WOODBURY - They're billed as a way to help smokers kick butts, but a new study says e-cigarettes may actually push teens to smoke regular tobacco.

According to a University of Southern California study, 31 percent of high school students who tried electronic cigarettes also tried traditional cigarettes.

Researchers say they surveyed more than 2,500 teens and found that those who smoked e-cigarettes were more likely to experiment with other tobacco products.

Suffolk County Legislator Dr. William Spencer says that e-cigarettes are dangerous and addictive despite the perception that they're a less harmful alternative.

According to the Centers For Disease Control and Prevention, e-cigarette use by middle and high school students more than tripled from 2013 to 2014, while traditional cigarette use over that same period declined.