Using vaping devices is popular amongst teens and young adults but are doing just as much harm as cigarettes.
Electronic cigarettes are becoming a more popular alternative to regular cigarettes but health officials are warning that they are doing more damage than previously thought, especially for young people.
The U.S. governments top medical officer, Vivek Murthy has released the report saying that e-cigarettes should be considered a public health threat.
Fast overtaking sales of regular cigarettes, the electronic variety still uses nicotine and usually contain flavoring which make it particularly popular with the younger population. However, Murthy warns that the past efforts to reduce nicotine use is being thwarted by e-cigarette use.
“It also threatens 50 years of hard-fought progress that we have made curbing tobacco use. And it places a whole new generation at risk for addiction to nicotine…”
“The message from the report is clear. Nicotine-containing products in any form, including e-cigarettes, are not safe for youth.”
The report used scientific research to look at people specifically under the age of 25 and how teenage brains in particular are vulnerable to the harmful effects of nicotine. Murthy commented in the report that “reduced impulse control, deficits in attention and cognition, and mood disorders” are common problems in younger people who inhale nicotine.
Around 2.4 million teens admitted to vaping in the past 30 days, that figure is a rise of 1.5 percent since 2011 when e-cigarettes started to become popular.
Health officials are calling for the new smoking ban to be extended to e-cigarettes to stop encouraging young people to take up the habit as well as educating pediatricians, teachers, coaches and parents to help teens and young adults to choose not to take up vaping.
“We know a great deal about what works to effectively prevent tobacco use among young people,” the report says. “Now we must apply these strategies to e-cigarettes.”
For more information on the report and the negative effects of e-cigarettes visit e-cigarettes.surgeongeneral.gov.