Everybody is getting into the e-cigarette craze these days — even kids!
A newly released survey shows that an increasing number of middle and high school students are trying e-cigarettes.
The survey, by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, tracked the use among some 19,000 students in grades 6 through 12 in 2011 and another 25,000 in 2012. In 2011, about 3% had tried e-cigarettes and in 2012 that had increased to 7%.
The survey notes that number amounts to some 1.8 million students.
…health officials are worried. The new study suggests many kids are now getting a first taste of nicotine through e-cigarettes and then moving on to regular tobacco products, they say.
Unlike conventional smokes, the federal government does not yet regulate e-cigarettes, although more than 20 states have banned store sales to minors. The devices began to appear in the United States in late 2006, but marketing has exploded in the last couple of years.
While regulations to prevent more children for obtaining e-cigarettes are in the works, manufacturers say such efforts should not curb or prevent adult smokers from having access.
Future regulations shouldn’t “stifle what may be the most significant harm reduction opportunity that has ever been made available to smokers,” Murray Kessler, chief executive of Lorillard Inc. (LO), the nation’s third-biggest tobacco company and owner of Blu Ecigs, told the AP.