Parents less likely to know when children use e-cigarettes

Parents and/or guardians are substantially less likely to detect or suspect their children’s use of tobacco if they smoke electronic-cigarettes or smokeless tobacco, compared to traditional cigarettes, says a study published in Pediatrics (October). Moreover the study conducted by the University of California, San Francisco, indicates that when parents impose strict household rules about tobacco consumption, children are less likely to adopt the smoking habit.

“When parents think about tobacco, most picture smoking a cigarette but other tobacco and nicotine products don’t come to mind. E-cigarettes, in particular, resemble a tech device and don’t produce a lasting odor. Any tobacco or nicotine use by children is concerning,” says study co-author Dr. Benjamin Chaffee, associate professor at the University’s School of Dentistry.

The study tracked more than 23,000 teens in the 12- 17 age group in the US and their consumption of cigarettes, e-cigarettes, non-cigarette combustible products (including cigars, pipes, hookahs, and bidis), and smokeless tobacco (including snuff, chewing tobacco, snus, and dissolvable tobacco).

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