Facts for Parents concerning E-Cigarettes

What Parents Should Know About E-Cigarettes

Electronic cigarettes, or e-cigarettes, are now the most popular form of nicotine used among middle and high school students, with an estimated 3 million students using them. There has been a 10-fold increase in the use of e-cigarettes among high school students between 2011 and 2015 – from 1.5 percent to 16 percent. In fact, more teens use these products today than smoke cigarettes. Still, approximately three-quarters of young adults who report using e-cigarettes also smoke traditional cigarettes, exposing themselves to very high doses of nicotine.

Your teenager may believe e-cigarettes are completely safe and may get defensive when you try to discuss the issue. But there are significant risks to be aware of. To find out more information, visit the center on addiction’s website: www.centeronaddiction.org/e-cigarettes/about-e-cigarettes/what-parents-should-know-about-e-cigarettes.

The National Association on addiction and substance abuse – 2016

E-Cigarette use can lead to traditional tobacco use.

9 out of 10 smokers began smoking before age 21.

What Parents Should Know About the Different Vaping Devices



  • Electronic cigarette
  • Cig-a-likes
  • Minis

Distinguishing Characteristics

  • Physically similar to cigarettes
  • Come in disposable or rechargeable forms
  • May emit a light when the user puffs
  • Shorter battery life than later generations
  • Generally less expensive



  • Vape pens
  • Mid-sized e-hookah

Distinguishing Characteristics

  • Short for “vaporizer pen”
  • Come in various sizes
  • Not shaped like a cigarette
  • Slim like a pen
  • Can come in disposable or rechargeable forms
  • Refillable with e-juice/e-liquid



  • Mechanical Modified Nicotine Delivery Systems (MODs)
  • Vape MODs/personal vaporizer

Distinguishing Characteristics

  • Larger in shape and size
  • Include modification options
  • Have larger battery capacity and replaceable batteries
  • Typically rechargeable
  • Typically deliver more nicotine than earlier generations



  • Electronic hookah

Distinguishing Characteristics

  • Electronic versions of hookah head and hookah bowl

Electronic hookah photo source – https://www.hookah-shisha.com/p-17305-square-e-head.html

You can influence your children’s decision about whether to use e-cigarettes. Even if you have used tobacco yourself, your children will listen if you discuss your struggles with nicotine addiction.

Talk with Your Kids

Use CDC’s Parent Tip Sheet to help you talk with your children. This tip sheet offers facts and practical ways to start conversations with young people about the risks of e-cigarette use.

Download the CDC's Parent's Tip Sheet

More Data about Teens and E-Cigarettes

According to the 2015 Cleveland County Pride Survey,
more students reported using E-cigarettes in the past 30 days
than all other tobacco products combined.

According to the 2015 Cleveland County Pride Survey, the perception of risk among 6th, 9th, and 12th graders associated with e-cigarette, e-cigar, and hookah use was significantly lower than the perception of risk associated with smoking one or more packs of cigarettes a day.

The bottom line -young people think ecigarettes are safer than traditional tobacco products like cigarettes. As parents, we must teach them that this simply isn’t true!