Study: Countries With Higher Tobacco Taxes Had Higher Teen Vaping Rates

A recent study published in Addiction analyzed data gathered from 47 countries between 2015 and 2018, with the intention of measuring teen vaping rates worldwide.

The study titled, “Association between the implementation of tobacco control policies and adolescent vaping in 44 lower-middle, upper-middle, and high-income countries,” gathered data from 51,960 teens aged between 13 and 15 years from lower-middle, upper-middle, and high-income countries who participated in the World Health Organization’s Global Youth Tobacco Survey.

The research team found that approximately 1 in 12, or 8.6%, of adolescents reported vaping in the past 30 days, while 1 in 60, or 1.7%, said they vaped for more than 10 days in the past month. These figures suggest that the majority of teens who vaped did so on an experimental basis and do not use the products regularly. Moreover, countries with higher tobacco taxes tended to have higher teen vaping rates.

The smoking cessation potential of vapes
Meanwhile, an article published in the American Journal of Public Health, highlighted that the potential of smoking cessation via e-cigarettes is being largely overshadowed by media coverage on the potential risks that vaping represents for teens.

Kenneth Warner, dean emeritus and the Avedis Donabedian Distinguished University Professor Emeritus at the University of Michigan’s School of Public Health, and 14 other past presidents of the Society for Research on Nicotine and Tobacco co-authored an article highlighting how the potential benefits of vaping are being overshadowed by all the panic surrounding the potential risks of teen vaping.

“Because evidence indicates that e-cigarette use can increase the odds of quitting smoking, many scientists, including this essay’s authors, encourage the health community, media, and policymakers to more carefully weigh vaping’s potential to reduce adult smoking-attributable mortality,” reads the article.

The authors reviewed the health risks of e-cigarettes, their potential for smoking cessation and addressed the concerns about youth vaping. Taking all this into consideration they then highlighted the need to balance any valid concerns regarding teen vaping and the products’ potential benefits for adult smoking cessation.