Teens: E-Cigarettes May Be Just As Addictive as Traditional Ones

Many young teens are smoking e-cigarette with the idea that it’s less harmful and less addictive than traditional cigarettes. However, one research study found that this actually may not be the case.


E-cigarettes have been advertised as a means to quit smoking. Many people believe that they can be used to wean off nicotine altogether. However, some research indicates that this may not be the case. Although e-cigarettes do not burn tobacco, they do heat and vaporize a substance that contains nicotine. In fact, some states have banned the sale of e-cigarettes out of concern that it might affect the health of the young people who use it.


Certain research studies indicate that the nicotine content in e-cigarettes could lead users to actually become addicted to e-cigarettes. Furthermore e-cigarettes, some experts believe, could become a gateway to other drugs, such as traditional cigarettes and other drugs. Research also found that the addictive quality of e-cigarettes depends on the type of nicotine used in its liquid. There are three different forms of nicotine, and it’s the “free-base” nicotine that is the most addictive. The most recent research on this topic found that indeed the form of nicotine in e-cigarettes is in fact the most addictive type.


Nicotine is found in the roots of certain plants known as the nightshade family of plants and is considered a stimulant. In small doses, nicotine is used in cigarettes and has a stimulating effect when smoked. However, in large doses nicotine can be harmful. Sadly, the nicotine content found in traditional cigarettes has increased over time. One study found that American made cigarettes had an increase of nicotine of about 1.78 percent. The content of nicotine in e-cigarettes is currently not known.


Approximately 1000 people die from nicotine-related illnesses every day, including lung cancer. Another study found that those who smoke are more likely to have symptoms of depression than those who do not. Depression is associated with an increased risk for smoking, and research has found that smoking is often a behavior that depressed teens engage in as a way to self-medicate.


Furthermore, it’s common for teens to smoke when they feel social anxiety. Smoking can sometimes be a means to fit into a crowd, especially a crowd with mostly strangers. Perhaps this is the reason behind the fact that for most people who smoke, smoking began during their adolescence.


Fortunately, the rate of cigarette smoking has significantly decreased in the last 10-15 years among teens. But instead of smoking regular cigarettes, teens are smoking e-cigarettes instead. Because of this trend away from traditional cigarettes and toward e-cigarettes, it’s important to remember that this form of smoking also has its negative consequences. Although it’s advertised as a safe way to wean off traditional cigarettes, it too can foster an addiction and have an ill effect on your health.



American Chemical Society. (2015, July 22). E-cigarettes may be as addictive as traditional ones. ScienceDaily. Retrieved August 12, 2015 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2015/07/150722115527.htm