National non-smoking week is not only the time to quit cigarettes, but vaping as well.
Tobacco reduction coordinator for Interior Health, Cheryl Sidenberg says in the past year they have seen a 74 percent increase in vaping and a 45 percent increase in youth smoking as well.
“The amount of nicotine in these products is extremely hight,” Sidenberg says. “The nicotine is hitting the brain very quickly and addiction is also happening very quickly. So we really need to keep nicotine and vaping products out of the hands of youth.”
Sidenberg says youth vaping rates are very high especially within Interior Health sitting at about 29 percent which translates into about 1 to 3 youth who are vaping most likely with the nicotine.
The smoking rate is approximately 16 percent in Canada and 12 percent in British Columbia.
Running every third full week in January, National Non-Smoking week focuses on helping people quit and trying to prevent others from starting. It has been observed since 1977.
(with files from Pat Matthews)