Appeal to Young People
Youth and young adults cite a variety of reasons for using e-cigarettes. These include:
- Taste, including the flavors available in e-cigarettes
- The belief that e-cigarettes are less harmful than other tobacco products
Flavored e-cigarettes are very popular, especially with young adults. More than 9 of 10 young adult e-cigarette users said they use e-cigarettes flavored to taste like menthol, alcohol, candy, fruit, chocolate, or other sweets. More than 8 of 10 youth ages 12-17 who use e-cigarettes said they use flavored e-cigarettes.
Youth tobacco use in any form, including e-cigarettes, is unsafe. But a recent national survey showed that more than 6 of 10 American teens believe that e-cigarettes cause little or only some harm as long as they are used sometimes but not every day. Nearly 20% of young adults believe e-cigarettes cause no harm, more than half believe that they are moderately harmful, and 26.8% believe they are very harmful.
Young people who use e-cigarettes are more likely to believe they cause no harm than those who have never used e-cigarettes.
The Bottom Line
Nicotine exposure during adolescence, a critical period for brain development, can cause addiction and can harm the developing brain.
Scientists are still learning more about how e-cigarettes affect health. However, there is already enough evidence to justify efforts to prevent e-cigarette use by young people.
Because most tobacco use starts during adolescence, actions to protect our nation’s young people from a lifetime of nicotine addiction are critical.
Working together, we can keep America’s youth and young adults safe from the dangers associated with tobacco use and nicotine addiction.
Source: Get the Facts on E-cigarettes | Know the Risks: E-cigarettes & Young People | U.S. Surgeon General’s Report