An op-ed in The Washington Post from Alex M. Azar, Secretary of Health and Human Services (HHS) and Scott Gottlieb, Commissioner of the Food and Drug Administration (FDA), brings much-needed attention to the growing problem of youth use of nicotine through e-cigarettes: In one year fom 2017 to 2018, “the number of high-school-age children reporting use of e-cigarettes rose by more than 75 percent. Use among middle-schoolers also increased nearly 50 percent. That is an epidemic… The surge in e-cigarette use by teenagers is alarming because nicotine is highly addictive and can harm brain development, which continues into young adulthood [emphasis added]. Worse, kids who start on e-cigarettes are actually more likely than non-user peers to migrate to smoking tobacco…”
This is a valuable national-level wake-up call on the part of two key federal leaders, and it focuses exactly on a central theme of the ONE CHOICE prevention message: zero use of alcohol, nicotine, cannabis, and any other substance that can skew teen brain development toward addiction as an adult.
Read the full op-ed here.