CDC Finds Youth Tobacco Use Declined in 2020, Remains at 4.5 Million Users
Yesterday, the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), in collaboration with the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA), released a report finding that current tobacco product use declined among U.S. middle and high school students from 2019 to 2020, largely driven by decreases in e-cigarette, cigar, and smokeless tobacco use. However, the National Youth Tobacco Survey (NYTS) data analysis also found that about one in six (nearly 4.5 million) students were current users of some type of tobacco product in 2020.
The study, published in the Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Report, assessed current (past 30-day) use of tobacco products including e-cigarettes, cigars, smokeless tobacco, hookah, pipe tobacco, and heated tobacco products. The study found that nearly one in four high school students (3.65 million) were current users of any tobacco product in 2020, down about 25 percent from about one in three (4.7 million) in 2019. About one in 15 middle school students (800,000) were current users of any tobacco product in 2020, down nearly 50 percent from about one in eight (1.5 million in 2019).
From 2019 to 2020, decreases among both middle and high school students also occurred in use of any combustible tobacco product, the use of two or more tobacco products, e-cigarettes, cigars, and smokeless tobacco. For the seventh year in a row, e-cigarettes were the most commonly used tobacco product among both middle and high school students. Many youths use multiple tobacco products; among current tobacco product users, about one in three high school students (1.27 million) and about two in five middle schools students (340,000) used two ore more tobacco products in 2020.