Teens, Hookah & E-Cigarettes

Traditional cigarette smoking may be on the decline, but nearly one in five high school students have now smoked hookah water pipes. That’s according to a new study published in the journal Pediatrics.

PluggedIn.com is reporting on the study, conducted by researchers from New York University. They found that 18% of the more than 5,500 students they surveyed had used water pipes.

Joseph Palamar, a professor at NYU, says “Surprisingly, students with more educated parents or higher personal income are at high risk of use.”

The new findings are worrisome, as evidence suggests hookah use is more damaging to health than cigarettes.

Dr. Palamar points out that hookahs come in a variety of flavors and are less likely to leave users smelling like cigarette smoke after use. He says “This may allow some users to better conceal their use from their parents.”

Another study has found that many kids are smoking so called “e-cigs”—and suffering the consequences. A new Centers for Disease Control and Prevention study found that calls to poison centers involving e-cigarettes is on the rise.

Many of those calls involved people 20 and older—but get this–more than half of the calls to poison control involved children under the age of 5!

And what do you know—advertising for e-cigarettes has exploded in the past 3 years, much of it targeting teens and young adults.

A new report says that e-cig ad exposure jumped 256% among 12- to 17-year-olds and 321% among 18- to 24-year-olds.

The e-cig makers bought time on cable networks like AMC, CMT, VH1, Comedy Central, WGN America and TV Land. More than 80% of these advertisements were for the brand known as “blu eCigs.”

To learn more about e-cigarettes and their dangers, visit the American Academy of Pediatrics website for parents, healthychildren.org.

I’m Bill Maier for Shine.FM.

Listen to today’s audio here.