One thing in life proven consistent are the perpetual change of ‘what’s cool’ and what’s not. Cigs are out, vapes are in.
More high schools students in the United States have turned away from cigarettes and replaced them with marijuana and vaporizers, a survey revealed earlier this month.
Funded by the National Institute on Drug Abuse, the Monitoring the Future survey shows that within the past month, 22.9% of 43,703 teenagers from 360 public and private schools across the country had used marijuana with 16.6% using vaporizers.
Surprisingly, only 9.7% opted for cigarettes; and the group’s alcohol, tobacco and stimulant consumptions steadily dipped to the lowest rates in the past two decades.
According to the study, the upward trend in cannabis among the study group comes with less perceived risks from using marijuana. Only 14.1% of high school seniors reported smoking marijuana occasionally as a “great risk.”
“It is possible that this could be the start of an upswing in marijuana use, given that 12th graders today see less risk in marijuana use than any cohorts we’ve seen in recent decades,” the Monitoring the Future’s principal investigator Dr. Richard Miech told U.S. News & World Report. “These low levels of perceived risk may set the stage for substantial, future increases in youth marijuana use.”
The findings also indicate that in the past year 27.8% of high school seniors used vaping devices, which heats substances into an inhalant. The devices are supported by some experts for being safer and healthier than regular cigarettes.
Roughly 17% of high school seniors in the past month reported vaping of any kind, with 11% of them said they vaped nicotine and 10% vaped “just flavoring.” Nearly 5% reported vaping marijuana.
The study of vaporizers is infant compared to the research on other alternatives such as alcohol, tobacco and cannabis. So, there’s no guarantee whether vaping can lead to tobacco use in the future or pose long term health hazards.