Wed. Apr 17th, 2024

NSW Health is urging parents to be aware of the dangers of vaping among young people in the lead up to school holidays, and have early conversations with their teenagers to help discourage vaping.

NSW Chief Health Officer, Dr Kerry Chant said vapes contain dangerous ingredients which could cause irreversible damage to the health and development of young people.

“There is no such thing as a safe vape.”

“We are encouraging parents to be aware of the dangers vapes pose and to be on the lookout for devices which could look like USB sticks, pens or highlighters,” Dr Chant said.

As part of the Do You Know What You’re Vaping? awareness campaign, which NSW Health launched earlier this year, a toolkit was published for parents, school staff and others who have interactions with young people, with information and guides to have a conversation with children about the dangers of vaping.

Health Minister Brad Hazzard said evidence shows that vaping is akin to  breathing in the same harmful chemicals found in weedkiller and nail polish remover, by marketed in a way that is attractive to kids.

“The potential harm is enormous and we need to share this information with our kids,” Mr Hazzard said.

Authorities are also cracking down on the illegal sales of vapes containing nicotine.

“Earlier this year we put retailers across the state on notice, if they were selling illegal vapes, they would be caught, illegal items seized and destroyed, and they could face prosecution. We continue to make good on this commitment with NSW Health seizing more than 166,000 e-cigarette products totalling an estimated street value of over $4.6 million from February 2021 to September 2022,” Dr Chant said.

Parents and the community can provide information to inform the enforcement action at Health NSW.

Quitline counsellors are available to answer questions about vaping on 13 78 48 (13 QUIT).

Have something to say about vaping? Submit your own opinion piece, or quick word, to The Net.