Current use of e-cigarettes by middle and high school students tripled from 2013 to 2014, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and the U.S. Food and Drug Administration’s Center for Tobacco Products. The findings were gathered by the 2014 National Youth Tobacco Survey and published in the CDC’s Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Report. Results from the survey indicate that current e-cigarette use—defined as use on a least one day in the past 30 days—among high school students increased to 13.4 percent 2014 from 4.5 percent in 2013. This marks an increase to 2 million students using e-cigarettes in 2014 from approximately 660,000 students using the devices just one year prior.
Current e-cigarette use among middle school students increased to 3.9 percent in 2014 from 1.1 percent in 2013, an increase to approximately 450,000 students from 120,000 students. The 2014 survey results mark the first time that current e-cigarette use has surpassed the use of other tobacco products overall—including combustible cigarettes—since the National Youth Tobacco Survey began collecting data on e-cigarette use in 2011.
Current hookah use among high school students nearly doubled during this same time period, increasing to 9.4 percent in 2014 from 5.2 percent in 2013—an increase from approximately 770,000 students to approximately 1.3 million students. Meanwhile, current hookah use increased among middle school students to 2.5 percent in 2014 (280,000 students) from 1.1 percent (120,000 students) in 2013.
No decline in the overall use of tobacco products was seen between 2011 in 2014. According to survey results, the overall rates of tobacco product use in 2014 were 7.7 percent for middle school students and 24.6 percent for high school students. The products most commonly used by high school students in 2014 were e-cigarettes, at 13.4 percent; hookah, at 9.4 percent; combustible cigarettes, at 9.2 percent; cigars, at 8.2 percent; smokeless tobacco, at 5.5 percent; snus, at 1.9 percent; and pipes, at 1.5 percent. The products most commonly used in 2014 by middle school students were e-cigarettes, at 3.9 percent; hookah, at 2.5 percent; cigarettes, at 2.5 percent; cigars, at 1.9 percent; smokeless tobacco, 1.6 percent; and pipes, at 0.6 percent. The use of multiple tobacco products was common, with nearly half of all middle and high school students who were classified as current tobacco users using two or more types of tobacco products.