A new study has claimed that many parents, who use e-cigarettes, are not aware of the dangers it can cause to the children.
Lead author Jane Garbutt said that these were largely avoidable risks but because e-cigarettes were relatively new, many people are not aware of the dangers or the steps that should be taken to protect children from them.
In the study, 658 parents and guardians at 15 pediatric clinics in the St. Louis area completed surveys about their knowledge and use of e-cigarettes.
Almost all parents knew about e-cigarettes. One in five had tried them, and one in eight said a family member regularly smoked e-cigarettes. In two-third of the homes where children were exposed to e-cigarettes, they also were exposed to regular cigarettes.
The researchers found that 36 percent of the e-cigarette users neither locked up e-liquid bottles nor used childproof caps. Such caps, while required in Europe, are not mandated in the United States.
The study showed that e-liquids were most commonly stored in a drawer or cupboard, a purse or bag or on an open counter.
Garbutt said that the easiest way to lower risk was to store e-liquid out of the reach of children.
He strongly encouraged pediatricians to ask the parents about nicotine use, including e-cigarettes, and added that even skin exposure to e-liquid could harm the children.
The study is published in the Journal Academic Pediatrics.