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NAQC Newsroom: Research

Flavorings and Perceived Harm and Addictiveness of E-cigarettes among Youth.

Thursday, July 14, 2016  
Posted by: Natalia Gromov
Cooper, Maria; Harrell, Melissa B.; Pérez, Adriana; Delk, Joanne; Perry, Cheryl L.
Flavorings and Perceived Harm and Addictiveness of E-cigarettes among Youth.
Tobacco Regulatory Science, Volume 2, Number 3, July 2016, pp. 278-289(12)
 
Given the increasing trend in use of electronic cigarettes (“e-cigarettes“) among youth, it is crucial to understand how these products are perceived and how these perceptions are associated with their decision whether or not to use them. This is a cross-sectional analysis of data from a rapid response surveillance system of 6th, 8th and 10th grade students' tobacco use behaviors (sample [n] = 3704 from a population of students [N] = 434,601). We used weighted logistic regression models to investigate the relationship between perceptions of harm and addictiveness and e-cigarette use, including the use of flavored and non-flavored e-cigarettes.
 
Compared to youth who did not use e-cigarettes, ever and current e-cigarette users had higher odds of reporting that e-cigarettes were “not at all harmful“ to health and “not at all addictive.“ Ever and current e-cigarette users had higher odds of reporting that flavored e-cigarettes were “less harmful“ than non-flavored e-cigarettes, compared to youth who did not use e-cigarettes. These findings warrant attention given that nicotine is an addictive substance whose effects on the adolescent brain are potentially negative. Youth e-cigarette users perceived lower harm from flavored e-cigarettes, which is worrisome given emerging research documenting harmful constituents in certain e-cigarette flavorings.

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