ADHD Essentials

ADHD, Vaping, and Substance Use with Amy Leone, LMHC Addiction Expert and Owner of Community Impact, Inc.

August 30, 2019

Today, we’re talking to Amy Leone.  Amy is a mental health clinician who specializes in adolescent and youngadults with dual diagnoses, including substance abuse, and behavioral or trauma related symptoms.  I first met Amy when I joined her Juvenile Advocacy Group, a group she created to address the effects of the opioid epidemic in Milford, MA, which has become a model for many other towns throughout Massachusetts, as well as the state as a whole.  She is one of the most caring and driven people I know, and it an honor to call her my friend.

In today’s episode, Amy talks to us about vaping. What it is, why it’s so hard to catch, its connection to marijuana use, step we can take to keep our kids from doing it, and the fact that it might be a signal of the need for stress reduction and mental health supports for both kids and parents.

A quick disclaimer:  

This week’s episode is about vaping.  It touches on addiction, and the kinds of behaviors that might signal addiction.  I don’t want to panic anyone.  If your kid engages in one or two of the behaviors mentioned, that doesn’t mean they’re vaping or engaging in addictive behaviors. Sometimes our kids becoming more secretive is a perfectly healthy, developmentally appropriate way of seeking independence and setting boundaries. 

That said, the more of these behaviors you see, the more concerned you may need to be.  You can learn more about addiction and what to do if your kid might be  vaping, or using drugs or similar substances at, and


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During the course of this discussion, Amy mentions that vaping doesn't necessarily leave a smell.  She also later talks about there being a smell of marijuana from  dabbing.  This is not a contradiction, things just weren't made clear enough.  Some vaping methods leave no smell, others do.  Sometimes the smell is connected to the flavor, say strawberry.  When dabbing the smell of marijuana will typically be present, unless there are steps are taken to cover it up.


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