Tobacco prevention focus of library’s Brown Bag Lunch

Tobacco use causes approximately 540,000 deaths every year in the United States alone. Lynn Bournia, community health specialist, and Penny Stumpf, health promotion and wellness manager with the Northeast Colorado Health Department, gave a presentation on “Tobacco’s Impact on Youth in Our Region” at Sterling Public Library’s Brown Bag Lunch Thursday.

NCHD gives the presentation to area school staff when needed; they have given it at Sterling Middle and High School.

According to a Healthy Kids Colorado Survey, which is completed every two years, in 2015, seven percent of youth reported using snus, 27.6 percent reported using hookah, 23.3 percent reported using cigarettes and 39.6 percent reported using E-vape, a significant increase from 10.7 percent in 2013.

Jars on display at Sterling Public Library’s Brown Bag Lunch on “Tobacco’s Impact on Youth in Our Region” Thursday, show, from left; the amount of tar that passes through a smoker’s lungs each year from smoking half a pack of cigarettes a day, the lung of a person that never smoked a day in their life but has damage from second-hand smoke, and the amount of phlegm a smoker with COPD would cough up in about two weeks. (Callie Jones / Sterling Journal-Advocate)

“That’s the biggest problem with you at this point,” Bournia said about the E-vape.

Additionally, the survey found 6.4 percent of youth reported using chew in the past 30 days, 6.9 percent reported using cigarettes, 9.8 percent reported using a cigar or little cigar, and 21.1 percent reported using E-vape.

NCHD’s region — Logan, Morgan, Phillips, Sedgwick, Washington and Yuma counties — is higher for chew, little cigars…

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