More often young people say they've seen advertisements for e-cigarettes, more often they use e-cigarette cigarettes and cigarettes, according to a study published in ERJ Open Research .
The study was conducted in Germany, where regulations around tobacco advertising and e-cigarettes are more tolerable than in other parts of Europe. Elsewhere there are strict bans on tobacco advertising but some types of advertisements and promotions are allowed for e-cigarettes.
Researchers say that their work provides evidence that children and adolescents should be protected from possible harm to smoking and the use of e-cigarettes through a comprehensive ban on advertisements and promotions.
Dr Julia Hansen, Senior Researcher at the Institute of Therapy and Health Research (IFT-Nord), Kiel, Germany was a joint researcher on the study. He said: "The World Health Organization recommends a comprehensive ban on tobacco advertising, promotion and sponsorship in its Framework Convention on Tobacco Control. However, in Germany tobacco and e-cigarettes can still be advertised in stores, on boards bills and cinemas after 6pm. Otherwise, although tobacco advertising can be banned, the regulations on advertising e-cigarettes are more diverse. We wanted to investigate the impact that advertising might be on young people . "
The researchers asked 6,902 pupils in six German states to complete anonymous questionnaires. They were between 10 and 18 years old, with an average age of 13. They were asked about their way of life, including diet, exercise, smoking and the use of e-cigarettes. They were also asked about their socio-social status and the school's performance.
Pictures of real e-cigarettes advertisements were presented to pupils with brand names that were deleted and asked how often they all saw.
In general, 39% of pupils reported that they had seen the advertisements. Those who said they had seen the advertisements were 2.3 times more likely to say they used e-cigarettes and 40% were more likely to say they smoke tobacco cigarettes. The results also suggest a correlation between seeing more advertisements and using e-cigarettes and smoking tobacco cigarettes more often. Other factors such as age, sensory sensation, the type of school the young people were attending and having a smoked friend were also associated with the likelihood of using e- cigarettes to smygu
Dr Hansen said: "In this big blueberry study, we clearly see a pattern: those who say they've seen e-cigarettes ads are more likely to say their have used conventional cigarettes and cigarettes.
"This type of research can not prove cause and effect, but it suggests that e-cigarettes advertising reach these vulnerable young people. At the same time, we know that e-cigarettes make children-friendly flavors like a gummy bear, bubble and cherry.
"There is evidence that e-cigarettes are not harmless, and this study adds to the existing evidence that seeing e-cigarette advertising and the use of e-cigarettes can also lead young people to smoke. concerns that the use of e-cigarettes could act as cigarette smoking and can contribute to the development of a new generation of cigarette smokers, so youth should be protected from any kind of marketing. "
Dr Hansen hopes to continue studying this large group of schoolchildren to see if there are any changes over time. He says this could help explain the case and the effect between being exposed to advertisements, using e-cigarettes and smoking.
Professor Charlotta Pisinger is Chair of the European Breathing Society Tobacco Control Committee and was not part of the research. He said: "E-cigarette producers can argue that advertising is a legitimate way to inform adult consumers about their products, however, this study suggests that children and young people may be subject to collateral damage & # 39; as a result of regulating lax e – advertise cigarettes. Policy makers need to realize that advertising is young people and this could not only promote the use of e-cigarettes, but also the likelihood of smoking and the health problems that bring them. "
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