Tobacco Free Partnership of Martin County Exposes Tobacco Industry Manipulation and Dangers of Youth Nicotine Use for World No Tobacco Day
May 31, 2020

The Tobacco Free Partnership of Martin County is educating residents on the dangers of youth nicotine use and the manipulative tactics used by tobacco companies for this year’s World No Tobacco Day. The World Health Organization (WHO) sponsors World No Tobacco Day annually, around the world on May 31. This year’s theme is “Protecting youth from industry manipulation and preventing them from tobacco and nicotine use.”  

Locally, the partnership is working with school SWAT (Students Working Against Tobacco) Clubs to distribute information on the dangers of nicotine, and partnership members are sharing resources for the Quit Your Way program through organizations like the Children’s Services Council of Martin County.  Quit Your Way is a free smoking cessation resources offering counseling and free tools to help Florida residents quit.

Youth vaping has become an alarming public health threat in Florida and here in Martin County. In 2019, one in four of Florida high school students reported current use of electronic cigarettes.(1) E-cigarettes typically contain nicotine, which is highly addictive.(2) Youth may be more sensitive to nicotine and feel dependent on nicotine sooner compared to adults.(3,4,5) The brain continues to develop until the early to mid-20s and the developing brain is more vulnerable to the negative effects of nicotine. Evidence suggests that youth who use e-cigarettes may be at greater risk of starting to smoke regular cigarettes. (7,8,9,10)

“Youth tobacco and nicotine prevention continues to be a top priority in our community, said Jennifer Ahern, tobacco free partnership advisory member. “E-cigarette companies claim that their products are intended for adults, but skyrocketing prevalence rates among teens tell a different story. We want our residents to know that we are a trusted resource for information about youth tobacco and nicotine use.”


Pictureed L to R: Kim Nash, Jennifer Ahern, Dr. Barry Hummel

Parents and educators should: advise youth of the dangers of nicotine; discourage youth tobacco use in any form, including e-cigarettes; and set a positive example by being tobacco free themselves. Tobacco Free Florida is taking steps to educate Floridians about this troubling epidemic through social media campaigns and an educational blog post, which can be found at tobaccofreeflorida.com on World No Tobacco Day and year-round.

 

About Tobacco Free Florida
The Florida Department of Health’s Tobacco Free Florida campaign is a statewide cessation and prevention campaign funded by Florida’s tobacco settlement fund. Since the program began in 2007, more than 234,000 Floridians have successfully quit using one of Tobacco Free Florida's free tools and services. There are now approximately 451,000 fewer adult smokers in Florida than there was 10 years ago, and the state has saved $17.7 billion in health care costs. To learn more about Tobacco Free Florida’s Quit Your Way services, visit www.tobaccofreeflorida.com or follow the campaign on Facebook at www.facebook.com/TobaccoFreeFlorida or on Twitter at www.twitter.com/tobaccofreefla.

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References:

  1. Florida Youth Tobacco Survey (FYTS), Florida Department of Health, Bureau of Epidemiology, 2019.
  2. U.S. Department of Health and Human Services. E-Cigarette Use Among Youth and Young Adults. A Report of the Surgeon General. Atlanta, GA: U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, National Center for Chronic Disease Prevention and Health Promotion, Office on Smoking and Health, 2016.
  3. U.S. Department of Health and Human Services. E-Cigarette Use Among Youth and Young Adults. A Report of the Surgeon General. Atlanta, GA: U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, National Center for Chronic Disease Prevention and Health Promotion, Office on Smoking and Health, 2016.
  4. U.S. Department of Health and Human Services. The Health Consequences of Smoking: 50 Years of Progress. A Report of the Surgeon General. Atlanta, GA: U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, National Center for Chronic Disease Prevention and Health Promotion, Office on Smoking and Health, 2014. Printed with corrections, January 2014.
  5. U.S. Department of Health and Human Services. Preventing Tobacco Use Among Youth and Young Adults: A Report of the Surgeon General. Atlanta, GA: U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, National Center for Chronic Disease Prevention and Health Promotion, Office on Smoking and Health, 2012.
  6. Berry KM, Fetterman JL, Benjamin EJ, et al. Association of Electronic Cigarette Use With Subsequent Initiation of Tobacco Cigarettes in US Youths. JAMA Netw Open. 2019;2(2):e187794. doi:10.1001/jamanetworkopen.2018.7794
  7. Miech R, Patrick ME, O'Malley PM, et al E-cigarette use as a predictor of cigarette smoking: results from a 1-year follow-up of a national sample of 12th grade students Tobacco Control 2017;26:e106-e111.
  8. National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine. 2018. Public Health Consequences of E-Cigarettes. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press. https://doi.org/10.17226/24952.
  9. U.S. Department of Health and Human Services. E-Cigarette Use Among Youth and Young Adults. A Report of the Surgeon General. Atlanta, GA: U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, National Center for Chronic Disease Prevention and Health Promotion, Office on Smoking and Health, 2016.
  10. Mann, Nathan M, Nonnemaker, James M., Thompson, Jesse. "Smoking-Attributable Health Care Costs in Florida and Potential Health Care Cost Savings Associated with Reductions in Adult Smoking Prevalence." 2016.