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Teen girl bent over to catch her breath while running through park

Is it worth it?

Vaping can have serious consequences on the lungs, the heart, the brain and more. It can also have significant financial, environmental and social consequences.

The health consequences of vaping

Although most youth are aware of the harms and consequences of smoking cigarettes, they often underestimate the affect that vaping can have on their health and wellbeing. Vaping harms the brain, the lungs and airways, the heart and blood vessels and the teeth and skin. 

Download or print this fact sheet (PDF)

Lungs & respiratory system

  • Coughing
  • Sore throat
  • Breathlessness
  • Increased vulnerability to respiratory infections
  • Scarring of the lungs
  • Narrowing of the airways
  • Asthma or worsening asthma symptoms

Brain & nervous system

Because their brains are still developing, nicotine can cause long-term problems with:

  • cognition
  • memory
  • executive function
  • impulsivity

Heart & circulatory system

  • Faster heart rate
  • Increased blood pressure
  • Damage to blood vessels
  • Increased risk of vascular disease
  • Heavy metal build up in blood and organs

Teeth & skin

  • Dry mouth
  • Tooth decay
  • Gum diease
  • Dry skin

The financial, social and environmental costs of vaping

Vaping can affect more than just your child’s health. It can keep them from doing what they love and prevent them from reaching their goals.

Download or print this fact sheet (PDF)

Vaping can affect the skin, causing redness, inflammation, dry skin and pre-mature aging.

Vaping has also been linked to dry mouth, bad breathe, tooth decay and a buildup of dead skin cells on the tongue called “black, hairy tongue”.

Many school and community sports teams and other clubs have a code of conduct for participants. Being caught vaping may be a violation, and it could lead to your child being suspended or removed from the team or activity.

If your child is on a team or in a club that has a participant code of conduct, review the code with your child. Consider speaking to a leader, coach or team manager if it’s unclear if vaping violates the code.

Vaping and the sale of vaping products are subject to many of the same restrictions as tobacco products.

In most provinces and territories, vaping is banned on school grounds, on restaurant patios, in indoor public spaces and in private vehicles when minors are present. In some provinces, such as Ontario, vaping is banned in playgrounds, outdoor recreational facilities and at beaches.

Being caught vaping where it isn’t allowed could mean fines of hundreds of dollars.

If your child is passionate about the environment, they should be aware that vaping has serious environmental consequences.

Throwing away a vaping device means throwing away hazardous waste, electronic waste and single-use plastic waste all at the same time.

Electronic waste
Lithium in the batteries is a finite resource that could be used to create batteries for electric cars or e-bikes. It’s also flammable, and discarded vapes have caused fires in garbage bins and at waste facilities.

Hazardous waste
Nicotine salts and heavy metals, like nickel, cadmium, lead and mercury can leech into water and soil.

Single-use plastic waste
The plastic components of vaping devices eventually break down into microplastics, which can accumulate in and damage cells of living organisms.