Trends in smoking behaviors among us adolescent cigarette smokers

Sunday Azagba, Lauren Manzione, Lingpeng Shan, Jessica King

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

26 Scopus citations


INTRODUCTION: Identifying trends in smoking behaviors among youth cigarette smokers could inform youth policy and interventions. METHODS: Using 2011-2018 National Youth Tobacco Survey data, logistic/linear regressions were used to analyze trends in smoking frequency, intensity, age of first cigarette use, and electronic cigarette (e-cigarette) use frequency among current smokers. Stratified analyses were conducted among male, female, middle school, and high school students and race and ethnicity subgroups separately. RESULTS: From 2011 to 2018, there was a decrease in smoking ≥10 days (50.0% to 38.3%), ≥20 days (37.2% to 26.3%), and 30 days (26.6% to 18.2%) among current smokers. Smoking prevalence decreased among male, female, high school, non-Hispanic white, and non-Hispanic other students. Overall, light smoking (≤5 cigarettes per day [CPDs]) increased (76.6% to 82.7%), and moderate smoking (6-10 CPDs) decreased (10.7% to 8.3%). Trends in light, moderate, and heavy smoking varied by demographic groups. Age at first cigarette use increased among female (12.28 to 13.29), high school (12.91 to 13.18), and non-Hispanic other students (11.64 to 12.83) and decreased among male students (12.90 to 12.57). From 2014 to 2018, there was an increase in e-cigarette use frequency for ≥10 days (20.8% to 40.9%), ≥20 days (13.5% to 31.7%), and all 30 days (9.3% to 22%). CONCLUSIONS: From 2011 to 2018, current youth cigarette smokers smoked fewer days and fewer CPDs, and age of first cigarette use increased. However, over time, male youth smoked more heavily and started smoking earlier. E-cigarette use increased from 2014 to 2018. Differences by demographic characteristics can inform future research and interventions.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article numbere20193047
Issue number3
StatePublished - Mar 1 2020

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Pediatrics, Perinatology, and Child Health


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