The Top 8 Things the Industry Does to Encourage Youth to Use E-Cigarettes
Between 2011 and 2015 e-cigarette use among high school students grew by 900 percent becoming the most commonly used form of tobacco among youth in the United States. In December 2016, the Surgeon General released a report concluding that e-cigarette use in youth and young adults is a major public health concern. Maybe kids just think e-cigarettes are cool, but the e-cigarette industry has been using a number of strategies, many previously used by the tobacco industry, to get kids to try their products:
The industry is using the same playbook to hook youth on e-cigarettes that they used to hook kids on cigarettes.*
Fruit and candy are the most popular flavors- 85 percent of e-cigarette users between 12 and 17 use flavors. What kid would pass up chocolate, bubble gum and candy?
All the ads!
Over 50 percent of youth have seen e-cigarette ads on TV, not to mention Twitter, Facebook, YouTube…*
But all the cool kids are doing it...
E-cigarette companies are using corporate sponsorships, like NASCAR, to improve their image.*
Eat your vegetables
E-cigarette companies are falsely advertising that their products are healthy, encouraging kids to try their product, which is not healthy.*
Money Money Money
Using discounts and coupons to get kids to try e-cigarettes, but in true 21st century fashion, they are reaching out directly through Twitter to get to the kids.*
Who is that?
Online vendors and sales easily allow youth to pose as adults to access e-cigarettes.
It’s all fun and games...
Vape shops host “cloud chasing competitions” which encourages e-cigarette use.
For a more information on youth and e-cigarettes, check out the 2016 Surgeon General's Report – "E-Cigarette Use Among Youth and Young Adults: A Report of the Surgeon General."
*Images courtesy of TrinketsAndTrash.org.
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- More than 1 in 4 high school students in the U.S. use at least one tobacco product, including e-cigarettes, according to the 2015 National Youth Tobacco Survey.
- 7.4 percent of middle school students use at least one tobacco product, including e-cigarettes.
- A 2014 article in the Journal of the American Medical Association found that about 8 million lives have been saved through tobacco control efforts since 1964, including 800,000 lung cancer deaths between 1975 and 2000.
- Smoking is the number one preventable cause of death in the U.S., killing over 480,000 people per year.
- Secondhand smoke kills more than 41,000 people in the U.S. each year.
- 28 states and Washington D.C. have passed laws making almost all public places and workplaces, including restaurants and bars smokefree.
- New York has the highest cigarette tax in the country at $4.35 per pack.
- Missouri has the lowest cigarette tax in the country at 17 cents per pack.
- The average of all states plus the District of Columbia's cigarette taxes are $1.65 per pack.
- Eight states have taxes on other tobacco products equivalent to their state's cigarette taxes.
- Alaska and North Dakota are the only states that are funding their tobacco control programs at or above the CDC-recommended level (in Fiscal Year 2017).
- Four states increased their cigarette taxes in 2016.
- No state approved a comprehensive smokefree workplace law in 2016.
- 8 states – California, Connecticut, Indiana, Maine, Massachusetts, Missouri, North Dakota and Ohio – offer a comprehensive cessation benefit to tobacco users on Medicaid.
- Each of the 50 states and the District of Columbia provide tobacco quitlines, a phone number for quit smoking phone counseling. The average amount states invest in quitlines is $3.46 per smoker in the state.
- California and the District of Columbia passed legislation increasing their minimum sales ages for tobacco products to 21 in 2016.
- California, Hawaii and over 200 communities in 14 different states have passed Tobacco 21 laws.
- Nationwide, the Medicaid program spends more than $22 billion in healthcare costs for smoking-related diseases each year – more than 11 percent of total Medicaid spending.
- In 2009, the American Lung Association played a key role in the passage of the Family Smoking Prevention and Tobacco Control Act, which gives the U.S. Food and Drug Administration authority over tobacco products.
- The American Lung Association played a key role in airplanes becoming smokefree in the 1990s.
- 41 states and Washington D.C. spend less than half of what the CDC recommends on their state tobacco prevention programs.
- States spend less than two cents of every dollar they get from tobacco settlement payments and tobacco taxes to fight tobacco use.
- Each day, close to 2,500 kids under 18 try their first cigarette and about 400 kids become new, regular smokers.
- Each day, more than 2,100 kids try their first cigar. On average, close to 90 kids try their first cigar every hour in the United States – equaling more than 780,000 every year.
- Smoking costs the U.S. economy over $332 billion in direct health care costs and lost productivity every year.
- The five largest cigarette companies spent over $23 million dollars per day marketing their products in 2014.
- Secondhand smoke causes $5.6 billion in lost productivity in the U.S. each year.
- Smoking rates are over twice as high for Medicaid recipients compared to those with private insurance.
- A 2013 study of California's tobacco prevention program shows that the state saved $55 in healthcare costs for every $1 invested from 1989 to 2008.
- A 2012 study of Massachusetts' comprehensive Medicaid quit smoking benefit found that Massachusetts saved $3 for every $1 spent helping smokers quit in just over a year.
- Missouri became the first state to eliminate all barriers to receiving tobacco cessation treatments for its Medicaid enrollees.