Vaping is becoming an increasing epidemic among teens. In 2018, e-cigarette use nearly doubled in high school students. Last year, nearly one in five high school students reported using e-cigarettes, while one in 20 middle school students reported using e-cigarettes. The U.S. Surgeon General estimated that nearly 6 million children will die prematurely in adulthood if current trends continue.

RELATED: 21-year-old from Brooklyn Park among those suffering lung damage linked to vaping

There’s a perception out there that e-cigarettes aren’t as harmful as traditional cigarettes. Though, one pod contains as much nicotine as a pack of 20 regular cigarettes. Nicotine is a highly addictive substance and can harm the developing adolescent brain.

Parents can talk with your kids about the dangers of smoking and the importance of avoiding any tobacco use.

The American Heart Association is working with partners and advocates to raise the legal age to purchase tobacco to 21. Increasing the minimum legal sale age for tobacco products to 21 would reduce our youth’s access to, and use of, tobacco products. Over 40 communities in Minnesota have adopted tobacco 21 legislation. Learn more about getting involved at www.yourethecure.org.

RELATED: Juul warned by FDA over claims its e-cigarette is safer than smoking