E-Cigarettes: Helping Teens Start Smoking?
E-Cigarettes Attracting Teens
Electronic cigarettes have been found to be slightly more effective than the nicotine patch at helping people quit smoking. Great! However, what’s not so “great” is that it’s safer image is tempting more teens to trying them out, instead making them addicted to nicotine and, eventually, cigarettes.1
Many scientists believe that while nicotine is a highly addictive substance, it does not cause cancer.1 Instead, the cause of cancer from smoking is linked to the toxic chemicals that are created when tobacco and filler products are burned.1 Intended to give nicotine addicts a taste of their drug without the health problems, eventually helping them quit their dangerous habit, it seemed like a good thing.1 Maybe it is—when used for the right reasons.
E-Cigarettes Flavoring an Added Incentive?
As you can add flavoring to the nicotine vapors you breath in through the e-cigarette, many state that this is what draws kids to it.1 Flavors like gummy bear and cookies and cream are kid-friendly and, in turn, encourage them to develop a lifelong addiction.1 Even scarier? Only 20 states specifically forbid the sale of e-cigarettes to children.1 Easy to get, easy to use.
Although tobacco use amongst teens has declined since the 1990s, but the number of middle- and high-school students who have tried e-cigarettes is now one in 10.1 This is double the number of 2011.1 Adult smokers who smoke daily typically began when they were kids, meaning that kids who use e-cigarettes may stick with them for life.1
E-Cigarettes: Keep Them Away From Children & Teens
A relatively new product, and one that is yet to be FDA-approved, the long-term complications of using e-cigarettes is still relatively unknown.1 There also aren’t any laws in place requiring manufacturers to tell you exactly what you are inhaling.1 In fact, in 2009, an FDA test on a small number of e-cigarette samples found carcinogens to which users were potentially exposed.1 Are they safe, or are they not safe? The truth is, we just don’t know yet.1 What we do know is we need to keep them out of our children’s hands.1
 Christensen, J. (2013, September 13). E-cigarettes: Healthy tool or gateway device?. CNN.com. Retrieved September 19, 2013, from http://www.cnn.com/2013/09/12/health/e-cigarettes-debate/index.html?hpt=he_c2