On World No Tobacco Day, observed on May 31 every year, doctors here warned against the harmful effects of electronic cigarettes or Electronic Nicotine Delivery Systems, a new trend among youth.
“It is very much harmful and its use should be stopped. e-cigarette doesn’t have smoke, but it carries nicotine and hits the nervous system directly,” said D Bahera, Professor at the department of pulmonary medicine at Postgraduate Institute of Medical Education and Research.
“Children and youth are attracted to e-cigarette because these have been glamorised by tobacco industry and easily available on all e-commerce sites in thousands of flavours,” said Dr Rakesh Gupta, Deputy Director at Punjab health department.
The Chandigarh administration has already banned the use of nicotine in hukkah bars.
On Wednesday, several societies across the world warned that over the past decade, electronic cigarettes have rapidly risen in popularity among young people in many countries. “More than 450,000 American middle school students used e-cigarettes in 2016, four times the number of reported users the previous year. e-cigarette use in youth is associated with higher smoking prevalence at a younger age and heavier tobacco use,” said a report by Asian Pacific Society of Respirology.
“Electronic cigarettes have been claimed to be safer than combustible cigarettes, but comparison to the most lethal product in the history of the world is faulty. All health and safety claims regarding electronic cigarettes relative to combustible tobacco in advertising and media should cease,” the APSR report said.
According to the doctors, tobacco is the leading underlying single cause of death worldwide. As per the statistics, in 2016, tobacco use caused over 7.1 million deaths, mostly related to lung and heart disease, cancer, and stroke.