VapeAware

According to the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA), e-cigarettes are devices that allow users to inhale an aerosol (vapor) containing nicotine or other substances. E-cigarettes, including e-pens, e-pipes, e-hookah and e-cigars, are known as electronic nicotine delivery systems (ENDS). Unlike traditional cigarettes, e-cigarettes generally are battery-operated and use a heating element to heat e-liquid from a refillable cartridge, releasing a chemical-filled aerosol. Most e-cigarettes contain nicotine, which causes addiction, may harm brain development, and could lead to continued tobacco product use among youth.

St. Mary’s County Youth and E-cigarettes

From 2011-2014, e-cigarette use (within the past 30 days) increased from less than 1% to almost 4% among middle school students, and from less than 2% to 13% among high school students in the U.S. Local data indicates that e-cigarette use among youth in St. Mary’s County is higher than the state average, and even higher among the Hispanic population.

According to the 2014 Youth Risk Behavior Survey (YRBS) results, the following data compares electronic vapor use (including e-cigarettes, e-cigars, e-pipes, vape pipes, vaping pens, e-hookahs, and hookah pens) among St. Mary’s County youth to those in the rest of the state of Maryland:

Percentage of students who ever used electronic vapor products:

St. Mary’s County

  • Total: 41.5%
  • Hispanic students: 51.9%

State of Maryland

  • Total: 37.6%
  • Hispanic students: 43.9%

Percentage of students who currently used electronic vapor products on at least one day during the 30 days prior to the survey: 

St. Mary’s County

  • Total: 25.9%
  • Hispanic students: 32.7%

State of Maryland

  • Total: 20.0%
  • Hispanic students: 22.7%

Percentage of students who usually use a kind of flavoring other than tobacco flavor with an electronic vapor product (among students who have ever used an electronic vapor product): 

St. Mary’s County

  • Total: 93.8%

State of Maryland

  • Total: 93.3%

Local Action to Address E-cigarette Use Among Youth

The St. Mary’s County Health Department works closely with our local health improvement coalition, the Healthy St. Mary’s Partnership, St. Mary’s County Public Schools, and local law enforcement to address e-cigarette use among youth. The St. Mary’s County Sheriff’s Office conducts retailer compliance checks, including vape lounges, to ensure that electronic vapor products are not sold to minors.

For more information about e-cigarette regulations and use among youth, please visit the U.S. Food and Drug Administration website.

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