Vaping's popularity with American teenagers is rising, highlighted by alarming national statistics released by researchers this week, and an unusual "epidemic" on Tuesday by US Surgeon General.
The news has prompted Alabama paediatricians, researchers, and other medical experts Experts should also raise alerts about vaping teenagers and offer ideas to stem growth.
"It's not entirely surprising for those of us who have contact with people in this age group," said Professor Steven Rowe and director of the Cystic Fibrosis Research Center at the University of Alabama in Birmingham. "But it's still shocking about the level of addiction and the prevalence of use."
Curtis Turner, a professor of pediatrics at the University of South Alabama and a pediatrician at USA Health: "What we're worried about when you try e-cigarettes for whatever reason is that they're nicotine-rich and very addictive. They will be addicted to life. "
Alabama lawmakers are also focusing their attention on the issue prior to their spring meeting in 201
"I would not be surprised if we saw laws that regulate under-age vaping," said Senator Cam Ward, R-Alabaster, chairman of Judiciary Committee of the Senate.
The topic has come to the fore in recent weeks in the media following the recent report on teenage vaping sponsored by the National Drug Abuse Institute of the Federal Government and was done by the University of Michigan.
The report provided amazing statistics: Never before had researchers in the 44-year history of the study seen such a-year-old spike in experimenting with a teenager using a chemical stimulant or a drug. Twenty-one percent of high school graduates said they inhaled nicotine in the last 30 days, compared with 11% in the previous year.
The study prompted Adams to issue an official warning, only his second in his 16-month month term. The first, in April, called on people to take naloxone in response to opioid overdoses.
Dr. Susan Walley, a professor of pediatrics at the University of Alabama, Birmingham, who chairs the tobacco control efforts of the American Academy of Pediatrics, is also disturbed by the data.
A 2016 Center for Disease Control and Prevention Report Based on an analysis a year ago
47.5 percent of students who use a nicotine product and 27.4 percent of middle school students.
The analysis was carried out before Juul launched electronic cigarettes. The slim devices, which are designed as USB flash drives, are cassettes that contain oils that generate steam when heated. Each Juul capsule contains as much nicotine as a pack of cigarettes, according to the public health department in Alabama.
"I think it's fair to say these numbers are lagging behind," Walley said. "The statistics of Alabama students who use e-cigarettes may be much higher, but we do not know yet."
Juul devices are popular among teenagers. According to one study, adolescents are 16 times more likely to be Juul than older age groups. Other e-cigarette devices are generally used by adults to recover from cigarette addiction.
Auburn University study, released in the spring, contains preliminary data that estimates close to 24 percent of university students. Cigarettes / Juul at least once a day.
Linda Gibson-Young, associate professor at Auburn's School of Nursing, said the release of the study and the warning of the General Surgeon would help to further examine the issue of publicity.
"Parents need to be aware of what their children are doing," said Gibson-Young. It's hard to keep up, but to be aware of what a Juul is or what an e-cigarette looks like and how children use it to make the public aware of who they are and what they look like . "
Cool Juul  Juul devices are the most talked about e-cigarettes because they can be discreetly hidden.
San Francisco-based company Juul has defended its products in recent days Company claims to take action to prevent teens from being used by teens, and has agreed to stop distributing some flavorings to retail stores, and is taking steps to prevent young people from buying appliances online.
But the "cool" factor of Juul lets the researchers ask whether the new generation is the Marlboro Man or Joe Camel.
because they find their own identities, "said Gibson-Young. "If it appears as an in-thing, they will most likely see and follow the trends."
Dr. Alan Blum, director of the Center for the Study of Tobacco Consumption and Society at the School of Medicine at the University of Alabama, said, "It's almost as if we have learned nothing from smoking."
How to Beat the Rise of e-cigarettes among teenagers? Lampoonery, Blum said, could be a possibility.
"Looking at kids sucking on USB drives is funny enough to come up with all sorts of satire and ridicule instead of jumping up and down and saying, 'Oh, you're going to get addicted', he said.
Blum said, "The surefire way to make everyone try is to tell everyone how dangerous it is. "
Rowe, director of the Cystic Fibrosis Research Center at UAB, said," I think we're lagging behind or getting hit with flat feet. "
He said the UAB researchers had collected enough data to show that it will have a damaging effect on how a vaper's lungs can protect themselves from infection.
"It's only a matter of time before you begin to accumulate all sorts of side effects," Rowe said. "There is a marketing about the coolness and the misconception that it is a completely healthy alternative to smoking. That's not the case. "
Blum and others are skeptical that much is being done in Alabama to regulate the industry.
Alabama is one of a dozen states that have not established a ban on public tobacco smoking. All these states except Wyoming are in the south.
There is no tax on e-cigarettes in Alabama. According to the CDC, the state had the lowest average monthly retail price for e-liquids in the US at $ 5.32.
Legislators considered in 2015 a tax of $ 0.25 per milliliter on liquid products to Governor Robert Bentley as a way to generate revenue to offset a budget deficit. The tax could not break the law and has not reappeared since then.
Eight states and the District of Columbia have an excise tax on electronic liquids, including Louisiana and North Carolina. Alex Clark, CEO of Consumers for Smokeless Alternative Association, said Alabama was a "tax-hostile state," assuming that the problem would only materialize if budget deficits had to be addressed. He said the taxes approved in the southern states are "not so bad" compared to other states and places like Chicago, where a tax per unit of $ 0.80 is tied to a $ 0.55 milliliter rate.
Blum: "Every single lawmaker considers Juul to be another taxable source of income through sin taxes and taking more revenue into households."
Legislators in Alabama might consider raising the age of smoking from 19 to 21 If the legislature advocates age, then this is the case With six other states – not one from the south – the age of tobacco would be raised to 21 years.
Another 350 places, but none in Alabama, have approved regulations to increase the age of smokers Only a place in the deep south, in the non-constitutional areas of Adams County, Mississippi – home of Natchez – has increased the age of smoking.
US Rep. Chris Pringle, R-Mobile, had sponsored legislation last year In order to join Alabama Tabak21 movement, the move went nowhere.
Pringle said he intends to pass the bill in this legislative session reintroduce, and the vaping will be included.
Angi Stalnaker, a lobbyist from Montgomery representing the Breathe Easier Alliance About 200 e-cigarette stores in the state – the organization "feels confident" that 19 is a decent age.
"We do not think the problem is the law," said Stalnaker. "It is the enforcement of the law."
She added: "In Alabama, it is illegal to buy steam paint products or electronic cigarettes if you are under the age of 19. It is illegal for anyone over the age of 19 to buy someone underage and guide The members of the Breathe Easier Alliance of Alabama strongly condemn anyone who would sell to minors or make purchases. "
She said if children under 19 years are" punished "for vaping," I would see that use rapidly decreasing among teenagers. "
Hoss Mack, the sheriff of Baldwin County, said the concern, as he sees it for prosecution, is that the public generally does not know the problem.
Mack told this school resource conservationists have told him that steaming in schools would become a "real problem" because the devices are hidden.
"When you're in a ball game and you see a kid drinking a beer, you think, 'that's not the case, right,' said Mack. "But if you see a child steaming out there, they may not necessarily think it's right, but they do not know it's restricted."
He added, "I do not think we necessarily need more laws, but I think we need a pedagogical thing, I think this situation has turned out to be something to be addressed."