E-cigarettes are more common among children and teenagers across the United States, recent research suggests. Experts underline that there are many 14-year-old kids throughout the country, who believe that vaping is the ‘coolest thing.’
We can safely assume that these children have at least one friend that is using e-cigarettes. Public health officials underline that these electronic devices have become quite a trend over the past few years. More precisely, twice more minors are using e-cigarettes after just one year.
Although fewer people smoke traditional cigarettes, CDC specialists have concluded that e-cigarette use has already become a habit among the United States high and middle school students. The highest rates were observed from 2011 to 2012.
Besides public health officials, many parents, and teachers are concerned about the fact that these electronic devices will bring traditional cigarettes back in trend. Tim McAfee, CDC Director of the Smoking and Health Office, says that ‘We know that if kids start with e-cigarettes, there’s the potential for them to move on to cigarettes.’
He further adds that around 90 percent of regular smokers try their first cigarette as teens; therefore, parents, educators, and public health experts must join their efforts to raise awareness among these children and inform them about the risks of smoking and vaping.
Based on the CDC reports, roughly 1.78 million kids and teenagers across the country used e-cigarettes in 2015, and a high percentage of them confessed that they decided to experiment because they thought it was cool.
E-cigarettes are electronic devices powered by batteries. Besides the standard dose of nicotine, they contain other additives and flavors. Manufacturers bring many designs on the market to make these devices more appealing to consumers, while they are also cheap compared to conventional tobacco products.
Even if some adults use them to quit smoking, CDC experts underline that little is known about the actual ingredients used in e-cigarettes, besides nicotine, which is addictive.
The FDA is currently working on several projects to educate children and teenagers about the risks of smoking and vaping, while the agency also intends to ban e-cigarette use among middle and high-school students.
McAfee stresses that although e-cigarettes might be safer, we cannot assume that they are completely safe. It is a common fact that nicotine has a devastating effect on a teenager’s brain because it slows its development.
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