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What is the New Legal Sale Age for All Tobacco Products in Nevada?
In December 2019, the Federal Food, Drug, and Cosmetic Act (FD&C) was amended to raise the federal minimum age for the sale of tobacco products from 18 to 21 years. It is now illegal for a retailer to sell any tobacco product – including cigarettes, cigars, and electronic vaping products to anyone under 21 in Nevada and all other states.
Why was the Smoking Age Changed from 18 to 21?
The new law is intended to make tobacco products less accessible and attractive to young people. Increasing the minimum sale age of tobacco to 21 is a strategy to reduce smoking and other tobacco use among youth and save lives.
Increasing the tobacco age to 21 will help prevent young people from ever starting to smoke and reduce the deaths, diseases, and healthcare costs associated with tobacco use.
Youth and Tobacco Use
About 95% of smokers start before age 21. Every day, nearly 2,000 kids across the U.S. smoke their first cigarette, and in Nevada, 800 kids become daily smokers every year, about 30% of whom will die prematurely as a result. Tobacco use results in over 480,000 deaths as a result of cigarette smoking or exposure to secondhand smoke.
Nicotine Addiction in Young People
Young people who use tobacco products can become addicted. The more frequently someone smokes or vapes, the more their brain and body get used to having nicotine, and the harder it is to kick the habit. When someone stops using, the nicotine level in their body drops, which may cause unpleasant physical symptoms, and a strong urge to smoke or vape.
The Risk of E-Cigarettes, Vaping in Children
Most e-cigarettes and vape pods contain nicotine, which is highly addictive, especially for teenagers. E-cigarette liquids may contain nicotine, even if they have been labeled ‘nicotine free’. One e-liquid pod can contain as much nicotine as a pack of cigarettes.
Nicotine exposure during the teenage years can affect brain development, which continues until about age 25. It can impact learning, memory, and attention, and increase the risk of future addiction to other drugs. Young people who vape or use e-cigarettes are also more likely to go on to use regular cigarettes.
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