In Conversation

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State health officials and advocates are sounding the alarm on youth vaping.

According to a survey released last month by the Foundation for a Healthy Kentucky, youth vaping in the commonwealth doubled from 2016-2018 among all age groups surveyed —  sixth, eighth, 10th and 12th graders.

Data from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention show that 8.1 percent of teens in the U.S. smoked cigarettes in 2018, but 20.8 percent used e-cigarettes or vaping pens. And research shows that teens who use e-cigarettes and other cigarette alternatives are nearly twice as likely to later smoke traditional cigarettes than teens who don’t.

In an effort to stop student use of e-cigarettes, Jefferson County Public Schools last month launched an awareness campaign. And on Monday, U.S. Senator Mitch McConnell introduced a bill to raise the national minimum age for buying tobacco products from 18 to 21.

On this week’s In Conversation, we’ll talk about vaping and e-cigarettes, and how the habit is affecting the health of young people. Guests for the show will include Foundation for a Healthy Kentucky President Ben Chandler.

Listen to In Conversation live on 89.3 WFPL Friday at 11 a.m. or follow along with our live tweets at @WFPLnews. Call with your questions or comments at 502-814-TALK or tweet us with the hashtag #WFPLconversation. We’re also on Facebook.

Kyeland Jackson is an Associate Producer for WFPL News.