Cigarette Use Drops Among Youth and Young Adults

Posted October 23, 2018
By the Annie E. Casey Foundation
Percentage of young people reporting cigarette use in the past month

Ready for some good news? In the last decade, cig­a­rette smok­ing rates have fall­en for both youth and young adults.

The like­li­hood of recent cig­a­rette use among youth between the ages of 12 and 17 fell from 11% in 2005-06 to just 4% in 201516. This same sta­tis­tic also dropped for young adults between the ages of 18 and 25 — from 39% in 2005-06 to 25% in 201516.

Across the coun­try, cig­a­rette smok­ing rates among youth dipped to a low of 3% in 14 states and peaked at 8% in West Vir­ginia. State rates for young adults run from a low of 19% in Cal­i­for­nia and Utah to a high of 36% in Ken­tucky, Ver­mont and West Vir­ginia. Despite the rates mov­ing in the right direc­tion, there’s still room for improvement.

In 201516, 947,000 youth and 8.7 mil­lion young adults across the coun­try report­ed smok­ing a cig­a­rette with­in the last month. Also worth not­ing: The rate of young adults using mar­i­jua­na is on the rise, jump­ing from 16% to 20% in the last decade.

Explore more nation­al and state health data in the KIDS COUNT Data Center

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