Report says more than 6 million US teenagers used tobacco products in 2019,


More than 6 million middle and high school students were currently using tobacco product in 2019, according to National Youth Tobacco Survey data released by the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

The survey found that 1 in 3 high school students and around 1 in 8 middle school students are current tobacco users, meaning they had used the product at least once in the 30 days.
For the sixth year in a row, e-cigarettes were the most commonly used tobacco product among high school and middle school students. More than 55% of students reported using e-cigarettes only. Other tobacco products used by students included cigars, cigarettes, smokeless tobacco, hookahs and pipe tobacco.
More than 53% of high school students and more than 23% of middle school students reported ever trying a tobacco product.
“Our Nation’s youth are becoming increasingly exposed to nicotine, a drug that is highly addictive and can harm brain development,” CDC Director Dr. Robert R. Redfield said in a statement. “Youth use of any tobacco product, including e-cigarettes, is unsafe.”
Among youth, symptoms of nicotine dependence increase in those who use a combination of products, compared to those who only use one.
In 2019, more than half of current tobacco product users were reportedly thinking about quitting all tobacco products. Increasing successful quit attempts “could complement prevention efforts to reduce tobacco product use among youths,” the report said.
Young people who use flavored tobacco at first are more likely to kee using tobacco later, study says.
More than half of the students who reported trying e-cigarettes said they did so because they were curious. Witnessing their family or friends try e-cigarettes and interest in flavors were other reasons.
Among current tobacco product users, flavored tobacco use was 72.8% among high schoolers and 59.6% among middle schoolers.
Though current use of flavored tobacco products was slightly higher in males, females were slightly more susceptible to general e-cigarette use, the report found.
Given the increases in youth tobacco use, the report says that “comprehensive, sustained, evidence-based tobacco control strategies, combined with FDA regulation of tobacco products, are important for preventing and reducing youth tobacco product use.”
“We are fully committed to preventing children from using harmful tobacco products, including e-cigarettes, and will continue to develop policies that will achieve that objective as soon as possible,” acting FDA Commissioner Dr.  Brett Giroir, HHS assistant secretary for health, said in a statement about the new report.


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