Vaping a huge health setback

First case of a correlating illness in B.C. should be a wake-up call

News of the first vaping-related illness being determined in B.C. shouldn’t come as a huge surprise.

There will be many more.

In fact, Provincial health officer Dr. Bonnie Henry has said as much that health officials “fully expect there will be more as this is quickly emerging as a significant public health issue.”

Anyone who ever thought vaping might be less damaging than smoking cigarettes is sadly mistaken.

A University of B.C. professor even said it’s “not surprising” that vaping-related illness is on the rise.

“It’s been growing very rapidly among school kids but it’s also also growing very rapidly among the 19-25 age group,” said Okanagan campus psychology professor Marvin Krank.

Doctors have long said if people want to improve the odds of not experiencing deteriorating health in their later years – if they get there at all – the No. 1 priority would be to quit smoking. Vaping doesn’t suddenly become an instant alternative without some affect on health.

The amazing thing is the majority of those who’ve embraced vaping are smart young people, who you really think would have made better choices. Many of these same young people otherwise live very healthy lifestyles, getting plenty of exercise and watching what they eat. The contradiction with making a habit of vaping when they won’t eat fatty foods or remain idle for long doesn’t make sense.

“Vaping is turning back the clock on decades of effective anti-smoking efforts and creating a new generation of young people addicted to nicotine,” Henry noted.

Health Minister Adrian Dix added current regulations are “insufficient,” and a plan would be issued in the coming weeks.

In the bigger picture, the numbers are startling. More than 1,000 people in the U.S., and some in Canada, have developed lung issues seemingly linked to vaping.

To borrow a cannabis term, this situation needs to be nipped in the bud. There will surely be a huge cost in human lives and health care resulting from vaping if left unchecked.

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