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Vaping skeptics are relying on hyperbole.  

As the industry continues to outperform financial expectations, critics are attempting to synch an unproven teen notion, linking e-cigarette popularity with renewed interest in traditional cigarettes, according to MedPage Today. 

It’s an exaggerated statement and shouldn’t be taken seriously.  

At least that’s the opinion of a recent combined study conducted by associates of Cardiff University in Great Britain and BMJ journal Tobacco Control. Cardiff’s Graham Moore, PhD., summarized the findings:  

While e-cigarettes have exploded onto the American teen social scene, combustible cigarette smoking has maintained a downward trajectory.  

Backing up elements of Moore’s study, the National Institute on Drug Abuse (NIDA) conducted a U.S. survey of eighth, 10th and 12th graders and last December released “alarming” data. During 2018, 37.3 percent of teens admitted to “any vaping,” compared to 20.9 percent in 2017. (https://www.scientificamerican.com/article/u-s-health-official-expresses-alarm-at-increase-in-vaping-among-teens/ 

Traditional cigarette smoking among minors has fallen from 28 percent in 1997 to five percent in 2017, according to a study titled “Monitoring the Future.” (http://www.monitoringthefuture.org/pubs/monographs/mtf-overview2017.pdf 

Speaking to MedPage Today, Moore said the rising teen vaping trend does not signal a path to “renormalize” smoking for teens.

“We would expect to see an increase if renormalization was taking place,” Moore said. “What we found was that young people’s attitudes continued to harden with regard to smoking being something that was not acceptable to do.” 

Dr. Jonathan Klein, a tobacco researcher at University of Illinois at Chicago, told MedPage Today that Moore’s conclusions, which were analyzed through data up to 2015, were flawed. The past four years, Klein argued, has been a period of technical enhancements throughout the vaping industry.  

After all, JUUL, which controls more than 70 percent of the U.S. market, was in its early stages of development in 2015 and was not available in Great Britain until last year.     

“They can’t really say there is no effect when their evidence is basically four years behind current use,” Klein said. “And a lot has happened in those four years.”

Now, that’s not an exaggerated statement and should be taken seriously.

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