Tobacco 21 Will Help San Antonians Breathe Easier

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Courtesy / Tobacco 21 Campaign

Tobacco 21 advocates for raising the age to legally purchase tobacco 18 to 21.

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As an allergy, asthma, and immunology specialist, I see patients who are dealing with the negative effects of tobacco exposure on a daily basis. I’ve experienced firsthand how this impacts their quality of life, which is why I am a strong supporter of raising the age for legally purchasing tobacco from 18 to 21.

In my field, it is common knowledge that tobacco exposure is one of the top triggers for uncontrolled asthma, leading to higher rates of disease and death. Recently, I’ve seen a spike in tobacco exposure among adolescents through e-cigarettes. Most e-cigarette users are under the misconception that vaping is safer than smoking, but that is not the case. The chemicals in e-cigarettes cause similar damage to the lungs as those contained in traditional cigarettes.

This is even more worrisome because e-cigarettes are a relatively new phenomenon; we have yet to determine the full scope of long-term use effects on the body.

Some of my first experiences seeing the effects of tobacco use on the body came during my timing serving in the Air Force. I was part of the team that would perform health screening for basic trainees, assessing their respiratory and asthma status. The detrimental effects tobacco use had on our airmen’s health and fitness were obvious, which is why smoking is prohibited during basic training. The military is actively working to decrease tobacco use among our active-duty military in order to prevent deploying soldiers to areas where their lung status would decrease the chances of them coming back home safely to their families.

I support Tobacco 21 because increasing the legal age for purchasing tobacco products will decrease the number of young adults exposed to their negative consequences and help all San Antonians breathe a little easier.

5 thoughts on “Tobacco 21 Will Help San Antonians Breathe Easier

  1. “Most e-cigarette users are under the misconception that vaping is safer than smoking, but that is not the case. The chemicals in e-cigarettes cause similar damage to the lungs as those contained in traditional cigarettes.”

    Could the author expand on this conclusion she provided? Does that conclusion depend on the oil being vaped? Are there studies supporting that conclusion? The author’s conclusion may be true, but some supporting data would be helpful to the reader.

  2. “The military is actively working to decrease tobacco use among our active-duty military in order to prevent deploying soldiers to areas where their lung status would decrease the chances of them coming back home safely to their families.” The good doctor packs a lot of information into a single sentence, but what is she talking about? The days of “smoke ’em if you got ’em” are well behind us, but this run on sentence leaves me shaking my head. What’s up, doc?

  3. Best speaker at CC today was “for the record” Jack M Finger. Loved his commentary and analogy of the under aged smoker and the controversial passage of giving under aged teens free condoms and promoting abortion. Gotta watch it!!

  4. “Tobacco will help San Antonians breathe easier”, really? on which side of the street, Alamo Hts or across the street on Broadway in SA City limit?, Bandera at Huebner, Leon Valley side, or San Antonio City side??? And which convenience store will be the biggest criminal if they sell to underage persons, Leon Valley store, Alamo Hts store, or City of San Antonio store?? Now, which under age purchaser will be penalized – neither!!! Get a grip SA (should be a new slogan for the city!!) So utterly delusional!

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