When you hear that something comes in strawberry, ice cream, chocolate, peach, or grape flavors, your first thoughts may be: ice cream, candy, or something made for kids. After all, manufacturers of kids’ toothpastes, medicines, and vitamins add fun flavors to make their products more appealing. You may also think that flavored products are harmless, like candy.
But if you think flavored mini cigars are harmless, you’re mistaken.
Cigars of any kind, including flavored mini cigars, contain the same addictive and cancer-causing qualities as regular cigarettes. In fact, cigar tobacco has a high concentration of nitrogen compounds, some of the strongest cancer-causing substances known. Cigar smoking also is linked to gum disease and tooth loss.
Although the Food and Drug Administration has banned similar flavored cigarettes, there’s no such ban (yet) on mini cigars.
Unfortunately, more and more teens across the country are smoking mini cigars. In some states, like Maryland, statistics show that 14% of teens smoke cigars—this mirrors the rate of cigarette smoking among teens.
But Maryland isn’t ignoring the issue. Recently, the state launched a new campaign called The Cigar Trap to let teens discover the truth about these flavored brown sticks that you might see behind the checkout counter, near the candy bars and gum.
Find out more about mini cigars, including how you can tell your friends the facts behind the flavors.