Less than two months after the state legalized recreational marijuana for adults 21 and older, the New York City Department of Health has reportedly warned doctors about the rise in youth smoking pot. .

in email received by New York Post To city public health officials, DOH chief medical officer Michelle Morse warned that nearly 1 in 5 students admit to smoking – a trend followed by e-cigarettes.

“Many of them have just shifted to weed in a smoking pot,” said Dr. Cathy Ward, a pediatrician at Big Apple Pediatrics. “And a lot of them were smoking e-cigarettes and hookah and Juul. I think the availability of it is appealing to them. It has different flavors and it’s being marketed to them. So I guess That’s why it’s all shifted.”

Ward said doctors should take a proactive approach to talking to children about smoking during routine checkups.

Receive breaking news alerts in the Granthshala News app. Download for free!

“It never hurts to even say to a 7 year old or 10 year old, like, hey, you know, smoking is bad for you. It dirty your lungs and makes your teeth and your breath smelly . Your teeth are yellow. So it’s never too early to start,” Ward said.

When the kids get older, Ward has another strategy.

Ward said, “You can just flat out ask them, hey, do your friends smoke? I always ask what their friends smoke first because if their friends do that they are.” ” “But if they’re like, oh no, I don’t hang around kids doing that. Then they’re much less likely to be smokers themselves.”

Ward cautions that children are especially vulnerable to nicotine dependence, which can occur with occasional use. Nicotine can also affect the way the teen brain processes other drugs such as alcohol, cannabis and cocaine.