News and Events

A Letter to Parents and Educators:
The Youth Vaping Epidemic

April 15, 2020

As we adjust to our new normal and daily routines, it can be easy to sideline the challenges we had during the school year. While it might be on the sidelines, the youth vaping epidemic has not gone away. According to the Florida Youth Tobacco Survey, one in four high school students and one in ten middle schools have reported current use of an e-cigarette device.

Electronic cigarette devices typically contain nicotine and other harmful chemicals. The aerosol that users inhale from an e-cigarette can contain cancer-causing chemicals and heavy metals such as nickel, tin, and lead. The long-term effects of e-cigarettes remain unknown; however, nicotine use in adolescence is not safe. The brain continues to develop until the age of 25. The developing brain makes youth more vulnerable to the effects of nicotine, which include effects to impulse control, attention, learning, and mood.

While students remain at home and continue distant learning, we must be aware of the effects of electronic cigarettes. Progress continues to be made through policy change, but there is still more to be done. New disposable products, such as Puff Bars, Stig, and Smok, have become popular among youth since they are not covered under the FDA flavor restriction.

These deceptive-looking devices are all drug delivery systems that fall through the cracks of the current FDA regulations for flavored electronic cigarettes!

The e-cigarette industry is finding new ways to disregard federal regulation and attract youth to the product. As parents, educators, and community members, it is crucial to have conversations with each other and with students about the dangers of electronic cigarettes. The Tobacco-Free Partnership of Indian River County is here as a space for communication and information regarding the youth vaping epidemic. For more information, please contact Kyleigh Savoie at


  1. 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.