It’s the nicotine that helps her stay focused in her classes.
School is stressful, she said, and the buzz from her Juul helps her get through her day.
Miya Blythe, a junior studying strategic communications and global and international studies, is one of many University of Kansas students thinking about quitting their e-cigarette or vaping product, after recent reports started showing the dangers of using it.
She’s tried quitting in the past month or two, but she said she feels physically ill whenever she tries to quit.
“Almost everyone I know vapes,” Blythe said. “I believe that vaping isn’t as dangerous as they say.”
Vaping and e-cigarette use has caught on rapidly in the United States. And while the use of vaping products has increased, so has national concern over the use of vaping products.
The Kansas Health Department said Tuesday a Kansas resident died from a lung disease related to the use of e-cigarette or vaping products, the Kansan previously reported. Lawrence Memorial Hospital said it had one case with a patient last month that hospital officials attributed to vaping.
President Donald Trump said he's considering banning flavored vaping products due to its recently reported dangers, USA Today reported Wednesday.
From 2011-17, “e-cigarette use significantly increased among youth in high school and middle school,” according to True Initiative, a non-profit focused on informing youth about tobacco products. In 2017, 11.7% of high school students and 3.3% of middle school students used e-cigarettes within the past 30 days, according to the non-profit.
Macey Clark, a freshman from Silver Lake, said she’s concerned e-cigarettes will become just as dangerous for young people as traditional cigarettes were for older generations.
“They tried to make it more fun and palatable to young people,” Clark said. “I think it’s a problem that’s going to be ignored until it becomes a whole generation of people [affected] just like cigarettes.”
Kansas health officials are urging vaping to stop until the exact causes of these vaping-related deaths are found. However, some students aren’t worried about the recent news.
Chase Todd, a junior studying political science and business, said he believes more information is necessary for there to be any change made.
“I feel like it’s way too early to tell about anything,” Todd said. “It’s never going to truly stop until they come out with the research that says this is exactly what it’s doing to you.”
For other students, they’re worried about the effects, but unsure about the validity of recent reports.
“Yeah, I have no clue because I hear some people [say], ‘Oh, nobody knows the effects.’ And then some people are like, ‘Oh, people are dying from it,’” said Andrew Deaver, a senior studying computer science. “So I'm not sure if it's true or not. It's hard to really trust the news on these things nowadays.”
Jack DiMarco, a sophomore studying business, said his girlfriend used vaping products, but recently stopped. Her friends recently stopped too.
DiMarco urged students who are hooked on vaping or e-cigarette products to stop.
“Ask yourself why you’re doing it,” DiMarco said. “If it’s an addiction, do you really want that addiction in your life? And how far are you down that oath already? Can you stop now, or will you just stay on it?”