Nurse's Notes

As a parent, you may not always be aware what is going on in your child's life. Not because you don't try, but because life gets busy, and teens may not be so open with parents about issues affecting them. My hope is to provide parents with some helpful information regarding relevant topics. I will be posting new information monthly. If there are any topics you'd like to know more on, please do not hesitate to let me know! I want this to be informative for everyone.
  • According to the FDA between 2017-2018 there has been a surge in e-cigarette usage of nearly 1.5 million more youth using these devices than in previous years.
  • There has been a 78% increase among high school students and a 48% increase among middle school students.
  • Vaping or “Juuling” as kids call it these days is the inhalation of vapors that are created by an electronic cigarette (e-cigarette).
  • E-cigarettes are battery powered devices, that deliver nicotine through a liquid, which turns into a vapor, when heated. The liquid comes in many flavors, such as mint, fruit or bubblegum, which are especially appealing to children.
  • Youth tend to believe that the vaping liquid only contains water and flavoring and are unaware of the nicotine content. However, the amount of nicotine in the liquid can be the same or even more than that found in cigarettes.
  • No amount of nicotine is safe! Period.
  • Because vaping is relatively new, the long-term effects are not fully known, However, it is widely known how addictive nicotine is. It can slow the brain development in teens, affecting memory concentration, learning, self-control and mood.
  • Vapes and Juuls come in many different forms. Older models look like an actual cigarette, others look like the more traditional “vape pen” you hear about in the news. With advancements current models can be much larger with a vape tube attached to a box or “mod”, while the version most popular with todays youth are “pod based” and resemble a flash drive. (Please view the attached slides for pictures)
  • Teens are also using vape pens to “dab”. Dabbing refers to using high concentrated THC (60-90%) in a wax form that is liquified and inhaled.
  • Generally, the term “dab” refers to an amount of BHO (butane hash oil) or THC product associated with a single use while “dabbing” refers to the act of administering that product.
  • Today’s amateur extracts are often created using a process that involves butane, hence the term “butane hash oil” (BHO), but regardless of the solvent used, the result is a product potentially far more potent than flower cannabis.
  • The National Institutes of Health (NIH) note additional risks involved with dabbing. These risks arise when the butane that is purged from the product can accumulate in a confined space and yield an explosion if ignited by a spark or static electricity.
  • Dabbing can cause a student to develop “shock” like symptoms including loss of consciousness, increased heart rate (tachycardia), sudden drop in blood pressure (hypotension) and increased respirations (tachypnea). Students may also develop nausea and vomiting.
  • Our school district provided our students in grades 6th, 8th, 10th, and 12th with the opportunity to participate in the Pennsylvania Youth Survey. It helps to gather information about a student’s knowledge, attitude, and behavior towards alcohol, tobacco, and other drugs to help communities address root causes of such behaviors.
  • In 2015 questions were added to assess the use of electronic vaping products such as e-cigarettes, vape pipes, and vape pens etc.…
  • The survey revealed that tobacco use (including e-cigarettes and chewing tobacco) are the second most commonly used drug among adolescents in our school district.