Despite some promising signs that traditional tobacco cigarette use is decreasing among teenagers, unacceptably high numbers of youth are vaping nicotine. NIDA’s 2019 Monitoring the Future Survey of eighth, 10th, and 12th graders show alarmingly high rates of e-cigarette use compared to just a year ago.
Reported past month nicotine vaping among teens in 2019:
- 1 in 10 8th graders
- 1 in 5 10th graders
- 1 in 4 12th graders
It is important for teens to know that most health concerns related to traditional tobacco cigarettes—addiction, lung disease, and effects on prenatal development—apply to vaping as well.
The most popular e-cigarette devices among young people resemble flash drives. Parents and teachers are often unaware their teens are using these devices because they are so small and don’t leave behind a strong smell, like tobacco cigarettes.
Read More About Vaping (E-Cigarettes), Nicotine, and Tobacco
We must be vigilant about educating teens on the health effects of tobacco and nicotine in all forms. Some research suggests that teens using e-cigarettes are likely to start smoking tobacco within the following year, since nicotine in vaping devices is highly addictive. In addition, there have been reports of serious lung illnesses and dozens of deaths from vaping. Most of the vaping products contained THC, the ingredient in marijuana that causes the high, but some contained only nicotine. The illnesses could possibly be related to oil some manufacturers have added to the vaping liquid.
Manufacturers have added mint and other flavors to vaping pods, which have become popular among teens. However, the largest device manufacturer, JUUL, recently announced it would no longer sell mint-flavored pods in the U.S. This is in response to NIDA-funded research showing the popularity of that flavor among teens, and criticism from public health experts that it was marketing its products to teens.
- Teen e-cigarette use doubles since 2017 (News Release, September 18, 2019)
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The Latest News
- New Data on Vaping and Teen Drug Use (EVERFI's Interview with NIDA's Dr. Emily Einstein and Brian Marquis, February 2020)
- NIH-funded study finds teens prefer mint and mango vaping flavors (November 05, 2019)
- Teen Prevention: Prescription Drug Safety & Vaping (EVERFI's Interview with NIDA's Dr. Ruben Baler and Brian Marquis, October 2019)
- Teen e-cigarette use doubles since 2017 (September 18, 2019)
- FDA warns JUUL Labs for marketing unauthorized modified risk tobacco products, including in outreach to youth (September 09, 2019)
Reports of Deaths Related to Vaping
The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has alerted the public to thousands of reports of serious lung illnesses associated with vaping, including dozens of deaths. They’re working with the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) to investigate the cause of these illnesses. Many of the suspect products tested by the states or federal health officials have been identified as vaping products containing THC, the main psychotropic (mind-altering) ingredient in marijuana. Some of the patients reported vaping a mixture of THC and nicotine; and some reported vaping nicotine alone. (For more details, read this blog post.) While the CDC and FDA continue to investigate possible other contributing substances, CDC has identified a thickening agent—Vitamin E acetate—as a chemical of concern among people with e-cigarette or vaping associated lung injuries. They recommend that people should not use any product containing Vitamin E acetate, or any vaping products containing THC; particularly from informal sources like friends, family, or in-person and online dealers. They also warn against modifying any products purchased in stores, or using any vaping products bought on the street. The FDA is asking people, including health professionals, to report any adverse (negative) effects of vaping products. The CDC has posted an information page for consumers.
Research and Statistics
- Monitoring the Future Study: Trends in Prevalence of Various Drugs Table
- National Survey of Drug Use and Health, Trends in Prevalence of Various Drugs Table (Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration's (SAMHSA))
- National Youth Tobacco Survey (Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and U.S. Food and Drug Administration)
- Surgeon General’s Report on Preventing Tobacco Use Among Youth and Young Adults (U.S. Department of Health and Human Services)
- Smoking & Tobacco Use: Data & Statistics (Centers for Disease Control and Prevention)
For more statistics on teen drug abuse, see NIDA’s Monitoring the Future study.
Multimedia and Interactive Resources
Materials, including booklets and educational posters, can be ordered directly from the NIDA clearinghouse in advance of your NDAFW event. To ensure materials arrive in time, please order them no later than 2 weeks prior to your event or activity.
Promoting your young adult focused event for National Drug and Alcohol Facts Week® has never been easier! NIDA’s Promote with Online Toolkit section has everything you need to generate buzz for your event. And for help planning your event, visit NIDA’s 5 Steps to Hosting an NDAFW Event and the Get Activity Ideas & Toolkits page. NDAFW 2021 will be March 22-28.
Find an Expert: If you choose to have a alcohol expert at your event or promotional activity, use these tips for finding the right person: Adult Advisors and Sponsors for National Drug and Alcohol Facts Week®.
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Select NIDA content is available for you to use on your own site. Through HHS Syndication Storefront, you may promote this high quality content on your website and it will take on the look and feel of your site. This syndicated content will also update content in real time, leaving you free from having to perform manual updates.