American Heart Association challenges e-cigarette sales to youths

Kirsten Glavin

POSTED: Monday, August 25, 2014 - 6:36pm

UPDATED: Monday, August 25, 2014 - 6:50pm

The American Heart Association is cracking down on electronic cigarette sales. They argue that since many e-cigarettes contain nicotine, sellers should follow the same laws that apply to cigarettes and cigars. Nicotine is known to be addictive in larger doses.

"If you look at what nicotine does, again, it goes into the vessels, its inhaled, its rapidly absorbed more than any iv, or any pill. it's rapidly absorbed and there's a sensation of breathlessness. and for some people with addictive personalities, that's seen as a small high and they want to continue that," said Doctor David Brickey, a pulmonary physician at Trinity Mother Francis.

Although many doctors currently recommend the substitute to smokers looking to quit, many believe it can be used as a gateway to younger generations.

"We should not allow that to start early, the minimal age would be 18. To start that early would be considered, I think we can use the phrase gateway to maybe something like a cigarette in the right setting, or maybe other things," Brickey said.

Some local shops such as Uptown Vapor Lounge in Tyler, have taken responsibility into their own hands. They say it can be a great alternative for adults trying to quit, but that they do not promote its use to younger people.

"We don't sell to anybody under the age of 18, as it clearly states on our door, everybody's ID is checked. That's not a law yet, but its something that we feel shouldn't be in the hands of adolescents," said Houston Conant, manager of Uptown Vapor Lounge.   

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