Young people’s use of e-cigarettes across the united kingdom: Findings from five surveys 2015–2017

Linda Bauld*, Anne Marie Mackintosh, Brian Eastwood, Allison Ford, Graham Moore, Martin Dockrell, Deborah Arnott, Hazel Cheeseman, Ann McNeill

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

71 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

Concern has been expressed about the use of e-cigarettes among young people. Our study reported e-cigarette and tobacco cigarette ever and regular use among 11–16 year olds across the UK. Data came from five large scale surveys with different designs and sampling strategies conducted between 2015 and 2017: The Youth Tobacco Policy Survey; the Schools Health Research Network Wales survey; two Action on Smoking and Health (ASH) Smokefree Great Britain-Youth Surveys; and the Scottish Schools Adolescent Lifestyle and Substance Use Survey. Cumulatively these surveys collected data from over 60,000 young people. For 2015/16 data for 11–16 year olds: ever smoking ranged from 11% to 20%; regular (at least weekly) smoking between 1% and 4%; ever use of e-cigarettes 7% to 18%; regular (at least weekly) use 1% to 3%; among never smokers, ever e-cigarette use ranged from 4% to 10% with regular use between 0.1% and 0.5%; among regular smokers, ever e-cigarette use ranged from 67% to 92% and regular use 7% to 38%. ASH surveys showed a rise in the prevalence of ever use of e-cigarettes from 7% (2016) to 11% (2017) but prevalence of regular use did not change remaining at 1%. In summary, surveys across the UK show a consistent pattern: most e-cigarette experimentation does not turn into regular use, and levels of regular use in young people who have never smoked remain very low.

Original languageEnglish
Article number973
JournalInternational Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health
Volume14
Issue number9
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Sep 2017

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
Acknowledgments: The YTPS was supported by a grant from Cancer Research UK (A20456). The ASH Smokefree GB-Youth surveys were supported by grants from Cancer Research UK and the British Heart Foundation. The School Health Research Network is a partnership between the Centre for the Development and Evaluation of Complex Interventions for Public Health Improvement (DECIPHer) at Cardiff University, Welsh Government, Public Health Wales and Cancer Research UK, funded by Health and Care Research Wales via the National Centre for Population Health and Well-being Research.

Publisher Copyright:
© 2017 by the authors.

Keywords

  • E-cigarettes
  • Prevalence
  • Smoking
  • Surveys
  • Tobacco
  • Youth

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