U.S. surgeon general claims e-cigarettes harmful for young people

The U.S. surgeon general is calling for action on the use of e-cigarettes among young people, and has released a report emphasizing its harmful effects.

ROCKVILLE, MARYLAND (Next Media Online) — The U.S. surgeon general is calling for action on the use of e-cigarettes among young people, and has released a report emphasizing its harmful effects.

E-cigarettes have been touted as a healthier alternative to regular smoking, which produce tar and carbon monoxide through burning.

However, according to a report released by U.S. Surgeon General Vivek Murthy, it is now the most commonly used form of smoking among youth. A 900% increase has been reported among middle and high school students between 2011 and 2015.

But e-cigarettes still contain the drug nicotine, which when exposed to developing teen brains, makes them more susceptible to addiction, mood disorders, and lower impulse control.

Some claim e-cigarettes are a gateway to other tobacco products, with some evidence suggesting it may be linked to alcohol and drug use as well.

Secondhand aerosol released into the air during vaping also has been found to contain potentially harmful, cancer-causing chemicals.

The FDA already restricted the sale of vaping devices to minors under 18 in August, but Murthy believes further action is necessary. Murthy is calling for the inclusion of e-cigarettes in smoking bans, increases in taxes and price, and regulation of marketing practices that mostly target the youth.