Wed Jul 29 15:08:55 PDT 2015
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Growing Demand for E-Cigarettes
Bridgette Bjorlo

E-cigarettes are on the rise throughout the country. And while some say it presents a safer alternative to smoking, some health experts fear the devices are reversing the progress in reducing teen smoking. Many say that e-cigarettes serve as a tool to help smokers quit. Smokers say the hardest part about putting down the pipe is losing that oral fixation. That’s where e-cigs come in. The alternative to traditional smoking substitutes tobacco for varying levels of nicotine, flavorings and other substances. But you can get e-cigs with no nicotine at all. Nate Plummer of Rollin EZ Tobacco said the goal is to start traditional smokers at a higher level of nicotine and then gradually wean them off. The process worked for him, and now the only e-cigs he smokes are nicotine-free. While most research suggests that e-cigarettes are less harmful than traditional smoking, the practice comes with its share of health risks. Because the devices are relatively new, it will be years before scientists can determine the long-term health effects of e-cigarettes. Another issue remains the growing rates of e-cig usage among teens. A University of Southern California study, involving two-thousand 11th and 12th graders, revealed about one-fourth had tried e-cigarettes and almost 10-percent were current users. That nearly doubles the number of teens who smoke traditional cigarettes. But here in Alabama, the state bans the sale of e-cigarettes to minors, a law that is strictly enforced.

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