E-Cigarette Use Prevalence Increased in Younger Adults From 2019 to 2021

e-cigarette teenager
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Increase in prevalence mainly due to increase among never smokers, who accounted for 53% of younger adult e-cigarette users in 2021.

HealthDay News — For younger adults, the prevalence of electronic cigarette (e-cigarette) use increased from 2019 to 2021, especially among those who never smoked cigarettes, according to a study published online April 18 in the American Journal of Preventive Medicine.

Priti Bandi, PhD, from the American Cancer Society in Atlanta, and colleagues estimated current e-cigarette use prevalence using data from cross-sectional, nationally representative National Health Interview Surveys in 2019, 2020, and 2021 by age group (younger, 18 to 29 years; middle age, 30 to 44 and 45 to 59 years; and older, 60 years and older) and by cigarette smoking status.

The researchers found that between 2019 and 2021, there was an increase in the prevalence of e-cigarette use among younger adults (8.8 to 10.2%; adjusted prevalence difference, 1.7%), mainly due to an increase among never smokers (4.9 to 6.4%; adjusted prevalence difference, 1.7%). Of the younger adults who used e-cigarettes in 2021, people who never smoked cigarettes constituted 53%. The prevalence was similar in 2019 and 2021 among middle-age and older adults, regardless of cigarette smoking status; the largest proportion of people who used e-cigarettes in 2021 was made up of those who formerly smoked cigarettes (51.8, 51.6, and 47.5% among those aged 30 to 44, 45 to 59, and 60 years and older, respectively).

“We must address the rise in e-cigarette use among younger adults who never smoked cigarettes and, at the same time, help those who may have switched from cigarettes to e-cigarettes to stop using these devices completely,” Bandi said in a statement.

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