Youth vaping set to continue despite order against Juul | Health issues


WATERTOWN — The Jefferson County Youth Alliance says a marketing denial for Juul will not alleviate the youth vaping epidemic.

In 2020, Juul Labs voluntarily halted sales of its fruit and other flavored products after a backlash over rising youth vaping rates. But the company had submitted four tobacco and menthol flavored products for Food and Drug Administration clearance. After a roughly two-year review of the applications, the FDA on June 23 ordered Juul to remove its remaining products from the market, saying the company had provided insufficient or conflicting data about the potential risks of using its products. products.

Juul Labs has been granted a temporary stay of the order banning its products and is seeking an extension in court. Juul claims the FDA overlooked the company’s data when reviewing its applications.

Tammie J. Nabywaniec, director of the Youth Alliance of Jefferson County, said a removal of Juul products from the market is unlikely to curb vaping because there are other types of highly addictive “disposable” devices to high nicotine content, flavors, colorful packaging and a much larger number of puffs, all for a relatively low price.

Flavored vaping devices were removed from students in local school districts this spring. Rachel Burt/Watertown Daily

In a recent spring take-back campaign with four local school districts, 160 devices were collected and donated to the Youth Alliance. Of these, 133 were nicotine devices. Only 21 were Juul devices. Nineteen contained some form of marijuana and eight were non-manufactured devices, referred to as “homebrews”.

“I think it’s important for people to realize that Juul just isn’t the most used device anymore,” Ms. Nabywaniec said. “Kids made adjustments very quickly because they have access to social media, which tells them which devices are the best and cheapest. They got there faster than parents, community members – even before we can prepare.

With Juul devices, the liquid cartridges can be removed and discarded separately. With new vaping products being marketed as “disposable” this is not an option as they are one piece with no moving parts, which Ms Nabywaniec called a huge environmental concern. While Juuls typically have around 200 puffs per cartridge, these so-called “disposable” devices have a puff count of 2,500 to 5,000 and come in a variety of flavors.

Nabywaniec said she and the Youth Alliance gave presentations on youth vaping to local and state officials, the Jefferson County attorney, the county district attorney and representatives of Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration.

On Wednesday, Ms. Nabywaniec hosted a Zoom meeting with local, regional and state organizations for a conversation about how to tackle youth vaping.

Participants from the North Country at Wednesday’s Zoom included representatives from Pivot, the Watertown Police Department, the Watertown Regional Office of the State Attorney General, the Alliance for Better Communities, the Watertown City Council, public health officials from Jefferson and St. Lawrence counties, the Jefferson County Board of Legislators, the Fort Drum Army Volunteer Corps, Jefferson County Probation, the Watertown Family YMCA and local school districts. Members of SAMHSA and representatives from out-of-state health departments and communities also participated.

The end of Juul sales does not seem to alleviate the epidemic

According to Tammie J. Nabywaniec, director of the Youth Alliance of Jefferson County, flavored vaping devices taken from students in local school districts this spring indicate that they are being sold locally. Rachel Burt/Watertown Daily

The groups focus on disposal methods; address ease of purchase online and in person; combat illegal shipment of devices through the US Postal Service; and the FDA’s continued move to regulate other products. This includes monitoring nicotine salts, flavored vape juices, and concentrations of nicotine or other substances available on the market.

“I think talking to everyone, what I would see is bringing forward a monthly meeting where we can sort of take stock of where we are in our own individual communities, but also divide ourselves,” said Mrs Nabywaniec. “It will allow us to kind of go forward in different communities and then be able to identify who wants to work on the environmental side and who wants to work on the mining side in those components. Maybe it’s something we’ve been working on for months, maybe longer.

The latest vapes are called disposable or “single-use” and cannot be refilled once all the puffs are gone. As these are the primary devices used by youth and young adults, the local committee is focusing on regulating and enforcing single-use devices.

Mailing electronic nicotine devices results in misdemeanor charges and a fine of up to $5,000, or $100 per vaping product. The devices are mostly sent through the US Postal Service, Ms. Nabywaniec said.

She said she meets once a month with local school resource officials and will begin to inventory what they have collected and publish a summary of the results quarterly.

The goal is to enforce restrictions and make vaping devices inaccessible to young people. Ms Nabywaniec said her group at the Youth Alliance will work this summer to develop support programs and information on how to manage withdrawals to share in the fall with parents, young people, schools and members of the community.

“If our kids are telling us anything, it’s that taking the product out isn’t working, that they really need quit help and support,” she said. “So that will be another path that we are working on from our side.”

The end of Juul sales does not seem to alleviate the epidemic

Flavored vaping devices were removed from students in local school districts this spring. Rachel Burt/Watertown Daily

Online companies, like Hyde, promote a rewards system, discreet and free delivery, a menu of flavors and other incentives, with only one click required for a website visitor to declare that they have at least 21 years old. But flavored vapes are also sold in stores even though their sale is illegal in New York.

Ms Nabywaniec said one of the concerning features of single-use vapes is that they cannot be recycled because, unlike Juul devices, the liquid cartridges cannot be safely removed for disposal. Still, they are popular for a variety of reasons, including puffs versus price. A Juul has around 200 puffs per cartridge, which can cost $5-7 each. Devices labeled as “disposable” have 2,500 to 5,000 puffs and cost between $10 and $20.

“There is no legislation in place at the moment for this, and there is no legal provision,” Ms Nabywaniec said. “They pay attention to Juuls and things like that. No one pays attention to what our children actually use.

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, the most common reason for trying e-cigarettes given by middle and high school students in the United States is “a friend used them.” The most common reason given by young people for continuing to use electronic cigarettes is “I feel anxious, stressed or depressed”. In 2021, most youth who reported using e-cigarettes used flavored varieties, 84.7%. Among middle and high school students who used any type of flavored e-cigarette in 2021, the most common flavors were fruit at 71.6%, candies, desserts or other sweets at 34.1%, 30.2% mint and 28.8% menthol.

The CDC states that the e-cigarette vapor that users inhale from the device and exhale may contain harmful and potentially harmful substances, including nicotine; ultrafine particles that can be inhaled deep into the lungs; flavorings such as diacetyl, a chemical linked to severe lung disease; volatile organic compounds; carcinogenic chemicals; and heavy metals such as nickel, tin and lead. It can be difficult to determine what is in e-cigarette products. For example, some electronic cigarettes marketed as containing no nicotine have been found to contain nicotine.

In May 2020, the New York State Department of Health announced that two signature pieces of Governor Andrew M. Cuomo’s comprehensive tobacco control policy had gone into effect. The first law prohibited the sale of flavored nicotine vapor products and the second prohibited the sale of all tobacco and nicotine vapor products in pharmacies. According to the Ministry of Health, flavors are largely responsible for the dramatic increase in the use of electronic cigarettes by young people in recent years and are one of the main reasons young people initiate and maintain e-cigarettes. use of electronic cigarettes.

“Unfortunately, we know the flavor devices are in most of our vape and smoke shops here locally,” Ms. Nabywaniec said. “And from our focus group work, we know there are a lot of kids under 21 buying them. I think one of the biggest things we hear in the focus groups discussion is that our kids buy from local tobacco and vape stores, and the provision of ID isn’t as enforced as it should be.

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