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Marketing to Teens….the Truth Behind Big Tobacco

Teenagers have always been a coveted market for businesses because they have a lot of disposable income and are easily influenced by their peers and trends. My sister who is a Assistant Principal at a local high school said they confiscate approximately 30 vaping devices PER DAY! Vaping companies have been successful in targeting teenagers because of the following reasons:

1. Social acceptance: Vaping has become socially acceptable among teenagers, and it is often seen as a cool and trendy thing to do. This perception has been cultivated by the marketing strategies of vaping companies, which often use social media influencers and celebrities to promote their products.

2. Variety of flavors: Vaping companies offer a wide variety of flavors that appeal to teenagers. These flavors range from sweet and fruity to minty and mentholated. The flavors are often marketed as a way to personalize the vaping experience and make it more enjoyable.

3. Easy access: Vaping products are readily available online and in convenience stores, making it easy for teenagers to purchase them. Some vaping products are also designed to look like everyday items such as pens, making it easy for teenagers to conceal them.

Some smoke shops even offer free vaping device to encourage teen consumer's!

4. Nicotine addiction: Vaping products contain nicotine, which is highly addictive. Teenagers who try vaping may become addicted to nicotine, which can lead to long-term health problems.

5. Lack of regulation: Vaping products are not heavily regulated, which means that companies can make false claims about the safety and effectiveness of their products. This lack of regulation makes it easier for companies to target teenagers with their marketing campaigns.

Cancer studies often take decades to get factual research from. Due to vaping being a fairly new, there is not enough data to have factual evidence to give any kind of “proof” that it doesn’t have similar cancer related statistics. According to the data from the National Youth Tobacco Survey, tobacco use in the form of e-cigarettes has increased from 1.8% in 2011 to almost 20.8% in 2018.

What does this have to do with oral cavity? Teens are already at a high risk for tooth decay due to diet, diminished hygiene care……(I have a 13 yr old boy…I know first hand) that adding other factors to increase the amount of bacteria in their mouth and or diminish the immune response to that bacteria can put them at a higher risk for oral cancer.

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