JUULING: Popular among teens, new way to take a puff - MSNewsNow.com - Jackson, MS

JUULING: Popular among teens, new way to take a puff

Parents are being warned about their children "juuling". Source: WLBT Parents are being warned about their children "juuling". Source: WLBT
Parents are being warned about their children "juuling". Source: WLBT Parents are being warned about their children "juuling". Source: WLBT
Parents are being warned about their children "juuling". Source: WLBT Parents are being warned about their children "juuling". Source: WLBT
Parents are being warned about their children "juuling". Source: WLBT Parents are being warned about their children "juuling". Source: WLBT
RIDGELAND, MS (Mississippi News Now) -

Parents, that new flash drive, or even your kid's marker, could be the latest method of lighting up.

Area schools and the Office of Tobacco Control are informing parents to keep their eyes open for a trend called Juuling, a method of taking a puff from an e-cigarette right under your nose.

"Juul is one of the most popular e-cigarettes right now," said Amy Winter, the director of the Office of Tobacco Control. "It is especially so among teens, to the point that some Madison High School administrators are warning parents about Juuling."

It is a brand of e-cigarette that students are reportedly smoking in class. The vape or smoke is odorless and disappears quickly.

According to Winter, the devices can be dangerously addictive.

"It delivers the same amount of nicotine as a pack of cigarettes, so 20 cigarettes, and that is a lot of nicotine for an adolescent brain," said Winter. "It interferes with learning. It can affect attention spans. Nicotine affects the respiratory system and cardio vascular system. So just like it does with adults, with youth it's a marked difference because adolescents are still growing and developing".

Also enticing for teens, the vape juice comes in flavors like candy and desserts.  

The devices can be easily disguised, appearing to be flash drives and conveniently hidden in common objects like markers.

"For youth, it's extremely popular because it's basically hidden in plain sight," said Winter. "It looks like a flash drive or a jump drive and the Juul product can be personalized. They call it skins, and they have decals that youth can actually put on them."

The Mississippi Youth Tobacco Study surveyed students grades six through 12 on e-cigarette use.

In 2015, 12 percent of high school students reported using e-cigarettes. One year later, that number dropped to 10.3 percent. 

For middle schoolers, 4.6 percent reported use in 2015, it increased to 5.9 percent in 2016.

The latest data indicates 9.9 percent of e-cigarette smokers were female, while 9.9 percent were male.

"It can be easily used," added Winter. "It can be used in a classroom and unless a teacher really notices a youth holding a jump drive up to their mouth, they probably would not even know what it was they were looking at."

All Mississippi schools have anti-tobacco policies and e-cigarettes are also prohibited.

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