NEW YORK (WABC) -- A much larger percentage of youth and young adults use e-cigarettes compared to older adults.
Across New York State, nearly one in five high school students used vapes as of 2022, with the majority saying they intended to quit.
Currently, the Department of Health is launching a "DropTheVape" campaign with posters promoting a confidential text-based service along with the New York State Smokers' Quitline.
In a national survey, middle school and high school students said they first tried e-cigarettes because a friend used them, coupled with curiosity.
The most common reasons they continue to vape are to deal with anxiety, stress, depression, and to get the buzz from nicotine.
Most e-liquids contain nicotine which can harm the developing brains of young adults by leading to lower impulse control, disrupting attention and learning, and increasing the risk for future drug addictions.
"Exposure to nicotine during adolescence can cause addiction and damage to the developing adolescent brain, lungs, and overall health," State Health Commissioner Dr. James McDonald said. "The Department remains committed to decreasing vaping among young people and providing them with the resources that will help keep them informed, healthy, and safe."
"DropTheVape" is a free, confidential service based on evidence about young students who vape. The messages show the benefits and challenges of quitting to help young people feel motivated, inspired, and supported throughout their quitting process.
To date, the initiative has helped over 600,000 young people across the nation on their quitting journey.
The service can be accessed by texting DropTheVape to 88709.