Your typical bad boy in a 50’s movie wears a black leather jacket. His hair slicked back, and of course, a lit cigarette in his mouth. For some reason that cigarette made him look like such a bad ass. In the reality of it all, the young teen was slowly, but surely killing himself. That was in the 50’s. Have we truly understood the damage that comes with voluntarily inhaling anything that contains nicotine?
If we take a glance to about four years ago, according to the U.S. Department of Health and Human Service, about 30% of high school students would smoke a cigarette daily. About only two years ago, 1 in 25 students would smoke a cigarette. Generation z was nearing the end of smoking cigarettes. Unfortunately, a substitute came into play. What is known as the E cigarettes or Juul has become a phenomenon within today’s youth.
Since vapes and e cigarettes seemed to recently entice our younger population, it was hard to truly determine the long term effects. Initially, the Juul was intended to aid people who were trying to quit smoking cigarettes. The difference between an actual cigarette and a Juul is that the Juul does not hold any burning or combustion; it actually releases an aerosol which contains the nicotine. Nicotine is in both cigarettes and Juuls. When you purchase any, nicotine labels are placed all over the product that lets the consumer know that it is highly addictive. That is where we begin to address the issue.
Juuls seem to be mainstream and an “aesthetic” to middle schoolers and high schoolers. As stated before, the Juul was meant to help people drift away from their nicotine addiction. In most states, the age to purchase any nicotine product must be 18. How are they purchasing them? On most websites, you simply just need to check “yes” to saying you are 18. Since the Juul is very discreet and easy to smoke wherever and whenever, teens seem to latch onto these much easier and opening them up to create a nicotine addiction that was nonexistent.
The founder of Juul, Kevin Burns, even publicized his apology over teens becoming addicted to the product. He claims that “It’s not intended for them” He also mentioned that he himself has a 16 year old and empathized with the parents.
So what happens if you do become addicted to something as horrible as nicotine? You are at risk for a several amount of diseases such as lung disease, chronic bronchitis, and even heart disease. I am sure that all seems to be common knowledge, but the effects of it could be endless.
A 22 year old man named Maxwell Berger became addicted to Juul products in his senior year of high school. Three years later, Berger suffered from massive hemorrhagic stroke. According to Forbes Magazine, he underwent three major brain surgeries and spent more than 100 days in the hospital. This stroke left him with his left side paralyzed, speech impairment, and about half of his sight was lost from both of his eyes. His life will never be the same.
Many people seem to want to conform to our society. If everyone is doing it, then they should too. That is not a way you should live. Yes, live life to the fullest, but do not put your life at risk while doing so. It is important to know what is being put into your body. If you do choose to put some toxins into your body once in awhile, make sure you limit yourself. Treat your body like the temple that it is.