Amongst the main factors encouraging teens to vape, the researchers found were the belief that they are less harmful than cigarettes, they can be easily concealed, that they’re easy to purchase, and the availability of different flavours.
Additionally, said the researchers, teens who have a higher weekly allowance, do not live with family, and are exposed to second-hand smoke at home, were also more likely to vape more frequently.
Increased vaping rates in Canada
Meanwhile, recent research looking at vaping behaviour amongst Canadian teens, has found that between 2017 and 2019 the rates amongst adolescents aged between 16 and 19 have doubled, and the higher nicotine content available in North America as opposed to Europe may be to blame.
Within the EU, the Tobacco Products Directive (TPD) which came into effect in May 2017, bans the sales of nicotine containing e-liquids above 20 mg/ml. Public health experts have long argued that setting nicotine caps on safer alternatives such as vaping products would have a detrimental effect on national smoking rates, pushing former smokers who had switched to go back to smoking.
However on the flipside, the regulation may be having a positive effect on teen vaping rates, ensuring that teens do not become addicted to nicotine. A survey of more than 12,000 Canadians aged 16 to 19, conducted between 2017 and 2019, found that the number participants reporting previous month use had more than doubled, from 8.4% in 2017 to 17.8% in 2019.