Concerns Regarding The E-Cigarette Trend
Even though they have been marketed as a healthier alternative to traditional cigarettes, e-cigarettes also known as e-cigs, vape pens or dabbers poses significant health challenge to our population. Since e-cigarettes contain nicotine, many users may become addicted much like they would if they smoked regular cigarettes. Further, from a drug abuse standpoint, other compounds, such as hash oil, can be vaporized in these devices, effectively allowing people to smoke marijuana virtually undetected.
The e-cigarette phenomenon is particularly concerning when it comes to younger users because they can effectively hide their use as the “smoke” created is actually odorless and less visible than burning tobacco. Further, it seems that a large number of users do not stop with an e-cigarette. A CDC National Youth Tobacco Survey in 2013 show that over 75% of younger e-cigarette users also smoked regular cigarettes. The CDC also estimates that up to 10% of high school students used e-cigs in 2012.
The dangers of these e-cigarettes are not fully known, as they are not regulated like traditional cigarettes are. While many claim that they are a healthier alternative to tobacco cigarettes and may in fact help with nicotine withdrawal, it seems that e-cigarettes are introducing more people to nicotine than before. As a result, this trend poses a significant concern to public health.