A brand of e-cigs called JUUL has been drawing a lot of heat from the past few days. It’s particularly popular among adolescents. JUUL is a San Francisco based company established in 2015. Their product is widely available on convenience stores too. It’s shaped like a sleek USB drive that’s pretty easy to conceal. Students in high school and middle school are pretty fond of its shape since nobody can suspect they are carrying a vape.
The JUUL starter pack contains 4 pods of flavored e-juice formulated with nicotine salts and natural tobacco leaves. It has a higher nicotine concentrate than other e-cigs and hence it is more addictive. Originally, JUUL was marketed to those who wanted to quit smoking but it got the attention of lots of teens who started it as a cool trend. They can be at the verge of getting addicted to it.
Now that we know it contains twice the amount of nicotine as other e-cigs, it is alarming because lots of users say they consume a whole pod in a day. The scary part is this device can be easily carried anywhere without getting noticed. Maybe it’s your kid’s backpack right now. It costs $50 and it can be charged via a USB port. A user just has to insert the pod he likes and it takes once draw to start smoking. A box of pod costs $20 for 4. Lots of users believe the fruity flavors for benign products but they are filled with nicotine.
As a parent, you must be wondering how you can stop your kid from trying it. Wait, threatening your kid with punishment isn’t going to keep them away or make them stop if they are already juuling. The best approach is to be honest with your kids about why Juuling is harmful. Here a little guide for you:
- Try not to freak out
First things first, don’t freak out. If you start the conversation with anger, your teen will simply shut you down. You need to show some empathy towards your kid.
- Asks questions and don’t forget to listen
You should only ask open-ended questions. Instead of saying “Why are kids your age so into Juuling? Do you know it contains nicotine?” You should be asking questions like “So I have heard of the new vape called JUUL. Are its flavors really that great?” Your teen may respond by saying “I have tried it and the flavors are cool” or “I don’t know, I haven’t tried but my friend Mark says it’s good.” Answers like these will tell you whether or not your teen is actually using it. At this point, do not ask yes or no questions.
- Talk about the health hazards of Juuling
Juuling and vaping are new so there isn’t much research or statistics available on the long-term effects of inhaling nicotine vapor. However, there is a research that says e-cigs is correlated with the future use of cigarettes among teens since nicotine is extremely addictive.
You need to trigger your kid to consider the pitfalls of Juuling because simply telling them it’s bad for your health isn’t going to work. You need to give them good reasons to believe it’s not good. Tell that it’s going to affect their ability to play baseball. Stuff like that will make them think about consuming it.
- Share your concerns with your kid
Your kid deserves to know what worries you. Since you can’t control their actions, you must openly talk about your concerns. Tell them that you know it is difficult to avoid it especially when all your friends are doing it. Let them know you are here to talk to whenever they need help. You must approach them as a friend.
- Keep your emotions in check
Let’s suppose you have discovered your teen is Juuling. Your knee-jerk reaction in this situation would be to search their room, school bag, snoop on their phone or maybe even call the parents of their friends to check on them. Don’t do any of that. You need to tell your kid that this habit can lead to more addictions down the road. Don’t punish them or try to control their behavior.
That’s not it, parents must monitor their credit cards and online shopping accounts to see if their kids have been buying any products out of their knowledge. The good news is, FDA is coming for JUUL. It is aggressively taking steps to keep the faddish nicotine products away from kids. FDA has even sent a letter to JUUL to request any research the company has done on how kids might use their product including how the USB charged device design will appeal the youth. It is stepping forward to protect kids and that’s a good thing. However, this doesn’t mean parents can forget about their responsibility of educating their kids and protecting them from the addictions of the modern world.