Kokomo Tribune; Kokomo, Indiana

Opinion

October 10, 2013

BILL STANCZYKIEWICZ: Teen use of e-cigarettes is a troubling trend

New nicotine delivery system neither hip nor glamorous.

New survey results reveal a new challenge in the on-going battle against teen smoking.

According to the National Youth Tobacco Survey, the use of e-cigarettes among high school students has doubled, from 5 percent in 2011 to 10 percent in 2012. Usage among middle school students also has doubled, increasing to 2.7 percent from 1.4 percent the previous year.

In addition, the survey revealed that among teenagers who currently use e-cigarettes, 76 percent are smoking regular cigarettes. Federal health officials have noticed.

“We are worried that e-cigarettes will help kids overcome their inhibitions and re-normalize smoking and undermine the progress we have made [in reducing youth smoking],” said Dr. Tim McAfee, director of the Centers for Disease Control’s Office on Smoking and Health. “There is no upside to teens being exposed to e-cigarettes.”

This trend is especially troubling for Indiana, one of the heaviest smoking states in the country. Indiana has the highest rate (14 percent) of older teens and young adults, ages 18-25, who have started smoking in the last year, and the 11th worst rate (7 percent) of adolescents, ages 12-17, who have lit up in the last 12 months.

E-cigarettes use a heating element, powered by a re-chargeable battery, to transform a liquid into a vapor, which then is inhaled. The liquid contains nicotine and often is flavored with fruit, mint or chocolate. E-cigarettes look like a regular cigarette or cigar, although some models are made to look like a pen or even a USB thumb drive to mask their true identity.

A new Indiana law bans the sale of e-cigarettes to people under the age of 18. State Rep. Matt Lehman, R-Berne, who authored the bipartisan legislation with two other Republicans and three Democrats, explained, “Given their addictive nature, I believe that e-cigarettes should be subject to the same laws as regular cigarettes when it comes to minors.”

Text Only | Photo Reprints
Opinion
  • Road must be made safer Eight months ago, the Indiana Department of Transportation opened the new U.S. 31 bypass east of Kokomo. Joining Mayor Greg Goodnight was Gov. Mike Pence. Even the Kokomo High School marching band performed at the ribbon-cutting ceremony. It was the

    July 24, 2014

  • SEN. JIM BUCK: New laws offer help for kids Families with children who have special needs often face difficulties finding the best care or treatment for their specific circumstance. During the 2014 legislative session, the Indiana General Assembly passed several initiatives to assist these fam

    July 24, 2014

  • LETTERS: Christians must stand with Israel 'As Christians we must stand with life' The present conflict in Israel is with Hamas, recognized even in Egypt as a terrorist organization. Recently Hamas formed a unity government with the Palestinian Authority in Gaza. They're now the government in

    July 24, 2014

  • BILL STANCZYKIEWICZ: Youth sports leagues are on troubling decline An important youth development activity is looking to end a recent losing streak. Participation in organized youth sports leagues for baseball, football, basketball and soccer declined by 4 percent between 2008-2012, according to a report in the Wall

    July 24, 2014

  • Keep eye out for kids

    With most local schools welcoming students in a couple of weeks — and Kokomo schools beginning class Aug. 5 (yes, a week from this coming Tuesday) — it’s important for motorists to think about safe driving as children travel to and from school.Law en

    July 23, 2014

  • MAUREEN HAYDEN: Expiring term heightens urgency of legislator's mission State Rep. Rebecca Kubacki had plans for her return to the General Assembly next January.The two-term Republican from Kosciusko County wanted to exert “full force” to roll back a law that prevents the children of undocumented immigrants from paying i

    July 23, 2014

  • LETTERS: Let's hope 7th Circuit sides with couples Let’s hope 7th Circuit sides with couplesIf you blinked over the past month, you probably missed some news about marriage equality in Indiana.First, a federal court ruled that the state’s ban on marriage for same-sex couples was unconstitutional, whi

    July 23, 2014

  • CECIL BOHANON: Spend down surplus? Been there, done that Back in 1998, the state of Indiana had more than $1.3 billion in surplus funds in its general account. This was about 57 days of state spending. The state had total surplus funds of more than $2 billion that was over 24 percent of its annual operatin

    July 23, 2014

  • Rob Burgess House of Burgess: Bush? Clinton? Next, please

    Here comes a sentence I don’t usually find myself typing: I agree with Barbara Bush on something. Jan. 20, C-SPAN aired her installment in the series “First Ladies: Influence and Image,” which was filmed at Bush’s Houston home. “Do you think there is room for another Bush in The White House?” asked host Peter Slen. “This is a great American country, a great country, and if we can’t find more than two or three families to run for high office, that’s silly, because there are great governors and great eligible people to run,” said Bush. “I think Kennedys, Clintons, Bushes; there are just more families than that.”

    July 23, 2014 1 Photo

  • State aims at outbreaks More than 200 Western School Corp. students were vaccinated for chickenpox after an outbreak in March 2012.The virus was confirmed to have infected five fifth-graders, the Howard County Health Department reported. It acted quickly to prevent the infe

    July 22, 2014

Featured Ads
Only on our website
AP Video
Arizona Prison Chief: Execution Wasn't Botched Calif. Police Investigate Peacock Shooting Death Raw: Protesters, Soldiers Clash in West Bank Police: Doctor Who Shot Gunman 'Saved Lives' 'Modern Family' Star on Gay Athletes Coming Out MN Twins Debut Beer Vending Machine DA: Pa. Doctor Fired Back at Hospital Gunman Raw: Iowa Police Dash Cam Shows Wild Chase Obama Seeks Limits on US Company Mergers Abroad Large Family to Share NJ Lottery Winnings U.S. Flights to Israel Resume After Ban Lifted Official: Air Algerie Flight 'probably Crashed' TSA Administrator on Politics and Flight Bans Raw: National Guard Helps Battle WA Wildfires Raw: Ukraine's Donetsk Residents Flee Senators Push to End Hamas Threat in Cease-Fire A Young Victim's Premonition, Hug Before MH17 Raw: Deadly Storm Hits Virginia Campground Death Penalty Expert: 'This is a Turning Point' Raw: MH17 Victim's Bodies Arrive in Netherlands
Parade
Magazine

Click HERE to read all your Parade favorites including Hollywood Wire, Celebrity interviews and photo galleries, Food recipes and cooking tips, Games and lots more.
Obituaries
Poll