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One in five young people in Gwent have tried vaping

One in five 11-16 year-olds in Gwent have tried vaping, according to research by School Health Research Network.

Following the findings, the Aneurin Bevan Gwent Public Health Team have created local guidance for schools to support young people in making decisions about their health.

Professor Tracy Daszkiewicz, director for public health at Aneurin Bevan University Health Board, said: “We are seeing a frightening rise in young people who are vaping across Gwent. Recent data shows out of those who took part, 1 in 5 people aged 11 to 16 have tried vaping.

“Although some use vaping as an effective tool to help people quit the very harmful effect of tobacco, a lot of E-Cigarettes still contain highly addictive nicotine and other chemicals. We want to advise young people not to start vaping and so our message is simple – ‘Don’t Smoke? Why would you start vaping?’.”

Endorsed by the five Gwent directors for education, the Aneurin Bevan Gwent Public Health Team have produced the local guidance and resources list to support schools and colleges to be smoke-free.

Dr. Luisa Munro-Morris, interim corporate director of education for Blaenau Gwent County Borough Council, said: “Blaenau Gwent County Borough Council is keen to do all we can to help schools address the growing use of vapes or e-cigarettes by their pupils. It’s reassuring to know that the Public Health Guidance on Vaping/E-cigarettes for Schools and Colleges in Gwent has been developed by Public Health Specialists in Aneurin Bevan University Health Board and with support from young people from Platform, and it is just what’s needed.

“We have circulated the guidance to all our schools and are encouraging them to use it as part of their whole school approach to health and wellbeing and to ensure that they address youth vaping appropriately.”

The new tool will also encourage parents to have conversations with their children about vaping.

Eryl Powell, consultant lead for early years, children and young people at Aneurin Bevan University Health Board, said: “It is important to remind people that vaping is not harmless, with short-term effects of coughing, dizziness, sore throats and headaches being reported, and the long-term effects are not yet known.

“This local guidance document provides schools with the latest information to enable them to take a whole school approach to becoming smoke-free. This includes actions schools can take around vaping, as well as advice they can share with parents and the community.

“It is illegal to sell E-Cigarettes to under 18s. If you are aware of retailers in your community selling any tobacco products or e-cigarettes to children under the age of 18, please report them to Trading Standards. You can do this by visiting No Iffs No Butts.”

The 1 in 5 young people having ever tried an e-cigarette is the number of young people who responded yes to the question within the survey which equates to 4,773 people.



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One in five young people in Gwent have tried vaping

a hand holding some vapes