Home > Pulmonology > NLC 2022 > Vaping amongst adolescents: a worrying trend

Vaping amongst adolescents: a worrying trend

Presented By
Dr Anu Linnansaari, University of Tampere, Finland
NLC 2022
According to Finnish research, there is a strong need to strengthen preventive policies on e-cigarettes to prevent adolescents to fall prey to the tobacco epidemic. This includes comprehensive and strict e-cigarette regulations, that extend to all tobacco regulations. Also, targeted regulation/enforcement that considers the innovative characteristics of these products is required.

E-cigarettes have become increasingly popular, especially among young people. “This is definitely a reason to be worried,” stated Dr Anu Linnansaari (University of Tampere, Finland). “Adolescent nicotine exposure can induce significant long-term deficits in the developing brain with an increased risk of impulsive behaviour and decreased attention, cognitive impairment, and a negative emotional state. Also, this may carry a 3 times higher increased risk of smoking initiation.”

Dr Linnansaari investigated the use and social meaning of vaping among Danish, Finnish, and Norwegian adolescents aged 15–20 years old. Four separate themes were addressed to gain more insights into this practice. The first theme was youth vaping as a social practice, which demonstrated that vaping amongst young people stood as an inherently social practice that was commonly interlinked with experimental and occasional use patterns. Investigating the second theme, appeal of low harm to health, showed that e-cigarettes were seen as rather harmless, at least less harmful than ordinary cigarettes and snus. Occasional use and the so-called ‘innocent’ flavour additives added to this perception. From appeal of product innovation, the third theme, it was made clear that innovative features facilitated new and playful use practices, again with the novelty and appeal of flavours playing a key role. Finally, the fourth theme, youths' digital lives provide new arenas for e-cigarettes, demonstrated that the use of e-cigarettes by young people was integrated into their digital lives. This is made possible by the digital availability of various social media channels, as well as digital information and influence and the self-presentation of youths on digital platforms. Dr Linnansaari concluded that considering youth culture, the innovative characteristics of the novel products and the global phenomenon of the tobacco epidemic, it is vital to ensure effective tobacco prevention and healthcare practices such as cessation support [1].

  1. Linnansaari A. E-cigarette use in Nordic adolescents: trends, youth’s own reflections and cross-country differences in legislation. Results from the NADNIC study. Nordic Lung Congress 2022, 01–03 June, Copenhagen, Denmark.


Copyright ©2022 Medicom Medical Publishers

Posted on