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E-cigarettes may be gateway to addiction for teens

Vaping is popular among adolescents, even if they never smoked

By
6:01pm, February 13, 2015

SAN JOSE, Calif. —Teenagers are using e-cigarettes more than any other tobacco product and for many, it’s the first time they’ve tried a tobacco product at all, a new survey finds. The data are concerning, said Wilson Compton, the Deputy Director of the National Institute on Drug Abuse. While e-cigarettes are touted as a means to help adult smokers quit, the devices might prime young brains for addiction, Compton said during a news conference February 13 at the annual meeting of the American Association for the Advancement of Science.

The data come from the NIH’s Monitoring the Future survey, conducted by the University of Michigan, which tracks substance use trends in eight-, 10th- and 12th-graders. Each year the researchers survey about 40,000 to 50,000 teens. While daily cigarette smoking by teens has decreased significantly in the past five years, e-cigarette smoking, or vaping, is popular, even among teens who have never smoked, data from 2014

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