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Smoking, vaping and adolescents

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As paediatricians we may have mixed feelings about e-cigarettes or ‘vaping’ devices, from which users inhale flavoured water vapour with added nicotine. I often recommend them to smoking parents whose children have respiratory disease, on the assumption that secondary exposure is less harmful than with tobacco smoke. But what about our adolescent patients? If we suspect a young person is smoking tobacco or at risk of starting, should we recommend vaping to them as well? E-cigarette use amongst young people has increased markedly in recent years, while smoking rates have fallen. This …

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