ST. LOUIS – According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, vaping among middle school and high school students continues to rise. That's despite numerous medical studies showing the dangers, even resulting in several deaths.
Students at Parkway South High School are trying to stop the trend. However, they also say it’s an uphill battle right now.
“It’s been a little difficult because it’s been the norm around high schools to vape,” said Anna Sukhera, a senior at Parkway South and a member of the group Teen Voice for Change. “It’s the cool thing, especially at parties. People vape all the time.”
The Parkway South High School group Teen Voice for Change is part of an informational meeting at Parkway West Middle School at 6 p.m. Wednesday. They say most students have tried vaping. And at least 35 percent of high schoolers are doing it weekly.
“It’s so common you can go to the bathrooms during passing periods and you will see people in the stalls, in their sleeves, vaping. It’s the perfect place to do it,” said Asad Siddiqut, a senior at Parkway South.
The legal purchase age of vaping products in Missouri is 18 but students and doctors say many middle schoolers are vaping and parents need to start being more involved in the decisions being made. Nicotine is consumed while vaping and it's a highly addictive chemical.
“When people go into depression they vape, so it’s common because it helps them with stress,” said Loran Aladdin, Parkway South senior. “So when you're trying to educate people or not to vape, they tend to not listen because they are using it for their own personal benefit.”