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From historic lows to historic highs: Minnesota's youth using nicotine again

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Laura Oliven is frustrated. Her job at the Minnesota Department of Health is to keep young people from smoking and to help people quit. She said in an interview with MPR News host Angela Davis that e-cigarettes and vapes are making her job a lot harder.

One in five young Minnesotans has used an e-cigarette in the past 30 days, according to the National Youth Tobacco Survey by the FDA. It found a nearly 50 percent increase in youth e-cigarette use between 2017 and 2018.

Oliven told Davis that e-cigarettes and vapes are not safe for adolescents. They deliver more nicotine with less effort and can be harmful to developing brains.

Hear more from Oliven by using the audio player above.

Correction (March 18, 2019): The copy above originally said e-cigarettes and vapes are not safer and do not help people quit smoking. This was incorrect and has been corrected above.