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AAP News: Flashy, New Tobacco Device Can Lead Teens to Become Lifelong Smokers

“No matter what form nicotine takes, it always connects people back to cigarettes, said Brian Jenssen, M.D., FAAP, an expert on tobacco and children’s health. ‘Safer doesn’t mean safe. Cigarettes are the only legal product on the market that will kill you if used as intended,’ he said. The IQOS heat-not­-burn device uses a disposable tobacco unit called a heat stick that the smoker inserts into an electronic holder. Each heat stick contains about the same amount of nicotine as one cigarette. An electronic heat element warms the stick and releases an aerosol that the user inhales. The aerosol contains nicotine, chemicals, additives and flavorings. Like a cigarette, it gives off secondhand aerosol that is unsafe to breathe, Dr. Jenssen said. Companies that make products like e-cigarettes, vape pens and JUUL claim they can help smokers quit. But evidence suggests they lead to cigarette use and are a way for the tobacco industry to attract new customers, he said. ‘These are still tobacco companies that have a 50-year history of manipulation, trying to rebrand themselves to frame themselves as part of the solution. They’re still part of the problem,’ Dr. Jenssen said.” Read more on AAP News.