Since the Surgeon General came out with his official warning in 1964 that tobacco is responsible for certain cancers, mainly, lung, esophageal, and bladder, smoking rates began to decline.

In 1965, around 43% of adults smoked cigarettes; however, in present day America, just 14% of adults smoke, according to the CDC.

Although the goal for anybody who is addicted is to stop completely, more often than not, people replace it with another addiction or fall into "harm reduction" mode and simply use less.

About ten years ago, e-cigarettes hit the market, and in 2019, vaping is being considered an epidemic among young people.

Originally intended as a safer alternative to the real thing, e-cigarettes wound up being primarily marketed toward children and young people. (surprise, surprise).

A typical JUUL vaping device costs around $50.00, and the pod's around $4.00. Pods contain flavored vape along with a much higher nicotine content than an actual cigarette. In fact, the nicotine content is 5 to 1, and one pod is equivalent to one pack of cigarettes.

E-cigarettes are a business, and they need to addict their next generation of consumers. So, the way to reach adolescents is to focus on flavors. A lot of them out there like Tutti-Frutti, mango, bubble gum, even Dorito's, and they are all among JUUL flavors. -Joyce Brewer

Cleverly designed as easy to conceal and rechargeable in one's laptop computer, JUUL owns the market on e-cigarettes outselling competitors such as Blu and others. In July of 2018, JUUL was valued at $15 billion.

Slater and Marjo had the chance to chat with Joyce Brewer from Berkshire Area Health Education Center on Tuesday and get some FAQs answered.

  1. Is vaping safer? Fact is we don't know. Although vaping appears to be safer than inhaling cigarette smoke, vape, which is really aerosol and not "water vapor" contains potentially harmful chemicals such as propylene glycol (found in pet friendly anti-freeze), diacetyl, and heavy metals such as nickel, tin, and lead.
  2. Nicotine is not a carcinogen, so what's the harm? Although that is true, nicotine is extremely addictive and in people under 25 at are risk for mood disorders, impulse control, and can act as a "gateway drug".
  3. Second-hand smoke is no longer an issue. Wrong. Folks who inhale second hand aerosol from e-cigs are just as at risk.
  4. Can you vape marijuana from e-cigs? Yes. It's all over the internet on how to get THC into the vape pods.

Although e-cigarettes contain less harmful ingredients than real thing, the jury is still out on just how much less. Vaping is not harmless. Find out more at getoutraged.org.