Juul Vape Device

KCBS Radio/Diana Shook

Study Finds Vape Use Up Among Teens

Kids Reportedly Make A Game Of Vaping In Class

Diana Shook
July 18, 2018 - 10:19 am

SAN FRANCISCO (KCBS Radio) - More teenagers are using electronic cigarettes - and kids as young as eleven are taking up the habit.  

That's according to a new study published in the journal Drug And Alcohol Dependence, which asked kids about Juul Devices.

These vaporizing devices, made by the San Francisco-based company Juul, resemble flash drives, can be charged in a laptop, and are easy to conceal. 

KCBS Reporter Megan Goldsby spoke with Dr. Stanton Glantz, Professor of Medicine at UCSF, and the director of the school's Center for Tobacco Research and Education, about the research. He said, "The kids inhale the aerosol from the Juul device and exhale it into their sleeve or their shirt," turning vaping into what Glantz called "a game of cat and mouse with the teachers so they can actually be using these products right in class."

In addition, Juul "pods" come in kid-friendly flavors like fruit medley, mango and crème brûlée. Glantz said, "These flavored products are amazingly attractive to kids. Once they get going on them though, nicotine is a highly addictive substance, and is particularly bad for kids because their brains are still developing and the nicotine changes their brains in a way that makes it harder for them to stop using these products later in life."

Glantz said teens may think vaping is harmless - but they're wrong. 

He said he's not surprised that more kids are vaping. "These products are being aggressively marketed to the kids largely through social media, and a lot are new products that adults aren't even aware of."

Calls to Juul from KCBS were not returned. But the company's website claims it is dedicated to keeping its products, which contain nicotine and other chemicals, out of the hands of kids.