Prevalence and correlates of electronic-cigarette use in young adults: findings from three studies over five years

Addict Behav. 2015 Feb;41:142-7. doi: 10.1016/j.addbeh.2014.10.019. Epub 2014 Oct 23.

Abstract

Background: We aimed to examine prevalence and correlates of past-month electronic cigarette ("e-cigarette") use and use of e-cigarettes to aid a cessation attempt in three samples of young adult smokers recruited online in 2009-2010 (Study 1), 2010-2011 (Study 2), and 2013 (Study 3).

Methods: Participants were young adults aged 18 to 25 who smoked at least one cigarette in the previous month (Study 1, N=1987 and Study 2, N=570) or smoked 3 or more days each week and used Facebook 4 or more days per week (Study 3, N=79). We examined both past-month e-cigarette use and ever use of e-cigarettes to quit conventional cigarettes.

Results: Prevalence of past-month use of e-cigarettes was higher in each subsequent study: Study 1 (6%), Study 2 (19%), and Study 3 (41%). In multivariate analyses, significant correlates of past-month e-cigarette use were identified for Study 1 (male sex OR=2.1, p=.03; past-year quit attempt OR=1.6, p=.03) and Study 2 (male sex, OR=1.7, p=.03; younger age OR=0.88, p=.05), but not Study 3. In multivariate analyses, significant correlates of ever use of e-cigarette to quit conventional cigarettes were identified for Study 1 (education, OR=1.2, p=.02; smoking within 30min of waking, OR=2.8, p=.02; past year quit attempt OR=4.1, p=.02), and Study 3 (desire to quit smoking, OR=1.3, p=.02), but not Study 2.

Conclusions: E-cigarette use is increasingly common among young adults, particularly men. E-cigarette use for quitting conventional cigarettes appears more common among those more nicotine dependent and interested in quitting.

Keywords: E-cigarette; ENDS; Electronic cigarette; Smoking; Vaping; Young adults.

Publication types

  • Research Support, N.I.H., Extramural

MeSH terms

  • Adolescent
  • Adult
  • Age Factors
  • Electronic Nicotine Delivery Systems / statistics & numerical data*
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Motivation
  • Prevalence
  • Smoking Cessation / methods
  • Smoking Cessation / statistics & numerical data
  • Tobacco Use Disorder / epidemiology*
  • Tobacco Use Disorder / therapy
  • United States / epidemiology
  • Young Adult