New study debunks vapor’s role in teen gateway to smoking

New study debunks vapor’s role in teen gateway to smoking

November 5, 2019

The so-called “gateway effect” that claims vaping leads to teens turning to combustible cigarettes might not be a reality, according a new study.

Using e-cigarettes doesn’t raise the likelihood a teenager would smoke, according to the study by U.S. researchers. Smoking can be entirely attributable to other factors affecting adolescents’ inclination toward cigarettes, such as parental education, peer smoking, anxiety and other substance abuse, according to a story on bloomberg.com

E-cigarette sales have been hit amid a regulatory crackdown in the U.S. amid concerns that producers like Juul Labs Inc. have been marketing to underage smokers. In the U.K., public health officials have recently reiterated their stance that e-cigarettes are far less harmful than combustibles and urged smokers to make the switch.

The study examined the relationship between vaping and conventional cigarette smoking, looking at 14 shared risk factors, based on surveys of U.S. eighth- and 10th-graders conducted in 2015 and 2016, according to the story.

While the vapers were more likely to smoke cigarettes, the effect was muted once the analysis accounted for risk factors that are shared between the two activities. However, the researchers did find an association between vaping and lifetime cigarette use and said further study is needed to determine if there is a causal link.

The findings are appearing in Nicotine & Tobacco Research, a scientific journal whose publisher does not accept any funding from the tobacco industry, the story states.

The research by Arielle Selya at Sanford Research in Sioux Falls, South Dakota and Sooyong Kim at the University of North Dakota in Grand Forks was supported by the University of North Dakota, the National Institute on Drug Abuse and the National Institute for General Medical Sciences.

Category: Breaking News

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