Greater Teen Social Media Use Tied to Increased Cigarette Use

Findings show dose-response relationship for both cigarettes and e-cigarettes
Greater Teen Social Media Use Tied to Increased Cigarette Use
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Medically Reviewed By:
Mark Arredondo, M.D.

FRIDAY, May 17, 2024 (HealthDay News) -- Social media use is associated with an increased risk for cigarette smoking and electronic cigarette use in teens and young adults, according to a study published online May 16 in Thorax.

Nicholas S. Hopkinson, Ph.D., from Imperial College London, and colleagues used data from 10,808 participants (aged 10 to 25 years) in the U.K. Household Longitudinal Study (2015 to 2021) to examine the association between time spent on social media with youth cigarette smoking and e-cigarette use.

The researchers found that in adjusted models, more frequent use of social media was associated with greater odds of current cigarette smoking, with strongest associations seen at higher levels of use (adjusted odds ratio [aOR], 3.60 for at least seven hours/day versus none). For e-cigarettes, associations were similar (adjusted odds ratio, 2.73 for at least seven hours/day social media use versus none). Dose-response associations were seen for time spent on social media and both cigarette and e-cigarette use. For cigarettes, associations were similar when stratified by sex and household income. However, associations were concentrated among males and those from higher household-income groups for e-cigarettes.

"This reinforces concerns that social media is a vector of direct and indirect marketing and promotion of these products and that policies to curtail this may be warranted," the authors write.

Abstract/Full Text


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