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E-Cigarette ‘Mods’ Are 6X More Powerful At Hooking Young Smokers


While research has shown that vaping in teenaged years is tied to smoking later in life, a new study found that depending on which vaping devices a teen uses—vaping pens vs. modified e-cigarette devices—the young person may wind up smoking far more.

The study, “E-Cigarette Product Characteristics and Subsequent Frequency of Cigarette Smoking,” in the May 2020 Pediatrics, found that participants using a pen-like e-cigarette device smoked 2.83 times as many cigarettes as those who had never used e-cigarettes, and participants using a modifiable e-cigarette device (often called “mod” devices) smoked 8.38 times as many cigarettes.

Researchers for the study examined data from 1,312 participants in the Southern California Children’s Health Study in 2015-2016 (~18 years of age) and followed up with these participants a year later. Those who vaped were more likely to smoke after the year, and the amount they smoked depended on the e-cigarette device they used.

Mods have components that can be modified, such as the battery, temperature, and power, that change the relative amount of nicotine delivery and size of the vape cloud, while vape pens generally deliver a consistent, and often lower, level of nicotine.

Researchers concluded that young adults using modifiable (vs. pen-like) e-cigarette devices smoked more than six times as many cigarettes a year later and recommended that targeted regulation of these mod e-cigarettes could help reduce more heavy smoking patterns.

Source: AAP


  1. Juul is NOT a “mod”. Juul would fall under the category of “cigalike” or “pen-style”. A large majority of teens who vape, smoked before they ever vaped. They use vaping as a way to not smoke (just like adults). There is zero evidence that vaping is a “gateway to smoking”. Combustible tobacco use in teens is at a 20 plus year low. Teen vaping has surpassed teen smoking. It’s obvious this happened because they have switched nicotine delivery system choice.

    I’m not defending teen vaping. The science is there. Nicotine isn’t good for a few developing human. Teens shouldn’t vape. That being said, a 16-18 vaping is causing far less harm to their body than smoking combustible tobacco.

    • Edgar Perret-Gentil

      How did this “research” come about when juuling is no more than 5 years old. Juul and nic Salts is what got kids hooked. open systems is not appealing to kids since it can not be easily hidden or stashed away. Now, 50 yrs of cigarette research and millions of people dead has only given tobacco companies open doors to government and their officials thru their slush fund called Master Settlement Agreement. To which 1 or 2 percent actually go to tobacco and cigarette awareness. I quit smoking cigarettes about 3 yrs ago and I vape 3 MG nicotine flavored free base eliquid vg pg only. NO Vitamin E acetate, solvents oil or any other fda approved food additive nor illegal THC cartridges. My lungs passed a stress test with flying colors, my blood pressure is stable, and my anxiety is controlled.Do you want to do your own research and talk to adult vapers that have actually quit smoking quit drugs and alcohol because they can channel their anxiety thru vaping? Contact me

  2. The survey showed that, as teens find it harder to get their vapes, the small % that vape regularly, almost all of whom went to vapes from smoking, are returning to cigarettes. This finding validates the other peer-reviewed studies showing conclusively that increased barriers to nicotine vapes produces a higher number of cigarettes sold in that state/local jurisdiction.

    • Sharrilyn Helgertz

      Did you read the study? It says nothing like that at all. The study showed that teens who vape smoke more cigarettes than teens who don’t vape, and teens who vape using mods (e.g., JUUL) smoke the highest number of cigarettes. It says nothing about what happens when teens have a harder time getting access to vaping products.

      • Yes I read the study, they didn’t include that because it doesn’t fit the narrative. As Vapers we know how it works, it is rare a person who started with a vaporizer that has a pleasant flavor would ever switch to cigarettes but if you smoked before you vaped, you may always have the desire to go back for instance my stepson..many years ago he was 14 came back from his mother house over the summer a smoker. Being a Vaper I got him vaping, he vaped until it became impossible for him to keep himself supplied due to the laws then he went back to cigarettes. His friend could only get cigarettes, always wanted to quit and as soon as he turned 21 he bought his first vape and has vaped for years. Study makes no sense to experienced vapers…there’s something missing.

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