Our Readers Write: Keep adolescents away from vaping

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Letter to the editor:

Worries about adolescent vaping are well-founded

Rising e-cigarette use among children and adolescents is highly concerning. Adolescents who vape are likely to switch to or add cigarette smoking (“Smoke shop in La Jolla raises alarm with some residents due to proximity to schools,” Nov. 3, La Jolla Light).

This is surprising because combustible cigarettes are far less enticing and are malodorous when compared with e-cigarettes.

There are several factors that contribute to this transition from e-cigarettes to smoking. Nicotine addiction is one of them. Adolescents who vape become highly addicted to nicotine, such that they are less bothered by the smell or look of cigarettes because they are driven to get more nicotine into their system.

Other variables that may contribute to this switch include curiosity, cigarettes being less expensive and more accessible, and e-cigarettes lessening the perception of smoking being harmful to health.

With evidence building that e-cigarettes lead to initiation of conventional tobacco and have their own harmful effects on health, it is important to protect our children from initiating vaping.

Enny Banjo and Dr. Laura Crotty Alexander

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