It is extremely concerning that electronic cigarettes are targeting our youth through lack of regulations, marketing and advertising.
So, what do I mean by "lack of regulations"? Because there is not a lot of laws and regulations on the selling of e-cigarettes, they are being sold to minors, making false claims on there packaging and participating in marketing and advertising these products.
Tobacco advertising was banned in the 1970's however, this does not pertain to e-cigarettes! Due to the lack of regulation on these products, e-cigarettes can be marketed to anyone from television to social media. With the exponential growth of social media and its young users, this industry now has even more outlets to market to our youth then ever before. In 2014, tobacco companies spent $115 million on e-cigarettes which aided in millions of teens to try vaping.
The advertisements that are being used for vape products resemble all too familiar with the old tobacco cigarette ads that caused millions of people to start smoking original cigarettes (which we later found to cause heart disease, cancers, high cholesterol, etc.) The tobacco companies are using these advertisements because they know they worked in the past! Former celebrities were used to sponsor cigarettes and we are now seeing todays celebrities and figures youth look up to on electronic cigarette ads. These ads are also targeting the youth by creating images that their customers are going to become more attractive, thinner, or prettier, etc. You are seeing advertisements at sporting events, concerts, music festivals and more. Giveaways are being handed out with branding for youth to use and produce free advertisement.
Other examples of targeted advertisements is how they are trying to normalize the product and making it look like an everyday item (such as a flash drive or a pen), comparing the product to candy and cocktails, even making false claims to trick you into thinking the product is healthy.
All this information and much more are proof that these targeted advertisements are working!
More youth are starting their nicotine addiction using E-cigarettes than traditional cigarettes.
That means, if e-cigarettes never existed, there is such a high possibility that those teens would have never touched a traditional cigarette and would have no dependence to nicotine whatsoever. Shame on Big Tobacco. Shame.
Visit us again on Wednesday to learn more about Big Tobacco and how they are connected to these advertisements and e-cigarettes.
"E-cigarette Ads and Youth" Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, 05 Jan. 2016. Web. 2 Feb. 2017. <https://www.cdc.gov/vitalsigns/wcigarette-ads/>
Before reading on, ask yourself this...Why do you think teens and young adults are vaping?
If you can't think of any reasons, do you think flavors could be a factor? What about outside influences from friends and family members? Maybe because its "cool", safe?, fun?, smells and tastes good, because they are addicted, influenced by celebrities and role models, its cheap, trendy, easily accessible, helps relax them and fit in?
All these answers would be correct.
Now, let me ask you this, "If I were to ask you why people started smoking regular cigarettes, what might be some of your reasons? Are they the same reasons why teens are vaping? Is it history repeating itself?"
There were over 15,000 e-cigarette flavors on the market including dessert, fruit, candy, mint and other flavors. The only reason I say "were" is because the state of New Jersey banned the sale of flavored vaping products in January of 2020. This did not include menthol and tobacco-flavored products. Before this ban teens were being enticed by all these flavors and in turn producing an addiction to the nicotine hidden inside, which we will address in a later post. These enticing flavors were targeting our youth to purchase. Matter of fact, they still are. Although the ban on flavors was enacted in 2020, stores are still selling these leftover products if they still have them in stock.
Teens are being influenced by the lack of regulation, marketing, celebrity endorsement, and more!
Check back in on Monday for a breakdown on how big tobacco is targeting our youth!
E-cigarettes are battery powered vaporizers originally used to inhale liquid nicotine.
Inside of an E-cigarette is a battery that heats the liquid, which then produces "vapor"
These "vapors" are actually, aerosol! In other words...when your inhaling aerosol you are essentially inhaling hairspray (which is an aerosol). So, what is the difference between the two?
Vapor is a liquid that becomes a gas, whereas aerosol is a liquid that remains a liquid in tiny droplet form.
Since they were first invented in 2003, E-cigarettes have evolved over the years. They used to look like real cigarettes called cig-a-like. These early E-cigarettes were disposable after a one time use. When they started to gain popularity they morphed into different variations like vape pens, mods, and pod-based e-cigarettes (like Juul). As they morphed, E-cigarettes became more convenient and appealing for young users . This birthed the rechargeable and refillable models used today. They are even sold now to look like everyday items like USB's to normalize the use of these products & help disguise them when using in school and work.
Resources for this article are in part by the CDC, FDA and the NHIS
It's no secret that vaping is an issue. At least not to me.
Clearly, the youth and even adults using electronic cigarettes (vape pens, Juul pods, mods, cig-a-like) do not know the data or the facts to the dangers of using these devices.
Today's post is going to highlight some of these data points and facts.
Follow along for the next few weeks to discuss with me other topics on youth and adult vaping including: "What are electronic cigarettes?" , "How and why did they become so popular?" , "What are the potential health risks and concerns?" , "Am I being targeted to use these products?" ...and many more!
At this point, you might be wondering... "What is the data and facts?" well, here they are:
According to the findings from New Jersey Department of Health, the CDC and the FDA's National Youth Tobacco Survey..
- "The US cigarette smoking rate among youth have significantly decreased over the past decade. The current smoking rate for High School students in New Jersey is 5%."
So, if you are thinking that, that sounds pretty low! You would be right. But why is it so low? Because youth are not smoking cigarettes anymore. THEY ARE VAPING.
-"In 2007 Electronic Nicotine Delivery Systems (or Vapes) were introduced to the US and over the past 10 years, use of these devises has skyrocketed to almost 21% of US High School students in 2018"
-"Teens that initiate use of vapes are more likely to start using other tobacco products like hookah, cigars, and cigarettes. 65% of youth who had used an e-cig in the last 30 days also reported using another tobacco product in the same time frame."
-"Popular to contrary belief, there is no sufficient evidence leading towards the use of e-cigarettes helping people quit smoking regular cigarettes."
These are only a handful of facts about the use of electronic cigarettes. I have not even breached the surface.
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