The following is excerpted from an online article posted by HealthDay.
Despite continued efforts by health advocates and U.S. public health officials, a huge number of middle and high school students are still using addictive tobacco products, most often vaping products.
A new study released by two federal agencies estimated a total of 3.08 million U.S. middle and high school students using some form of tobacco product within the previous 30 days in 2022.
“Commercial tobacco product use continues to threaten the health of our nation’s youth, and disparities in youth tobacco product use persist,” said Deirdre Lawrence Kittner, who directs the Office on Smoking and Health at the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.
In total, just over 11% of all students in middle and high school now vape or use cigars, cigarettes, or some form of tobacco product, according to the new report issued jointly by the CDC and the U.S. Food and Drug Administration.
Rates were higher at the high school level, with 16.5% of kids in that age group using a tobacco product. About 4.5% of middle school students used tobacco products.
By far, the most commonly used tobacco product among all students was electronic cigarettes for the ninth consecutive year, the researchers said. Vape products were used by 2.55 million students. Next in popularity were cigars, which 500,000 students had used, and cigarettes, which were smoked by 440,000 teens. Another 330,000 kids used smokeless tobacco, the analysis found.
The study was based on data from the 2022 National Youth Tobacco Survey. This survey of students in grades nine through 12 was administered between Jan. 18 and May 31, 2022. The researchers behind the new study said the results can’t be compared to previous years because survey methods have recently changed.
Both the FDA and CDC called on parents, educators, and health care providers to help in efforts to prevent youth tobacco use.
The study findings were published in the Nov. 11 issue of the CDC’s Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Report.