NORTHAMPTON, Mass. (WWLP) – Now that school is in session, the Hampshire Council of Governments wants to remind parents about a tobacco trend that gaining popularity with teens.
E-cigarettes aren’t the only thing parents should be concerned about, but also vapor pens that are sweet, not expensive and easy to get. The Tobacco Free Community Partnership says these products are not regulated by the FDA and there’s no way to how much nicotine or other chemicals they contain.
Between 2011 and 2013, the percentage of state high school students who’ve used e-cigarettes has more than doubled to 10.7%. They come in fruity flavors and according to the Director of the Tobacco Free Community Partnership, are often marketed as ways to stop smoking.
“The price is very low, very affordable, and because they are targeting youth, parents need to know that this could be a gateway to using tobacco products down the road. They are considered to be a cessation device, but they are not,” Michele Komosa, Director of Tobacco Free Community Partnership said.
New data from the National Youth Tobacco Survey shows that students who’ve smoked e-cigarettes are almost twice as likely to want to smoke conventional cigarettes. Unlike cigarettes, e-cigarettes can be sold to teens under age 18 because they don’t contain any tobacco.