Youth Substance Use Prevention

Tobacco use remains the leading cause of preventable death and disease in Washington. Preventing youth initiation of tobacco and other nicotine use is essential to reduce tobacco-related mortality, morbidity, and economic costs.  

The 2021 Healthy Youth Survey shows 11% of Cowlitz County 10th graders reported the use of vaping products in the past 30 days; 10% of Cowlitz County 10th graders report current alcohol use, 37% report having ever drank, and 6% report binge drinking; 8% report current marijuana use, 1% report using prescription pain killers to get high; and 2% report other illegal drug use. 

Substance Use Prevention Among Youth

Adolescent years are times of important brain development. Nicotine exposure during adolescence and young adulthood can cause addiction and harm the developing brain. In addition, brain development in young adulthood continues into the mid-20s. Developing brains are more susceptible to the effects of alcohol and other drugs. Cowlitz County HHS supports community prevention partners to educate youth about being substance free. 

  1. Hilander Hope Coalition
  2. Epic Coalition
  3. Castle Rock Care Coalition

 According to the Surgeon General, besides nicotinee-cigarettes can contain harmful and potentially harmful ingredients, including:

  • ultrafine particles that can be inhaled deep into the lungs.
  • flavorants such as diacetyl, a chemical linked to serious lung disease.
  • volatile organic compounds.
  • heavy metals, such as nickel, tin, and lead.

You’ve probably heard a lot of different things about drugs, but what is TRUE? Youth Now has done research to bring you science-based evidence about drugs and alcohol, and how they affect your brain and body. No opinions or rumors here, just the facts about E-cigs/vaping, drugs, and alcohol.  

Other Tips and Tools to Quit

  1. Smoke Free.Gov: Learn about different tools to help you quit and how to use them.
  2. Truth Initiative:  Truth Initiative has helped more than 250,000 youth and young adults on their journey to quit vaping
  3. E-Cigs and Young Adults: Facts about e-cigarette use among youth and young adults
  4. See Through the VapeStart a conversation with your child.
  5. Campaign for Tobacco Free Kids: The Toll of Tobacco in Washington