Across most of the United States, you must be 18 years old to buy a pack of cigarettes. Most states also have laws in place to ban the sale of ecigs to minors. However, the American Medical Association believes that the legal age to buy e-cigarettes needs to be increased to 21. The AMA wants to increase the limits so that ecigs won’t be easily accessible to teens, but how is that going to be helpful when an 18 year old can still go out and buy a pack of regular cigarettes?
It seems that the AMA has things upside down. Why are they targeting ecigs rather than focusing all their efforts on fighting tobacco use? After all, ecigs are tobacco free and in many cases, they are used as a harm reduction strategy by smokers that want to kick the habit.
The AMA is asking the FDA to implement regulations right away. They want to see child-resistant packaging and strict enforcement of a 21 and over vaping age limit. But is there any chance that the FDA will cave to their demands?
“The AMA’s newest policy expands on the AMA’s longtime efforts to help keep all tobacco products, including electronic cigarettes, out of the hands of young people, by urging laws to deter the sale of electronic cigarettes to anyone under the age of 21,” AMA President Dr. Robert Wah said. “We also urge the US Food and Drug Administration to act now to implement its proposed rule to effectively regulate electronic cigarettes.”
Even in his explanation, Dr. Wah included ecigs as tobacco products, but they are actually tobacco-free. Is this an intentional oversight and another scare tactic? Why are respected leaders in the medical community demonizing ecigs when they are helping so many smokers finally end their tobacco habits?