Will You Allow Your Teenage Kids to Use E-cigs?
Just so we're clear, we are not discussing little children here. Obviously, the idea of innocent six or seven-year-old kids playing with devices associated with nicotine or any other stuff that may someday lead them to experiment with harmful counterparts is just plain troubling.
What's more common, though, is the countless studies proposing that the number of teenage kids below legal age experimenting with narcotics is increasing. And because more people are yet to learn about the difference between traditional smoking and vaping, many associate tobacco with e-cigarettes. And some even look at both practices with the same amount of disdain. Many parents instinctively say no when asked whether they'd allow their kids to vape, almost as instinctively as they would when asked about traditional tobacco.
The primary reason most parents restrict their underage kids from puffing tobacco is because of the health risks it poses. When they're old enough, we say, they'd be wiser to choose whether the risks attached with smoking are something they can handle. But now that they're young and impulsive and probably think they're invincible. That we have the legal right to say "no" on their behalf. The law says "no" on their behalf by not allowing sales of tobacco to minors. Unlike traditional tobacco, e-cigarettes can be acquired by anybody of any age as there are currently no laws against selling to minors. Should we be worried?
As well-informed citizens, we know the e-cigarette is a completely different thing. This technology does not pose the same health and safety risks that concern us about tobacco. In fact, e-cigarettes are known to be the healthier alternative to smoking. Primarily because of the absence of carcinogens, chemicals and toxins that are known to be present in the traditional tobaccos. We have to accept, that these devices can help minors who are already addicted to tobacco quit while it's still early. Also, it is a known fact that not all e-cigarettes contain nicotine and if they do, the levels can be adjusted.
Taking these facts into consideration, parents should be able to decide which route to go. It's easy to implement a rule when there are legal rules backing you up, as is the case with traditional cigarettes.
But since there are no laws about electronic cigarette usage in minors yet, it's up to what the parents to guide their kids and inform them about the pros, as well as the cons. Whether your kid is vaping or smoking tobacco or getting drunk in a bar behind your back. At the end of the day good parenting is still the key.