JACKSONVILLE, Fla. — A Florida teen with asthma says a vaping addition landed him in a hospital pediatric intensive care unit, WJXT reports.
Now he and his family want people to know just how dangerous vaping can be.
“I thought I was invincible,” said Dallas Pantazi, 17, the patient.
He says he was vaping every day.
“And I came home one day. I walked into my older sister’s room and she was vaping and she asked me if i wanted to try it,” Pantazi said. “I just didn’t stop and I got addicted to it and didn’t realize I was addicted to it until I was laying in the hospital bed and told I have holes in my lungs.”
He says he did it to fit in.
“I was the cool kid because I vaped but look at me now. I’m sitting in the hospital with holes in my lungs. That’s not cool to me,” Pantazi said.
His mother, Deanna Pantazi, says her son’s vaping came as a surprise to her.
“I didn’t think he was juuling at all. That was not something he was ever interested in. It was a surprise,” she said.
His father, Thom Pantazi, wants people to know how serious the problem is.
“Because when you know how serious it is, then you take it seriously and you don’t blow it off like ‘oh well that’s kids being kids.’ which is part of how I reacted. I wish i would have known. I would not have reacted in that way,” he said. “If I saw my kids playing with guns,I would have said ‘no, this stops instantly. We’re going to have a sit down and were going to get through this. There’s going to be no possibility.’ I would not allow it. I would do something, but I didn’t know and because I didn’t know, I didn’t react.”
The Food and Drug Administration has called teen vaping an epidemic.
Just this week, a sixth person in the US died from lung disease related to vaping.