Have Electronic Cigarettes Become The New Route To Nicotine Addiction?

By Norm Jackons

Scientists are saying that the emergence of electronic cigarettes can be the beginning on the new phase towards a route for nicotine addiction to the youth. E-cigarettes are battery-powered devices that are designed to look like regular cigarettes. The vapes are being promoted as healthier and safer alternatives to tobacco. The main reason that made vapes safer than tobacco is the absence of harmful chemicals that has been causing millions of deaths each year. But the popularity of electronic cigarettes raises serious worry and concern among health advocates on how electronic cigarettes are catching up with the youth.

A new study that assessed the e-cigarette use in Korea         showed that it is possible that electronic cigarette use among youths will be on the rise. The devices remain largely unregulated and there are some places where the youth can have easy access to it. Some big metropolitan cities around the world have increased the legal purchasing age from 18 to 21 years old. However, it remains more of an exception than the rule.

Despite the fact that electronic cigarettes are made available to the youth, the penetration to the youth has been seen as substantial. A study from the Center for Disease Control and Prevention showed that the usage of electronic cigarettes among the youth has doubled in 2012 from 2011 figures. It has been estimated that 1.78 million students have been using the devices in 2012 according to the report released by the CDC.

In the Korean study it was revealed that four in five Korean adolescent smokers are dual users. It means that they are using electronic cigarettes and regular cigarettes at the same time. It is possible that the youth are using electronic cigarettes as a form of smoking-cessation aid. This is also apparent in the report that CDC based their pronouncements. Most of American youths that have been using electronic cigarettes are already tobacco smokers. The usage of adolescent smokers of electronic cigarettes may be consistent to the marketing message that vaping device makers are trying to put across all these time.

If this behavior proves true then the aim of electronic cigarettes can be spot on. Makers of vapes have been pushing electronic cigarettes as smoking-cessation aids. A small Italian study showed the potential of electronic cigarettes to help smokers quit smoking. In that study, 21 percent of people that were using electronic cigarettes have quit smoking after 30 days. The number increased to 47 percent after a year.

The Korean study shows that eight percent of the people that currently using conventional cigarettes. This means that smokers are likely to use electronic cigarettes than non-smokers. The usage odds are higher among cigarette smokers that are trying to quit than those who are trying to get addicted to nicotine but previously are non-smokers.

However, health advocates are fearful that electronic cigarettes may actually entice non-smokers to try nicotine and actually embroiled in a web of addiction. Researchers found out that it is possible that non-smokers will become addicted by way of electronic cigarette use. They are worried that the usage of electronic cigarettes may reduce the odds that the youth will actually quit smoking.

The youth may no longer pursue quitting because they are not getting the harm that is being provided by conventional cigarettes since they are using electronic cigarettes. It may also reduce the odds that young people will attempt to quit smoking.

The new study can send a mixed signal. The important thing to note is the fact that more young smokers are finally seeing the benefits of quitting conventional tobacco cigarettes. Whether or not the use of electronic cigarettes will lead to quitting that would be reserved to an entirely different debate.

About the author:

Norm is an e-cig enthusiast and a reviewer from Ecig-Reviews.net – a popular electronic cigarette information and comparison site. He’s an ex-smoker, who never needs to turn back to regular fags any more because of vapes.