While the overall use of marijuana among Oregon youth has remained flat, the primary way they’re using the substance, nicotine vaping, has dramatically increased, an Oregon Health Authority (OHA) analysis has found. This finding adds to evidence that vaping is subjecting much more youth to addiction.
New data shows one in four Oregon 11th-graders reported vaping a nicotine product, with youth use of e-cigarettes like Juul increasing nearly 80 percent between 2017 and 2019. Marijuana use changed dramatically as well, according to the data, with youth shifting from smoking marijuana to vaping.
The Oregon Healthy Teens (OHT) survey data shows that youth vaping of marijuana increased 295 percent — from 11 percent to 44 percent among 11th-graders using marijuana — between 2017 and 2019, even as 11th-grade overall marijuana use stayed constant at 20 percent.
OHT and the Behavioral Risk Factor Surveillance System (BRFSS), a survey the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention annually administers in partnership with states, both found that nicotine vaping products are most popular among children and young adults.
It confirms what we’ve long known: Vaping is putting a new generation at risk for addiction. These products can get young people started using nicotine and marijuana, and it is easy to get hooked.
In Oregon, youth vaping overlaps with the use of conventional tobacco and flavored tobacco products, the OHT analysis showed. More than half of Oregon’s eighth and 11th graders who use tobacco use flavored tobacco. Roughly half of all youth who currently use conventional tobacco products started with vape products. Nearly two in five Oregon 11th grade vape users also currently smoke conventional cigarettes.
A February 2019 study in the journal JAMA Network Open, one of the first studies to track youth e-cigarette users over time, found that young people who vape e-cigarettes are nearly three times as likely to start smoking cigarettes as peers who don’t vape.
OHA advises the public not to use e-cigarettes or vape products those who want to quit are urged to take advantage of free cessation resources.
Source: The News Guard