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The original item was published from 5/30/2019 3:42:08 PM to 6/18/2019 10:36:57 AM.

News Flash


Posted on: May 30, 2019

[ARCHIVED] Community Forum to Focus on Vaping Among Youth

Juul pen smoke

Electronic cigarettes, otherwise known as e-cigarettes or vapes, have become extremely popular among young people in recent years. The National Youth Tobacco Survey showed an alarming 78% increase in vaping from just 11% in 2017 to 20.8% in 2018.

It’s a national issue, but it’s also important to realize vaping is occurring among youth in Douglas County.

Join the Lawrence-Douglas County Health Department, Lawrence Public Schools, The Boys and Girls Club of Lawrence, the University of Kansas Cancer Center and LiveWell Douglas County for a community forum, Vaping Among youth in Douglas County: What You Need to Know, 5:30-7 p.m., Monday, June 17, at the Lawrence Public Library, 707 Vermont St. The forum will include health information from a medical expert, personal experiences from youth with vaping, and a discussion about tackling this issue.

A key part of the issue is though vapes are marketed as being less addictive and healthier than cigarettes, one Juul brand vape pod contains as much nicotine as 20 cigarettes. Studies show that 66% of teens believe vapes contain only flavoring and no nicotine, and in 2018, 1 in 5 high school students reported using an e-cigarette.

Nationally, 30.7% of teen e-cigarette users started smoking within 6 months compared to 8.1% of non-users, and 90% of lifelong tobacco users start use before the age of 21.  Exposure to nicotine during adolescence has been shown to increase risk for cognitive issues later in life, and research from Washington State shows that students who reported vaping and tobacco use may be at increased risk for other behavioral health issues.

In Kansas, nearly 1 in 5 high school students regularly use some type of tobacco product (cigarettes, e-cigarettes, vaping, chewing tobacco), and 1 in 3 have tried an e-cigarette.  The prevalence of use combined with the lack of consumer information has led to a public health crisis both nationally and here in Douglas County.

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