Saturday, 20 January, 2018

Do young users of noncigarette tobacco products progress to conventional cigarettes?

Macao puts new tobacco control law into effect Healthcast : A Study on Teenagers & Tobacco Use
Anna Jefferson | 12 January, 2018, 21:10

Noncigarette tobacco products, such as electronic cigarettes, hookahs, noncigarette combustible tobacco and smokeless tobacco, are popular among young people and it's important to understand whether they encourage smoking of conventional cigarettes.

"The estimated health risks of non-cigarette tobacco products should include the additional health consequences of future cigarette use", study authors wrote. When the teens were asked once again about their use of tobacco, the responses were telling.

Researchers followed 10,000 nonsmokers ranging in age from 12 to 17 years old for one year to see how their use of other tobacco products influenced the odds that they would become smokers.

The bureau said the objective of this new law is to reduce the consumption of tobacco products and electronic cigarettes in Macao, and to protect the health of the public, in particular young people.

However, as public health experts have previously pointed out in relation to similar findings, such results reporting ever use could easily be attributed to the fact that people who have a tendency to experiment with tobacco products in general, are also more likely to experiment with cigarettes.

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Although rates of smoking among teens have declined steadily in the past 20 years, in 2016 about 3.9 million middle and high school students were using at least 1 tobacco product, and 1.8 million were using two or more, the JAMA Pediatrics report said. "But when you look at these other products too, like smokeless tobacco and cigarillos, they're having the same magnitude of relationship with future smoking", said Shannon Lea Watkins, a postdoctoral fellow at the Center for Tobacco Control Research and Education at the University of California, San Francisco.

The researchers believe that e-cigarette use provides a "catalyst" which triggers a "causal pathway from initial use of e-cigarettes to tobacco smoking among youths".

The newly reported analysis of the PATH data was unique because of its large size and the inclusion of both e-cigarette and non-e-cigarette tobacco products in the assessment of smoking risk. They found non-users had a 26-percent higher chance of trying a tobacco product after watching online videos or using social networking sites to view tobacco products.

They added that the study has direct implications for regulatory policy aimed at preventing youth smoking.

"We found that the association with future smoking was of approximately the same strength regardless of what type of product adolescents had tried initially", Dr. Chaffee said in an email to The Washington Times. It is also prohibited to sell tobacco products in casinos.

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