rss
BMJ Open 5:e007072 doi:10.1136/bmjopen-2014-007072
  • Public health
    • Research

Electronic-cigarette use among young people in Wales: evidence from two cross-sectional surveys

Press Release
  1. Adam Fletcher1
  1. 1Centre for the Development and Evaluation of Complex Interventions for Public Health Improvement (DECIPHer), School of Social Sciences, Cardiff University, Cardiff, UK
  2. 2South East Wales Trials Unit (SEWTU), School of Medicine, Cardiff University, Cardiff, UK
  3. 3MRC/CSO Social & Public Health Sciences Unit, University of Glasgow, Glasgow, UK
  1. Correspondence to Dr Graham Moore; MooreG{at}cf.ac.uk
  • Received 3 November 2014
  • Accepted 13 February 2015
  • Published 15 April 2015

Abstract

Objectives To examine the prevalence of electronic(e)-cigarette use, prevalence of e-cigarette and tobacco use by age, and associations of e-cigarette use with sociodemographic characteristics, tobacco and cannabis use among young people in Wales.

Design Data from two nationally-representative cross-sectional surveys undertaken in 2013–2014. Logistic regression analyses, adjusting for school-level clustering, examined sociodemographic characteristics of e-cigarette use, and associations between e-cigarette use and smoking.

Setting Primary and secondary schools in Wales.

Participants Primary-school children aged 10–11 (n=1601) and secondary-school students aged 11–16 (n=9055).

Results Primary-school children were more likely to have used e-cigarettes (5.8%) than tobacco (1.6%). Ever use of e-cigarettes remained more prevalent than ever use of tobacco until age 14–15. Overall, 12.3% of secondary-school students (aged 11–16) reported ever using e-cigarettes, with no differences according to gender, ethnicity or family affluence. The percentage of ‘never smokers’ reporting having used e-cigarettes was 5.3% at age 10–11 to 8.0% at age 15–16. The proportion of children who had ever used an e-cigarette and reported currently smoking increased from 6.9% among 10–11 year olds to 39.2% in 15–16 year olds. Only 1.5% (n=125) of 11–16 year-olds, including 0.3% of never smokers, reported regular e-cigarette use (use at least once a month). Current weekly smokers were 100 times more likely than non-smokers to report regular e-cigarette use (relative risk ratio (RRR=121.15; 95% CI 57.56 to 254.97). Regular e-cigarette use was also more likely among those who had smoked cannabis (RRR 53.03; 95% CI 38.87 to 80.65).

Conclusions Many young people (including never-smokers) have tried e-cigarettes. However, regular use is less common, and is associated with tobacco cigarette use. Longitudinal research is needed to understand age-related trajectories of e-cigarette use and to understand the temporal nature of relationships between e-cigarette and tobacco use.

This is an Open Access article distributed in accordance with the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution (CC BY 4.0) license, which permits others to distribute, remix, adapt and build upon this work, for commercial use, provided the original work is properly cited. See: http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0/

blog comments powered by Disqus