New Survey Shows Minnesota Youth Tobacco use RIsing for the First Time in 17 Years

A new survey shows that for the first time since 2000, overall youth tobacco use has increased in Minnesota with 26.4 percent of high school students using some form of tobacco or nicotine, up from 24.6 percent in 2014.

The rapid uptake of e-cigarettes and other vaping devices has quickly reversed a longterm trend of declining teen tobacco use in Minnesota, according to new results from the Minnesota Youth Tobacco Survey. The new data show 1 in 5 high school students use ecigarettes, a nearly 50 percent increase since the data were last collected in 2014. At the same time, youth cigarette smoking has reached an alltime low. Less than 10 percent of high school students now smoke cigarettes – a 70 percent drop since 2000.

“E-cigarettes and similar devices threaten to reverse our success in preventing youth from using tobacco products,” said Minnesota Health Commissioner Jan Malcolm. “Just as we successfully reduced cigarette use to under 10 percent of high school students, giving us the hope that a smoke-free generation was within reach, the industry responded with new products designed to get youth addicted to nicotine.”

As e-cigarettes attract more youth into tobacco use, they create a disturbing cycle of addiction and harm to adolescents. One-fifth of Minnesota youth using e-cigarettes have never smoked or used conventional tobacco such as cigarettes or chew.’

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