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Vaping & Nicotine Addiction

Vaping among youth is a growing concern among parents and community members. The growing popularity of vaping and the evolution of products has made it difficult to stay up-to-date with information pertaining to the products. This page is meant to provide parents and guardians, community members and youth with information about vaping and other nicotine or tobacco products.

Here is some basic information:

  • Nicotine is a highly addictive and dangerous drug
  • Most, if not all, vapes contain nicotine - even if they are labeled '0%', many have been found to have some level of nicotine in them
  • Other dangerous chemicals are found in the "E-juice" or vape-pods
  • Empty pods are being sold and filled with THC concentrate (THC is the chemical in marijuana that causes the 'high')
  • The terms "vaping" and "Juuling" are used interchangably because the company Juul Labs is the largest company in the vaping industry
  • When the liquid is heated in the vape-pen or Juul, metals within the pen are also heated, aerosolized and inhaled
  • Vapes come in many flavors that are attractive to young people like fruits and even desserts. (Some even say the started vaping because it comes in flavors they like.)
  • There have been reports of mono, stomach flu and other contagious disease as a result of sharing vape-pens or Juuls
  • Talking to youth about vaping, nicotine, and other harmful substances is one way to prevent substance use - See some tips below!

Laws and Regulations About Nicotine and Tobacco Products

  • You must be 21 or older to purchase nicotine products in MA - effective 12/31/2018 (a law that Malden already has in effect)
  • Vaping or E-Cigarette products are defined as nicotine products
  • Sale of nicotine and tobacco products is banned in health care institutions - including pharmacies and "big box stores" like BJ's and COSTCO
  • It is illegal to "vape" anywhere it is illegal to smoke in MA (schools, public buildings, public transit, etc.)

Restricting access is an effective way to keep vapes away from young people. Some MA cities and towns have passed (Somerville) or are considering (Malden, Needham, Ashland) restricting menthol products to adult-only stores and restricting vaping products to adult-only stores. Malden Board of Health will hold a public hearing in consideration of this restriction Wednesday January 16, 2019 and will vote at a later date.

What Parents and Guardians Can Do

Set Limits & Monitor Behavior

Establish clear rules and consequences for behavior early, and stick to them.

Find Malden High School 2018-19 Student and Family Handbook Here - find the Substance Abuse Prevention and Intervention Policy beginning on page 48

Find Malden's K-8 Student Handbook Here - find the Substance Abuse Prevention and Intervention Policy beginning on page 37

Monitor things like:

  • Debit card transactions
  • Uber or Lyft accounts
  • Loss of interest in activities
  • Strong odors that could be a result of vaping - even if it smells good

"Rules provide a concrete way to let your child understand what’s expected of him or her and to learn self-control. Don’t just assume they “know” you don’t want them to drink or do drugs. Teens and young adults don’t deal well with gray areas, so when they’re offered alcohol or drugs, you don’t want any confusion in their minds." Read more here

Talk to your child about vaping, nicotine and other harmful substances

Mystic Valley Public Health Coalition: Prepare Yourself. Prepare Your Kid. Pass it On.

Talk with Your Teen About E-Cigarettes: A Tip Sheet for Parents

Preventing Teen Drug Use: How to Talk with Your Teen

Drug Prevention Tips for Every Age

Family Check-Up: Positive Parenting Prevents Drug Use