The U.S. study looked at the use of tobacco cigarettes, cigars and hookahs among ninth-graders in Los Angeles over a two-year period. The study found that young teenagers who use e-cigarettes are more likely to go on to smoke tobacco products.
The e-cigarette users were:
- More than twice as likely to go on to smoke cigarettes.
- Five times more likely to smoke cigars (11th graders!).
- Three times more likely to smoke hookahs.
The study does not say if using e-cigarettes caused the graduation to tobacco. It says there is a “high association” between the two.
A second study from Great Britain takes a different view. It said e-cigarettes help adult tobacco users kick the habit. It said e-cigarettes are less harmful than tobacco products.
Almost all of the 2.6 million adults using e-cigarettes in Great Britain are current or former smokers. Many of them are using e-cigarettes to help them quit smoking. The agency said, among adults and young people who have never smoked, very few are becoming regular e-cigarette users.
The number of people puffing e-cigarettes worldwide is growing rapidly. Annual sales are now about $7 billion.
There are no federal rules about who can buy e-cigarettes. There is almost no regulation of the product. Many states are making their own rules about who can buy them.
The U.S. Food and Drug Administration has promised that rules are coming.
Source: The Wall Street Journal August 18, 2015