Teenagers who vape are more likely to smoke tobacco in the future, a new study has found.
Scientists from the RAND research centre suggest that using e-cigarettes could be a gateway to smoking real cigarettes over time.
The study also showed that teenagers who smoke and vape are likely to use both more heavily.
‘For young people, using these products may actually lead to more harm in the long run,’ lead author, Dr Michael Dunbar, said.
‘Vaping may be normalising tobacco and nicotine use among young people.
‘Using one product may “lower the bar” for going on to use other types of products.’
Next generation of smokers
NHS figures show a quarter (25%) of 11 to 15-year-olds have used e-cigarettes.
The same study from NHS Digital found that 93% of regular smokers reported having ever used an e-cigarette.
‘We need to protect children and young people from the harms of nicotine by regulating electronic cigarettes,’ Dr John Middleton, of the Faculty of Public Health, said to the BBC back in 2015.
‘Our concern is that if we wait for proof that electronic cigarettes could act as a gateway to smoking cigarettes, it will already have happened.
‘The tobacco industry has the opportunity to recruit its next generation of smokers.’
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