“Juul” is a new method and technology for e-cigarettes, a hip trend that is becoming increasingly popular amongst American youth. But just like with other e-cigarettes, there is a risk for addiction. And there is, of course, an entire swath of controversy over the health repercussions of e-cigarettes as well.
A new device used in vaping is called the “Juul.” The device and the e-liquids for it are made by Juul Labs. Juul is the newest trend, the biggest fad of them all to hit the e-cigarette and vaporizer community, but this device and its liquids come with their own array of controversy and concern too.
Just in the last year alone, Juul Labs has been the effect of not one, not two, but three separate lawsuits, all being lawsuits that were aimed at the company for selling an addictive product. In one lawsuit, a mother of a fifteen-year-old attempted to bring legal action to Juul Labs for getting her son addicted to using his Juul e-vaporizer device. Another suit was filed in the U.S. District Court of Northern California. One was filed in the San Francisco Superior Court. The incident of the mother of the fifteen-year-old boy was filed in the U.S. District Court in New York. All of thee lawsuits traced back to implicating Juul Labs in intentionally making an addictive product and marketing it to young people.
Every time someone has spoken out against the Juul group, their products, or their juices, the complaints have been focused on the “nicotine salts” used in Juul devices. Nicotine salts are substances that form in the process of heating dried tobacco leaves. Nicotine salts are a byproduct of the tobacco manufacture process. When used in a vaporizer unit, nicotine salts are said to provide a more pleasant inhalation experience, which some allege is why young people are so drawn to Juuls over other vaporizers or tobacco cigarettes.
According to the medical journal, Chemical Research in Toxicology, Juul vape juices contain more nicotine and less of the harsh, free-base chemicals than other brands, which again indicates that this substance would be more amicable for young people to partake in. The research documents also indicated that Juul’s nicotine salts deliver more nicotine to the bloodstream than traditional cigarettes do.
Juul e-cigarettes are not legal for youth under the age of eighteen, and that is the company’s primary stance in the defense of their products. However, we can all understand that when a company makes a product that is appealing for teenagers and adolescents, that age group is going to get ahold of the product whether we want them to or not.
Juul e-cigarettes possess a certain, gateway drug factor to them. When young people start using Juul e-cigarettes, this can inspire them to explore other substances too. It is not that much of a leap to go from smoking Juuls every day to experimenting with marijuana. From there it is not that much of a leap to go from marijuana to synthetic marijuana. One can get stuck pretty quickly on a dwindling spiral of drug use before they know what has happened to them.
By themselves, Juuls are not the worst substance that young people can experiment with. But Juul substances get young people started in the use of substances that have a profound effect on them. And as a young person’s brain and mind are so much more prone to dependence and adverse reaction to substances than an adult’s mind is, a Juul e-cigarette can have a far more severe effect on a teenager than it would on someone in their thirties.
We should strive for a country that has fewer addictive substances, not more. Juul e-cigarettes are just another substance for young people to misuse. Should they be outlawed? Non necessarily. But we need to make sure that young people do not use the substances, and the makers of Juul products should strive to make their substances non-addictive.