E-cigarette use was originally meant to help kick the traditional habit, but now it is becoming a growing trend among young adults and raising concern from local health officials.

According to the CDC, e-cigarette use has grown an astounding 900 percent among high school students from 2011 to 2015.

With more products and varieties of the new smoking device, along with the perception of it being a better alternative, health officials said it’s appealing to young adults and raising concern for potential health effects.

“I think the perception is that it’s no more harmful than a stick of gum, it’s fun, it’s flavorful it’s just what you do when actually there’s a lot more to it than that, it has the addictive chemical nicotine in it,” said Melissa Jackson from L.E. Phillips- Libertas Treatment Center. 

“There are still a lot of unknowns about it, long-term effects and there are certain chemicals in there that are known to be hazardous, so I think that it’s not necessarily a better option, it’s just a lesser of two evils,” said HSHS St. Joseph’s Hospital respiratory therapist, Erin Fredrick.

When discussing with children the dangers of smoking, drugs and addictive substances, health officials recommend including e-cigarettes in the conversation.