Middle school students alarmed at the dangers of vaping

West Virginia

"Honestly, I was just unaware."

CHARLES TOWN, W.Va. (WDVM)– Officials at the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention are currently investigating a lung injury outbreak that they believe is associated with e-cigarettes or vaping use. Now, middle school students are seeing the dangers up close.

Shepherd University nursing students stepped in to speak with 8th graders at Charles Town Middle School first hand. Only three hands out of the entire grade went up when the young students were prompted with the question, ‘how many people don’t know anyone who vapes?’

“I know like 40 to 50 who vape just in our middle school,” said CTMS Student Leah Sites.

Many of the students said they were aware of the dangers, but Wednesday’s lecture brought those dangers into reality.

“I learned that it cut some of the circulatory flow throughout your body, I did not think that it did.” said CTMS Student Ben Caltrider. “I was unaware.”

The nursing students participated in a lengthy question and answer session afterwards, and the main point of discussion was the fact that vaping is known to affect more than just your lungs.

“It can lead to a lifetime of addiction of nicotine as well as a lifetime implication of health problems, chronic pulmonary illness as well cardiovascular.” said Shepherd Student Samuel Shifflitt. “It affects the entire body.”

The CDC reports 2,000 cases across the country of perfectly healthy people developing serious lung diseases, authorities believe many of these cases are linked to vaping.

“I learned that it had a longer effect than I thought it would.” said CTMS Student Haley Frazier. “So if you vape at a very young age, it can affect you when you’re like 22 when you least expect it.”

According to CDC, vaping and e-cigarettes have claimed the lives of 47 Americans so far.

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