Daily Vaper

Vaping Rates Are Falling For Teens Despite Alleged ‘Gateway’ Effect To Smoking

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Steve Birr Vice Reporter
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A survey is adding to evidence showing that electronic cigarettes are not causing teens to smoke, and are actually declining in popularity with America’s youth.

Indiana University’s School of Public Health-Bloomington released its annual Indiana Youth Survey on Wednesday, showing drops in the monthly vaping rates of kids at nearly every grade level. Anti-vaping activists often push the claim that e-cigarettes serve as a gateway to smoking cigarettes and risk hooking a new generation on tobacco, according to Eagle Country Online.

Monthly vaping among 12th graders dropped from 21.6 percent to 19.7 percent in 2016. Only 7th grade vaping use experienced a slight increase, rising from 4.9 percent to 5 percent. Despite the declines, which reflect the national trend, officials in the state are still worried about young Americans using e-cigarettes.

“Even with a decline in use, we are concerned by the numbers of youth using electronic vapor products, as well as traditional tobacco products, such as cigarettes,” Ruth Gassman, executive director of the Indiana Prevention Resource Center, told Eagle Country Online. “All tobacco or nicotine-based products have health risks.”

While e-cigarette use briefly jumped when the products first became popular in 2011, trends suggest the novelty of vaping for teens is wearing off.

A survey from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention released June 15 revealed that after a rapid increase in youth vaping between 2011 and 2015, teens are now giving up the habit. The number of middle school and high school students who use a vaping device dropped from 3 million to 2.2 million in 2016.

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Steve Birr