Why do young people - who have never smoked - take up vaping?
Jul 1, 2022
Vaping amongst young people is continuing to cause concern. The supply of illegal disposable nicotine vapes has spread all across Queensland. Despite all the concern about youth vaping, there have been very few studies that have asked young people who have never smoked about why they have taken up vaping.
Researchers from New Zealand have published a study titled “A qualitative analysis of electronic nicotine delivery systems (ENDS) uptake and use among young adult never-smokers in New Zealand.” The article describes the outcomes of a set of semi-structured interviews with 16 people aged between 18 and 24 who use nicotine vapes. The interviewees described their use of nicotine vapes as enhancing their sense of connection and belonging, and providing communal experiences that facilitate social interactions.
People who were able to master vape tricks (for example blowing smoke rings) generated social cachet within their peer groups. Some of the young people reported using nicotine vapes to manage stress or to suppress appetite, while they also reported experiencing stigma relating to their vape use. Participants stated that their belief that nicotine vaping is safer than traditional cigarette smoking.