Youth & Nicotine Pouches - A New Trend?

In 2016, nicotine pouches entered the US market and have drastically increased in popularity since then. Fruit-flavored pouches were the most popular and outsold all other types in the first six months of 2020. One of the brands in our area that have been popular with the youth are called “Zyn”. Others are Velo, Juice Head, breakers, ON!, Rouge, GR1NDS, to name a few.

Nicotine pouches are oral tobacco products that dissolve nicotine salt-based powder in the mouth without requiring spitting. These products come in many flavors and colorful packaging that look like mint containers.

Any form of nicotine is highly addictive and can harm brain development through the age of 25. Nicotine is linked to symptoms of depression and anxiety in youth.

Thirteen percent of youth ages 15-24 surveyed in 2020 used nicotine pouches. In fact, sales have increased from $710,000 in 2016 to $217,000,000 in 2020. We all know data takes time, so these numbers have more likely increased in the past three years.

Many products are marketed as tobacco-free alternatives to smoking which may seem low-risk and safer, however these claims are not authorized by the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) Many nicotine pouches do not contain tobacco leaf, but still contain nicotine derived from the tobacco.

With the popularity of vaping and now also candy flavored nicotine pouches, we have a lot of addicted youth. Quitting is hard. That’s why My Life, My Quit is available as a free and confidential way for youth to quit nicotine products. My Life My Quit also offers resources for parents, educators and health care professionals. To learn more visit mylifemy or text “Start My Quit” to 36072 or call Tobacco Education Specialist, Jacklyn Damm at the Richland County Health Department, 406-433-2207 for more information.


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