Crown juul

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Photo provided by Michael Purdie

Juuls were made to target smokers. Now, juuls are taking over.

Grace Clarke , Reporter

“Yo, can I hit that?”

*Long sigh* “Fine make it quick.”

This type of interaction is becoming more and more common as the school year has started. Whether it’s in the bathrooms, in the locker room, in the parking lot, or at a party, JUULs have taken over.

According to the JUUL website, “JUUL is for adult smokers seeking a satisfying alternative to cigarettes. JUUL was designed with smokers in mind. With its unique satisfaction profile, simple interface, flavor variety and lack of lingering smell, JUUL stands out as a genuinely satisfying vapor alternative for smokers.”

With the rise of e-cigarettes, especially among teenagers, JUULs have found a way to gain traction and popularity among students.

One characteristic that makes it attractive for students is its slim shape.  It is slender— at about three and three quarter’s inches long—it is comparable to a flash drive. This makes keeping it in your pocket, shoe, or jacket simple to access and easy to conceal from teachers.

An anonymous student* said, “It makes for a good time and it’s very easy to use and harder to get caught then, let’s say, alcohol or weed.”

If a JUUL is just lying on a desk, a teacher may not recognize it as a drug, but if it was alcohol or marijuana, a teacher would most likely be able to identify.

Teenagers also use JUULs for the feeling it gives.  One student said, “Its fun to use when I’m bored at home because it gives me a buzz.”  This “buzz,” a nicotine high, eventually fades away and makes the user want it again, causing teenagers to continuously go through pods, the cartridge nicotine refills in a JUUL.

Unlike alcohol or drugs, JUULs can be purchased at numerous places including gas stations and smoke/vape shops.

“I got one from my friend’s older brother who is over 18,” one student said.  Another student added, “I got it from somebody who is older than me and has more connections that I do.”  Siblings buy them for friends, friends by them for their friends, and then those friends sell them to other friends.

“Everyone is kind of using it right now so that influenced me to get one,” one student said.  JUULs provide an easy way for teenagers to get their nicotine fixes while looking cool as they do it.

But, there’s a catch.

Teenagers who use a JUUL for fun, out or convenience of just out of pure FOMO, ignore  what they are doing to their bodies.

“E-cigarettes irritate the lungs less than regular cigarettes, but they deliver as much or more nicotine, and nicotine constricts blood vessels,” says an article called “E-Cigarettes: The Side Effects Nobody Talks About” from dailyburn.com.

While they may healthier than cigarettes they still have high levels of nicotine in them. This may encourage teenagers to most likely move onto cigarettes.  The consequences of nicotine addiction are dangerous and can affect your health for the rest of your life.

“Adrenaline is then released, increasing heart rate and blood pressure, and making breathing rapid and shallow,” says an article in UCANQUIT2.org. “As nicotine use continues, these effects can damage your heart, arteries, and lungs, increasing the risk for heart attack, stroke, and chronic lung disease.”

While teenagers may think JUULs are innocent, since they are have very little smoke and scent compared to cigarettes, JUULs are leading teenagers down a dangerous path.

“About three out of every four teen smokers goes on to smoke as an adult, due to their addiction to nicotine (the primary ingredient in e-cigs),” according to the CDC.