Tobacco use among middle and high school students --- United States, 2000-2009

MMWR Morb Mortal Wkly Rep. 2010 Aug 27;59(33):1063-8.


Tobacco use continues to be the single leading preventable cause of death and disease in the United States. More than 80% of established adult smokers begin smoking before age 18 years. To monitor trends in tobacco use among middle and high school students, CDC analyzed 2000-2009 data from the National Youth Tobacco Survey (NYTS), a school-based survey that collects information on tobacco use and related behaviors and attitudes from middle school (grades 6-8) and high school (grades 9-12) students. This analysis indicated that in 2009, 8.2% of middle school students and 23.9% of high school students reported current use of any tobacco product; 5.2% of middle school students and 17.2% of high school students reported current use of cigarettes. Overall prevalence did not decrease from 2006 to 2009 for use of any tobacco product among either group. During 2000-2009, the prevalence of current tobacco use among middle school students declined (15.1% to 8.2%), as did current cigarette use (11.0% to 5.2%) and cigarette smoking experimentation (29.8% to 15.0%). Similar trends were observed for high school students (current tobacco use: 34.5% to 23.9%; current cigarette use: 28.0% to 17.2%; cigarette smoking experimentation: 39.4% to 30.1%). Overall, no change in susceptibility to initiate cigarette smoking was observed for either group. To further decrease tobacco use and susceptibility to use among youths, restrictions on advertising, promotion, and availability of tobacco products to youths should be combined with full implementation of evidence-based, communitywide, comprehensive tobacco control policies.

MeSH terms

  • Data Collection
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Prevalence
  • Smoking / epidemiology*
  • Students / statistics & numerical data*
  • Tobacco, Smokeless*
  • United States / epidemiology