The following is the summary of “A Close Look at Vaping in Adolescents and Young Adults in the United States” published in the November 2022 issue of Allergy and Clinical Immunology by Polosa, et al.

Electronic cigarette (EC) use may have detrimental effects on the developing lungs of teenagers, making adolescent and young adult vaping a severe worry. This opinion gives the most up-to-date data on the prevalence of vaping among American youth and the effects of EC use on lung health.

High school and college student EC use skyrocketed over the past decade but has thankfully been on the decline since its 2019 high point. In the same time frame, the percentage of adults who smoke has consistently dropped to record lows. These facts disprove the idea that electronic cigarettes are a gateway drug that leads to regular cigarette use. Most people only use EC occasionally. Thus it is quite unlikely that this will cause any health problems. Additionally, former smokers make up the largest demographic of EC users. The long-term health effects of EC use in adolescents and young adults are little understood. 

Long-term, high-quality research in well-defined groups is needed to determine whether or not kids who use EC on an as-needed basis are at increased risk for unfavorable health consequences in later life. Vaping has been related to temporary and insignificant respiratory problems. As a result of the knowledge provided in this commentary, medical professionals will be able to advise patients using evidence-based and ethical EC.