U.S. Smoking Rate Hits All-Time Low

quit smoking
quit smokingAdobe Stock

Key Takeaways

  • Smoking rates hit an all-time low in the U.S. last year — 1 in 9 adults used traditional cigarettes

  • But the use of electronic cigarettes grew, especially among high schoolers

  • Smoking bans and a lack of social acceptability are among reasons for the decline in traditional tobacco use

THURSDAY, April 27, 2023 (HealthDay News) -- Fewer U.S. adults are smoking cigarettes, as rates dropped again last year, according to federal health officials.

In all, 1 in 9 American adults smoked cigarettes last year, an all-time low, and a significant change from the 1960s when 42% smoked.

The results weren’t all positive, the Associated Press reported, as vaping rose to about 1 in 17 adults. For 2022, use of electronic cigarettes was about 6% compared to 4.5% the year before.

These preliminary findings are from a survey of more than 27,000 adults by the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. The findings are sometimes revised after further analysis.

“I think that smoking will continue to ebb downwards, but whether the prevalence of nicotine addiction will drop, given the rise of electronic products, is not clear,” Dr. Jonathan Samet, dean of the Colorado School of Public Health in Aurora, told the AP.

For nearly 40 years, Samet has been a contributing author to the U.S. Surgeon General's reports on smoking and health.

The preliminary findings for 2022 pegged the percentage of adult smokers in the United States at 11%, down from about 12.5% the year before, the AP reported.

While more adults smoke cigarettes than vape, the opposite is true for minors. About 14% of high schoolers used e-cigarettes last year, compared to about 2% who smoked traditional cigarettes, according to CDC data.

Smokers are at risk for lung cancer, heart disease and stroke. E-cigarette concerns include nicotine addiction with a risk of high blood pressure and narrowing of the arteries, according to the American Heart Association.

Taxes, increased prices and smoking bans are among the reasons for lowered rates of smoking, according to the AP. Smoking is also not as socially acceptable as in the past.

More information

The American Heart Association has more on the effects of nicotine.

SOURCE: Associated Press

What This Means For You

Taxes, increased prices and smoking bans have significantly cut smoking rates, but experts are concerned about the rising popularity of vaping, which also has health risks.

Related Stories

No stories found.