Part of the Campaign for Tobacco-Free Kids, Take Down Tobacco is a year-long effort that peaks every March with Take Down Tobacco National Day of Action. With the alarming rise of the use of e-cigarettes, or vapes, among youth, it’s more important than ever to work together every day to take down tobacco!

Know the Risks and Educate Youth

Research has shown that most young people who vape do not know that e-cigarettes contain nicotine, or that the e-cig aerosol in vape products is not harmless water vapor. E-cigarette flavors make it seem like these products are less harmful than cigarettes.

The Truth about Vapes

Vapes are a type of e-cigarette that usually contains nicotine, an addictive chemical found in tobacco products. Nicotine is quickly absorbed when smoked, chewed or vaped, going directly to the brain, making the user feel happy and satisfied which makes nicotine dangerously addictive.

Besides nicotine, vapes/e-cigs/e-hookahs/JUULs/mods, can contain other harmful ingredients, including: ultrafine particles that can be inhaled deep into the lungs, flavorants such as diacetyl, a chemical linked to a serious lung disease nicknamed Popcorn Lung, volatile organic compounds, and heavy metals such as nickel, tin and lead.

Not convinced? Click here to learn even more about the risks of e-cigarettes.


  • JUULs have a high level of nicotine. According to the manufacturer, a single JUUL pod contains as much nicotine as a pack of 20 regular cigarettes!
  • More people in the United States are addicted to nicotine than any other drug.
  • Research suggests that nicotine may be as addictive as heroin, cocaine or alcohol.

The Real Cost

The U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has developed a youth tobacco prevention campaign called “The Real Cost.” The FDA conducted extensive research to develop effective messaging and outreach strategies for youth for this campaign. Schools and youth organizations have a role to play in raising awareness among youth on the dangers of vape products. The FDA developed posters that you can place in student bathrooms and locker rooms on your campus that educate on the harmful chemicals in vapes. These posters may seem shocking, yet their messages resonate with teens.

Click here to download posters.

Geaux 100% Tobacco-Free


All Louisiana schools are tobacco-free.

Lawmakers cleared the air for every student in the state in 2017 by passing Act 351. The legislation prohibits smoking across more than 1,400 schools statewide. Talk about breathing room! Click here to learn more about implementing a tobacco-free policy at your school. 

Start by learning more about e-cigarettes and vapes by reading this guide from the CDC. Then click here to ensure your school’s policy complies with Louisiana law, LA RS 17:240 (A) and (B), and to find resources for effective implementation. You can also take a look at the CDC's Evidence Brief: Tobacco Industry-Sponsored Youth Prevention Programs in Schools by clicking here



Help Youth Quit

Parents, start by learning more about e-cigarettes and vapes by reading this guide from the CDC. Then start a conversation with your kids! Click here for the "Vape Talk" Conversation Guide, a resource developed by the American Lung Association or click here for a conversation tip sheet for parents created by the Surgeon General.

Educators and coaches, request a training or presentation for your school or organization by mailing tobaccofreeliving@lphi.org. Presentations include information on the health risks of vapes, nicotine dependence, tobacco industry advertising tactics and youth tobacco data. Many of these presentations are even youth led! 

You can also present the material yourself by downloading this presentation PPT slidedeck and talking points designed by the CDC for teachers, health educators and coaches to educate youth on vaping and e-cigarettes. 

SmokefreeTeen has a wide range of services to support teens in their quit journey, including a text platform, quitSTAT App, LiveHelp online chat and dedicated Quitlines. You can also share the resource below with teens.


Resources for Teenagers


What is Take Down Tobacco Day?

Take Down Tobacco National Day of Action, formerly known as Kick Butts Day, is a day where teens come together to be leaders for tobacco-free living. If you are interested, you can:

  • Hold events that raise awareness about the problem of tobacco use in your community
  • Encourage youth to reject the tobacco industry’s deceptive marketing and stay tobacco-free
  • Educate elected officials on ways to protect kids from tobacco.

While smoking has decreased among youth, the 2019 Louisiana Youth Tobacco Survey showed that e-cigarettes, or vaping, has doubled since 2017 and tripled since 2015. Any nicotine is harmful to a teenager’s still-developing brain and can negatively affect memory, learning and concentration. This is why Take Down Tobacco is such an important time for youth to value their health and take a stand against all tobacco use. There are many ways to get involved, so take a look at the resources below for ideas.