Novel Tobacco Products Appeal To Youth

Novel tobacco products appeal to youth

Cigarettes are so not up there with today's tobacco-using teens who are more inclined to the new, the novel, the flavored, the vaporized product.

"Middle and high school kids are using novel products like e-cigarettes and hookahs in unprecedented numbers, and many are using more than one kind of tobacco product," said the epidemiology branch chief at the Food and Drug Administration's Center for Tobacco Products.

The number of kids smoking cigarettes is down but the number using other tobacco products is way up, according to the 2014 National Youth Tobacco Survey co-conducted by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and the FDA. Key findings:

  • One in four high school students and one in 13 middle school students reported being tobacco users, using one or more tobacco products in the previous 30 days.
  • Of the then-current 4.6 million youth tobacco users, 2.4 million reported using e-cigarettes.
  • The percentage of students reporting current use of cigarettes decreased to 9.2 percent from 15.8 percent in 2011.
  • Hookah use among high school students doubled and e-cigarette use increased even more between 2011 and 2014.
  • Nearly 2.2 million students reported using two or more tobacco products.

And many if not most of these products were not your grandfather's or grandmother's tobacco go-tos.

Visit the American Dental Association's consumer website, MouthHealthy.org for descriptions of some of the most common non-cigarette alternatives available to today's teens. "There is no such thing as a healthy tobacco product," says MouthHealthy.org. "Many non-cigarette alternatives are often marketed as healthier alternatives to smoking, but tobacco is harmful to your oral health and overall health."

Of course, tobacco products can cause bad breath. But other possible effects include stained teeth and tongue, dulled sense of taste and smell, slow healing after a tooth extraction or other surgery, difficulties in correcting cosmetic dental problems, gum disease and oral cancer. Check it out at MouthHealthy.org.

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