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FDA Puts E-Cigarette Companies on Notice Over Teen Access

E-cigarette companies claim they don’t market to teenagers, but the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) doesn’t believe that the makers of JUULs and similar vaping devices are trying hard enough. In fact, youths are vaping in such “epidemic proportions” that the FDA just hammered in its largest enforcement action in history, by sending more than 1,300 warning letters and fines to retailers for selling them to teens, the Boston Herald reports. Schools, which are having trouble enforcing no-vaping rules on their premises, praised the action.

In the wake of a growing number of public ordinances and simple culture trends against conventional tobacco smoking, e-cigarettes have quickly replaced “real” cigarettes in popularity. One reason they rose to the top like this is because they were initially promoted as a helpmate for quitting tobacco smoking. But then, tobacco companies created ways to not only make vaping the latest fad, but addictive — and admit it or not, the fad has spread to underage young people.

Another reason that JUULs and their like have become so popular is that there is a certain perceived assurance that e-cigs are safe and harmless to your health. Plus, unlike combustible cigarettes, the vapor is often odorless, making it difficult to detect once the e-cig device has been put away. The thing is they are NOT harmless and, with the new flavors and other additives in them, they are NOT completely “unnoticeable.”

People have been smoking for thousands of years, and we all know someone who has struggled to stop smoking. Hardly anyone, in fact, would argue that they’re not an addiction that’s hard to quit. But, when it comes to vaping products, vapers who have tried them agree they have a much stronger nicotine “hit” than other e-cigs — which totally debunks the idea that they’re made to help you quit smoking all together.

And while producers claim they’re not targeting kids, antismoking advocates say they most certainly are, merely through the fact that e-cigs have a “cool factor” that’s just plain hard to resist. But “cool” doesn’t equate to health, and to that end, I believe that it’s important to learn everything you can about how e-cigs are made, and the recent data that show they can be just as dangerous to both the vaper and those exposed to vaping fumes than regular cigarettes, and to support the FDA’s move to crack down on the makers and sellers of them.