Tobacco is changing. It used to be that cigarette use was the popular thing. Now it’s e-cigarettes/vaping. Did you know that e-cigarette use in high school students has increased by 154% between the years 2014 and 2018? That’s 1 in 5 students using e-cigarettes! Or that use in middle school students has increased by 272%?
It’s no surprise why – adolescents are being targeted by big tobacco! E-cigarettes come in a variety of forms and thousands of flavors. Some e-cigarettes resemble flash drives, while others may look like laser pointers or highlighters. The flavors resemble that of candy — think Mango, Cherry, Vanilla, and Mint. Package it all up nicely in some bright colors, and suddenly tobacco seems harmless. Except that it’s not… especially, to an adolescent whose brain is still developing.
Tobacco is changing, and we need to keep up. But how? Where can we learn more about products like e-cigarettes? How do we help our children understand the dangers of tobacco? How do we talk to our children about these difficult topics?
WWHF staff, Michelle Rimer, recently sat down for a podcast with Spencer Straub, Media and Communications Coordinator for Wisconsin’s Tobacco Prevention and Control program (TPCP), and Marie Justice, mom and Spokesperson for the Tobacco is Changing Campaign to talk about new tobacco products, current efforts to educate parents, and how to address harmful products with children.
Listen to the interview HERE!