6-Jan-15 2:30 PM  CST

Use of E-Cigarettes on the Rise with Teens

We have all heard about the dangers of nicotine and cigarette smoke. Proven links to premature births, cancers, as well as lung and heart disease have placed cigarettes and the tobacco industry on healthcare’s list of taboo. While use of nicotine has taken a dramatic decrease since the 60’s and 70’s it still continues to be a major health concern, particularly among teens. However, a recent study from the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) shows a decrease in cigarette smoking among teenagers in 2013, the lowest since 1991.

While the news in mostly good, there does seem to be some marker of concern as E-cigarette use among teenagers has taken a dramatic spike. E-cigarettes, or electronic cigarettes are devices that mimic tobacco based cigarettes by allowing the user to inhale nicotine based vapor or other favored vaporized liquid. Some feel e-cigarettes are a much safer and healthy alternative to traditional cigarettes, while others feel they may simply be a gateway to traditional cigarette use.

A recent study conducted by the CDC found that e-cigarette use is quite popular with teenagers and young adults. In fact a recent survey showed that e-cigarette use among teenagers jumped from 2.8% in 2013 to 4.5% in 2014. Use among high school students who had never smoked any form of tobacco or tobacco product, but had smoked e-cigarettes increased from 10-12% within the same time period. Moreover, e-cigarettes were even found to be prevalent among middle school students with 3% of the 20,000 students surveyed stating they had tried or currently used e-cigarettes.

Most health experts believe e-cigarettes are still a safer alternative to traditional cigarettes, but warn they still have the potential for addiction. Given their relative newness the full affects of e-cigarettes remains to be seen. One thing is for certain; it's a 2.5 billion dollar business that doesn’t seem to be going away anytime soon.

 

 

 

Resources:

“E-Cigarette use by Teens Rising” (2014) Wall Street Journal, http://www.wsj.com/articles/e-cigarette-use-by-youths-rising-government-study-shows-1415901602, retrieved, 02.January, 2015

Griffin, R., (2014) “E-Cigarettes 101”, (2014) WebMD, http://www.wsj.com/articles/e-cigarette-use-by-youths-rising-government-study-shows-1415901602, 02.January, 2015


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Source: Sandy Andrews  

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