E-Cigarette Brands’ Targeting of Teens Contributes to Vaping Addiction Among Youth

As the life-threatening effects of cigarettes became a reality to many people, the romanticizing of smoking and its association with a “cool” image started to burn out among America’s youth. Teens who lost loved ones to the effects of nicotine, or simply did not want to experience those effects themselves, did not follow the generations before them that picked up cigarettes at a young age. A decline in nicotine use was the trend — until cigarettes’ vapor-based alternative appeared.

Is Vaping Safer than Smoking Cigarettes?

When e-cigarettes were first introduced to consumers, they were advertised as a safe alternative to smoking traditional cigarettes. Many cigarette smokers switched to vaping in the hope the new habit would minimize the health hazards associated with cigarettes, or serve as a way to ease into quitting smoking altogether.

Studies on the effects of vaping uncovered the true risks of e-cigarettes — they’re just as addictive, and just as dangerous as smoking tobacco products.

The Hazards of Smoking E-Cigarettes

Vaping poses much of the same risks of smoking traditional cigarettes, including birth defects, lung cancer, asthma, and chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD). For young smokers in particular, using an e-cigarette can affect brain development and contribute to a propensity to addiction later in life. Vaping specifically is associated with a higher risk of seizures as well.

JUUL’s Effect on Youth Nicotine Addiction

JUUL is one of the top e-cigarette brands available today, and is especially popular among underage smokers. Vaping was already widespread among young populations, but JUUL emerged as a market leader and got a new generation of kids addicted to nicotine with advertising that directly targets young teens.

The company’s marketing relies heavily on social media campaigns, which feature young, popular influencers engaged in fun activities in front of colorful backgrounds. In fact, the brand’s advertisements almost exclusively feature very young-looking models that appear to be under, or barely over, the age of 18.

An attractive feature of JUUL is its flavored pods. JUUL pods, which contain the nicotine and other chemicals that are smoked, are formulated to taste like fruit, candy, and desserts. The actual vaping device can also be customized with different skins, another element that presents the purpose of pulling in teenaged consumers.

The marketing of JUUL itself is damning, but the statistics on the rise of vaping among teens show the brand’s strategies are effective at getting kids hooked. According to the Truth Initiative, people aged 15 to 17 years old are 16 times more likely to smoke JUUL than people between the ages of 25 and 34. Over 27% of high school students reported vaping 20 or more of the past 30 days when surveyed, a 7% rise from the 20% of teens who frequently smoked e-cigarettes in 2017. Fifty-six percent of JUUL users said they were under the age of 18 when they first tried the product.

JUUL and other vape companies’ teen-targeting marketing strategies directly endanger young people in the pursuit of collecting long-term profits off of their addiction. If your child was affected by JUUL’s careless advertising practices and developed a nicotine addiction as a result, contact Golomb & Honik, P.C. We are investigating cases of vaping-related illness and injury, such as lung disease, seizures, strokes, and cardiovascular issues — if you or a loved one was harmed by the use of JUUL products, get in touch with us today.

Our attorneys have represented injury victims for over 35 years. We’re committed to holding negligent e-cigarette companies accountable and recovering compensation for their victims.

Send us a message or call (215) 278-4449 to schedule a free consultation with our team.

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