettes among teens in America, with an alarming record of 37.3% of high school seniors had vaped in the previous year. As a parent, you must know how to talk to your kid about vaping, Read the article and prepare yourself for the talk, before the talk.
Vaping also causes damage to the central nervous system (CNS). The dangerous substances in e-cigarettes can affect the brain’s overall functioning, making someone lose coordination and concentration. These may also affect the nerves, leading to muscle spasms and tremors.
Loss of proper judgment and decision-making abilities might lead to aggressive and risky behaviors. A teen might get involved in fistfights, road rage, or accidents. 

Lastly, teens who vape are more likely to develop smoking or drug addiction habits when they grow older. E-cigarettes that contain nicotine develop one’s dependence on drugs, making them “hooked.” Not being able to inhale something makes them experience withdrawal symptoms. This will end up increasing their tolerance to other illicit substances such as marijuana, cocaine, and heroin. Also, learning about how to stop cocaine addiction on your own for teen might be necessary.

Is Your Teen in Trouble for Vaping?

Vaping does not only pose health risks to teens, but it can also be punishable by law. When it comes to the use of e-cigarettes, the most common question that comes to mind is, “Is vaping legal?”
In the United States, the use and sale of e-cigarettes to adults are allowed. In 2016, the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) implemented the regulation of e-cigarettes as tobacco products. However, the FDA prohibits the sale of vapes to minors. California is one of the few states that banned the use and sale of flavored e-cigarettes and menthol cigarettes in 2020.

However, as of March 2021, at least 15 American states allow vaping while upholding the law for smoke-free indoors, including California. Different localities and communities in California impose different restrictions on the use of e-cigarettes. The entire state prohibits the use of e-cigarettes in workplaces, hospitals, daycare facilities, food facilities, Farmers’ Market (within 25 feet), cars (with minors), public transportation, and school playgrounds.

The legal age for vaping in the US is 21 years old. Anyone under that age that gets caught vaping, especially in public places, might be punished by law and face legal consequences.
Many parents suspect that their teen has been vaping, but they don’t have proof. If you believe that your teen is vaping, Our article How to tell if your teen is vaping will help you find all the answers.

Symptoms of Vaping in Teens

Behavioral changes, such as your teen being suddenly irritable, might be a sign of vaping addiction. They might also withdraw from social groups or family and lock themselves up inside their rooms. Your teen’s school may call you due to their declining academic performance or poor attendance.
If your teen is vaping, you may also notice tangible signs, such as seeing unfamiliar objects inside their school bags and bedrooms or their clothes smelling sweet.
Their overall health will be affected by e-cigarettes. Your teen may experience dry coughing and mouth sores. In the worst scenario, a teen who consumes multiple e-cigarettes every day may develop lung scarring and inflammation. Furthermore, excessive amounts of nicotine or marijuana can lead to memory loss at an older age. 

Ways to Punish Your Teen for Vaping

Now that you are aware of the hazards brought by e-cigarettes, you have every right to punish your teen for vaping. It does not matter if they are only using it for recreational purposes. Vaping is still addictive and damaging. Some ways to punish your child are scolding and grounding them. 

Vaping at Home

You can set some house rules to deter your child from vaping. These can include picking them up from school to limit their independence, not allowing them to go outside on their own, and setting curfew hours for going to bed. These will help you monitor their behavior and prevent them from smoking e-cigarettes inside and outside your house.

Vaping Within School Premises

Punishments for vaping in school, conversely, depend on the rules and regulations set by the institution. Most kids use vape pens because they cannot be easily recognized as e-cigarettes. Common punishments include community service, one-week suspension for first or second offenses, and even expulsion for repeated behavior.

What Happens if You are Caught Vaping?

There are penalties for underage teenagers who vape. While possession of e-cigarettes and other vaping devices is not punishable by law, the use of such devices has legal consequences. For the first offense, your teen must pay a penalty of at least $100. For the second offense, fees go up to $500, then $2500 for the third offense. They are also required to attend lessons on the health risks of vaping and render community services. For repeated behaviors, teens 17 and below may be sent to juvenile hall, but if your teen is 18 or above, they may be sent to an adult jail.

How Can You Discipline Your Vaping Teen?

Here are some practical methods to discipline your teen and get teenagers to stop vaping:
  • Communicate — Talk with them sincerely. While they must understand what will happen if they are caught vaping, you should also try to understand their reasons.
  • Improve your parent-child relationship — Some teenage behaviors are caused by issues that they have difficulty talking about. Encourage your teens to talk to you, rather than resort to rebellious actions such as using e-cigarettes or consuming alcoholic drinks.
  • Bribe them, if necessary — If your teen loves receiving gifts, you may offer them rewards for choosing to minimize or quit the use of e-cigarettes. In this way, they are encouraged to make healthier decisions.
  • Not all punishments are equal — Punishment for vaping in school might be a lot different from punishment for using marijuana. Although both actions are wrong, your teen must understand the severity of each situation.
  • Offer them support — Always express your love and support to help your teen quit vaping.

If your teen’s behavior is beyond your control, you can always reach out to us and seek professional help. We offer an extremely high level of care with our teen residential treatment program. We are ready to help your teen quit vaping.  All of our teen addiction treatment programs include teen counseling, family therapy and teenage life skills support.