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How to Talk to People You Love About Vaping: Conversation Starters and Insights 

We’ve seen a dramatic rise in vaping in the past few years, especially among young people. If someone you love is vaping, it can be tough to start a conversation about it without causing conflict. This guide will help you approach the topic thoughtfully and provide insights that can inspire change. 

Why Talking About Vaping is Important

Vaping can damage many parts of the body, including the cardiovascular system, lungs and airways, and the brain and nervous system (vaping can particularly harm the developing brain). Understanding these risks as well as understanding why your loved one vapes can empower you to talk about vaping in a helpful way. 

Conversation Starters

two men sitting on a park bench in conversation

Express Concern, Not Judgement

  • "I’ve been reading about vaping and how it impacts the body. I’m worried about your health and want to understand more about why you vape." 

  • "I know it can be hard to talk about vaping because of how people might react, but I'm here to listen. I won’t judge you." 

Ask Open-ended Questions

  • "How do you feel about your vaping? What do you enjoy about it?" 

  • "How did you start vaping?" 

Share Information

  • "Did you know vaping delivers toxic chemicals like formaldehyde straight into your lungs? It can cause lung damage that leads to short breath and chest pain. I came across an article that I think you'd find interesting."

  • “Have you heard of Quitline? They support people who are looking to quit or are just looking to better understand their vaping. There are multiple ways to contact them like WhatsApp, Messenger or you can call them as well.”

  • "Have you checked out the My QuitBuddy app? It’s a free app that helps you get and stay vape free."

Relate to Their Experiences

  • "I remember struggling with smoking. It was tough, but talking about it really helped me. How do you feel about your vaping?"

  • “When my cousin quit vaping, they were struggling a bit but they ended up changing their daily routine and found it helped their cravings. Do you think there’s any routine changes that might help you?”

  • "I get why you might vape—it can feel like a way to deal with stress or fit in. Let's find other, healthy ways together."

Point out most people want to quit

  • "It might seem like everyone is vaping, but most (young) people who vape actually want to quit."

Offer Support

  • "I’m here for you if you ever want to talk or need help with quitting. We can find resources together."

  • “Always here for a chat or distraction if you need one!”

Insights and Tips

  1. Understand the appeal

People who vape may have started vaping for lots of different reasons. It might be due to peer pressure, stress relief, or the misbelief that it's less harmful than smoking. Understanding these reasons can help you approach the conversation more effectively. 

  1. Educate Yourself

Learn about the risks of vaping and the latest research. This will help you provide accurate information and answer any questions your loved one might have.

  1. Create a Supportive Environment

Encourage open dialogue without judgment. Let your loved one know you’re concerned about their health and want to support them in taking positive action for their wellbeing.

  1. Be Patient and Persistent

Change doesn’t happen overnight. Be patient and persistent, offering your support and understanding as they navigate their journey.

  1. Seek Professional Help

If the conversation feels too difficult or if your loved one is resistant, consider seeking help from a healthcare professional or a Quitline counsellor. 

Talking to someone you love about vaping can be challenging, but it’s an important step in helping them take positive action for their wellbeing. By approaching the conversation with kindness, understanding, and the right information, you can support your loved one in the journey towards better health and a vape free future.

Please note,this information is for general use only.  Please consult your health professional for further advice.  

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Last updated July 2024

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