COLUMBIA, Mo. (KMIZ)
After a delay due to the coronavirus, the Columbia/Boone County Board of Health has issued their recommendations to help reduce teen vaping rates in the county.
The report states that "harmful health and mental health effects of youth vaping are far-reaching, and more interventions are needed to bring down the number of young people whose lives are marred by nicotine addiction."
The 2020 National Youth Tobacco Survey shows the national rate of current use among high school students dropped from 27.5% in 2019 to 19.6% in 2020 and among middle schoolers the rate dropped from 10.5% to 4.7%.
While vaping trends are down, possibly due to the pandemic, officials rates could increase as the economy returns to more normal conditions according to the report.
In the 2020 Missouri Student Survey, 29.7% of Missouri middle schoolers and high schoolers reported ever having used e-cigarettes in their lifetime, and 15.5% reported using them in the past 30 days.
In Boone County part of the survey, 11.68% of middle schoolers and high schoolers reported using them in their lifetime and 3.6% reported using e-cigarettes in the past 30 days. Over 90% surveyed though were in middle school.
The board has several ideas to help stop teen vaping.
- The board recommends:
- continuing an advertisement campaign to stop smoking
- more consistent enforcement of existing CPS vaping policies is needed
- better pathways for addicted youth to received cessation support
- stronger community policies to prevent youth vaping are needed
- prohibiting the sale of flavored tobacco products