Teen vaping rates may be lower than initially suspected
While teen vaping rates have increased in recent years, mainly due to the popularization of e-cigarettes, a new study suggests that very few middle school and high school students actually vape or smoke regularly.
According to a new study in Nicotine & Tobacco Research, over 80% of youth do not consume tobacco products and over 86% do not vape. Furthermore, the majority of youth that do vape are either current smokers or former smokers.
This study is particularly interesting, as it underscores “the importance of examining the full context of how youth are using vaping and tobacco products,” according to Allison Glasser, an assistant research scientist at the School of Global Public Health at New York University.
Confiscated California cannabis pens contain dangerous additives
In a raid last month, several cannabis vape pens were seized from a shop in Los Angeles. These pens were later tested for potentially dangerous additives, including a substance linked to the EVALI outbreak.
The testing later indicated that some of the 10,000 confiscated cartridges contained dangerous additives and serve as a reminder to the dangers of unlicensed cannabis retailers.
According to the state of California, 75% of the cartridges had undisclosed chemicals, including vitamin E acetate. Vitamin E acetate is the thickening agent blamed for the EVALI outbreak, which has killed 60 people since Spring 2019.
Juul Labs will stop selling flavoured pods in Canada
Announced earlier this month, Juul Labs — a world leader in the e-cigarettes market — will soon cease the production and sale of flavoured pods in Canada. While the company will not be pulling items off shelves, they will not be offering restocks once they’ve sold out.
Both tobacco and mint flavoured pods will still be available in Canada once the other flavours have sold out.
New FDA chief announces tougher action on youth vaping
Stephen Hahn, the newly appointed head of the Food and Drug Administration, recently defended the Trump administration’s impending partial e-cigarette ban. While Hahn did come out in support of the impending legislation, he also vowed to take tougher steps to reduce teen vaping if necessary.
Set to take effect on February 6, 2020, the new vaping ban will bar the sales of most flavoured e-cigarette pods, with the exception of menthol and tobacco pods, as well as bottled e-liquids for open-tank systems. Critics of this ban have noted that this will do little to stop young people from vaping and will allow young people to simply switch products that remain on shelves.
While Hahn agreed that this ban will target the products most popular with young people, he also mentioned that the FDA will closely monitor the situation. If the FDA notices young people switching to menthol-flavoured vapes or other e-cigarette products, the government agency will take further action to curb youth vaping.
A California high school is installing vaping sensors on school grounds
In an attempt to curb youth vaping, Lopez High School in Arroyo Grande will be installing vaping sensors on school grounds. The school has already announced that four sensors will be installed in four bathrooms, which will reportedly be able to detect a set of chemicals that come from vaping.
Once a sensor has been tripped, it will “ping” administrators to check the bathroom where the student is vaping. The purchase of the sensors was made possible thanks to a grant the school received aimed at helping improve schools in troubled areas. The sensors will total approximately $5,159.52.
Ultimately, school officials believe that these sensors will provide an opportunity to not only lower suspension rates due to vaping, but as a chance to educate students on the dangers of vaping.