Top US doctor urges 'aggressive' steps against e-cigarettes

21 December, 2018, 17:17 | Author: Denise Dawson
  • Vaping devices

In an advisory December 18, Surgeon General Jerome Adams said parents, teachers, health professionals, and government officials must take "aggressive steps" to keep children from using e-cigarettes.

Adams, the government's top doctor, issued an advisory on Tuesday stressing the importance of protecting children from nicotine addiction and the health risks associated with e-cigarettes.

The CDC says that nicotine can harm the brain development of young people.

The top United States doctor on Tuesday (Dec 18) called for "aggressive" action against e-cigarette use, which he said has exploded to epidemic proportions among youth and puts their health and brain development at risk.

"We need to protect our kids from all tobacco products, including all shapes and sizes of e-cigarettes", Adams said in a news release.

The latest federal figures show that 3.6 million teens use e-cigarettes, which works out to 1 in 5 high school students and 1 in 20 middle school students, the AP reported.

In all, more than 3.6 million U.S. youth, including one in 20 middle school students, use e-cigarettes. "We are committed to preventing youth access of JUUL products".

Jerome Adams
Jerome Adams the US surgeon general Credit AP

He added: "E-cigarette aerosol is not harmless". Even more worrisome, a growing body of research suggests that teens who vape are more likely to try regular cigarettes.

According to a spokesperson with Albuquerque Public Schools, the district bans e-cigarettes but they're updating their policy to cover all of the bases. Analysts now estimate the company controls more than 75 percent of the USA e-cigarette market.

"We included e-cigarettes and vaping devices in the policy because nicotine in any form is highly addictive", said Cerri Banks, dean of students at the college.

The surgeon general's advisory notes that each Juul cartridge, or pod, contains as much nicotine as a pack of cigarettes.

"JUUL Labs shares a common goal with the Surgeon General and other federal health regulators - preventing youth from initiating on nicotine", according to a statement from Victoria Davis, a Juul spokesperson.

Last month, Juul shut down its Facebook and Instagram accounts and halted in-store sales of its flavored pods.

Omaha high school students say they don't have to look far to see it, "we mostly see it in the bathrooms. lunchrooms, if a teacher is away we'll see it there", said Burke High School sophomore, Anna Anthony". The flavors remain available via age-restricted online sales. And local authorities should use strategies, such as bans on indoor vaping and retail restrictions, to discourage vaping by young people.

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