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Over a million teens started vaping from 2017-2019, new study finds

Health reporter Anjalee Khemlani examines data regarding the surge in teenage vaping and the addictiveness of tobacco products on youth.

Video Transcript

SEANA SMITH: A surge in young tobacco users, more than one million teens have turned to vaping in recent years, reversing decades of declining tobacco use. Anjalee Khemlani has more on this for us. Anj.

ANJALEE KHEMLANI: That's right, Seana. A new study out in the "Journal of Pediatrics" did note that's especially from the years 2017 to 2019, there was a significant increase in the number of teens using vaping products, especially Juul. We know there was a big fallout in those years, with states suing the company, as well as the FDA banning the marketing of flavored products and especially in cartridge style, which was very popular with kids then.

The new study showed that 14 to 17-year-olds had increased use in daily tobacco use, showing dependence on it. More than 3/4 of them are showing dependence on it, similar to adult smokers, and that the group that was under 21 years old was two times five-- 2.5 times higher than daily users in the older cohort of 25 to 35-year-olds in the survey that they conducted.

It's also important to point out that what this really means in terms of long-term health risks for these individuals is yet unknown. That's really what pediatricians are concerned about. We did see some impact of that in the start of the pandemic. A Stanford University study showed that teens and young adults who vaped faced a much higher risk of COVID-19 than their peers. So we already saw that early on impact, but really, what the long-term is really where the concern is and why this study was so important.