More than a quarter-million youth who had never smoked a cigarette used e-cigarettes in 2013
Study finds youth who have used e-cigarettes are almost twice as likely to intend to smoke conventional cigarettes
More than a quarter of a million youth who had never smoked a cigarette used electronic cigarettes in 2013, according to a CDC study published in the journal Nicotine and Tobacco Research. This number reflects a three-fold increase, from about 79,000 in 2011, to more than 263,000 in 2013.
The data, which comes from the 2011, 2012, and 2013 National Youth Tobacco surveys of middle and high school students, show that youth who had never smoked conventional cigarettes but who used e-cigarettes were almost twice as likely to intend to smoke conventional cigarettes as those who had never used e-cigarettes. Among non-smoking youth who had ever used e-cigarettes, 43.9 percent said they intended to smoke conventional cigarettes within the next year, compared with 21.5 percent of those who had never used e-cigarettes.
“We are very concerned about nicotine use among our youth, regardless of whether it comes from conventional cigarettes, e-cigarettes or other tobacco products. Not only is nicotine highly addictive, it can harm adolescent brain development.” said Tim McAfee, M.D., M.P.H., Director of CDC’s Office on Smoking and Health.
There is evidence that nicotine’s adverse effects on adolescent brain development could result in lasting deficits in cognitive function. Nicotine is highly addictive. About three out of every four teen smokers become adult smokers, even if they intend to quit in a few years.
(More from CDC)