A nationwide ban on many flavored e-cigarette products took effect today. The ban covers a number of kid-friendly flavorings, such as mint and fruit, though menthol and tobacco flavorings will remain legal. However, the ban only applies to specific types of devices: cartridge or pre-filled pod devices, like the ones made popular by Juul. All other devices will be left on the market.
Plans for restricting e-cigarette flavors on a federal level first came up in September, when key national data on teen vaping was released. It was revealed that from 2017 to 2019, rates of vaping had more than doubled among 8th, 10th and 12th grade students. That report coincided with the peak of a public health crisis: mysterious, severe lung diseases linked to vaping. As of Jan. 21 (the latest data available), the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention reports that there have been 2,711 cases of people who've been hospitalized with EVALI, or e-cigarette, or vaping, product use-associated lung injury. All 50 states, plus Washington, D.C., have reported EVALI cases. Sixty people, including one from Kansas, have died. Many others were left with lasting lung damage.
In the video, Dr. Stephen Thornton, toxicologist, emergency room physician and medical director of the Poison Control Center at The University of Kansas Health System, answers several key questions about e-cigarettes. What is vaping, and what is it that’s being inhaled in the devices? Why are they so popular among teens? What are the risks? Can vaping help someone quit smoking regular tobacco, and can it actually create new smokers? He talks about what the latest research on vaping and most importantly, what parents need to know.