After San Francisco’s ban on e-cigarettes, Sonoma County too is considering a ban on vape devices. While some argue that these devices are capable of reducing nicotine addiction for adults, according to county records between 2017 and 2018 tobacco use for young adults (specifically high school and middle school children) has skyrocketed almost 40%.
Some feel that the spike in tobacco use for teens is caused by flavors tailored to make smoking exciting for young people, and that a simple ban of these flavors might halt the epidemic. Others feel like an outright ban on these products is the only way to control the situation until the federal government takes action. It is still unclear whether those teens now addicted to nicotine would turn back to conventional cigarettes following a ban; which could be even more detrimental. Regardless of the ban, teens find ways of accessing products that they shouldn’t have access to. Just as the age requirement for buying these devices (21+ in California) hasn’t stopped e-cigarettes from being the biggest disciplinary issue at schools, a ban may not have the desired effect. Sonoma County is under pressure to respond and protect their most vulnerable population. Whether a ban on vape products helps or not, they are trying to do what the federal government has yet to act on.
Whatever they decide, if you or someone you know has experienced or are experiencing a health related issue that you think could be related to a vape product of any kind (including products containing THC), the FDA encourages you to seek medical attention and report the product to assist in determining what is causing these outbreaks.