Current Levels of Underage Alcohol and Tobacco Use
Levels of Youth Alcohol and Tobacco Use
Below are the percentages of U.S. high school students (grades 9 to 12) who report any or current alcohol and tobacco use (as of 2013, the most recent figures available). Current use is defined as having used at least once in the past 30 days.
SOURCE: 2013 High School Youth Risk Behavior Survey Data, Youth Risk Behavior Surveillance System, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.
Overall Declines in Use
Overall levels of youth smoking and alcohol use have declined between 1991 and 2013.1 For example:
|Ever had a drink of alcohol||82%||66%|
|Ever tried smoking cigarettes||70%||41%|
E-Cigarette Use Has Increased
Use of e-cigarettes doubled (from 3.3% to 6.8%) from 2011 to 2012.2 In addition, the number of U. S. middle and high school students who had never smoked but had used e-cigarettes increased three-fold between 2011 and 2013, from 79,000 to over 263,000.3
- Take the quiz to examine the ways you address alcohol and tobacco use in your family.
- Learn about preventing youth alcohol use.
1. Youth Risk Behavior Surveillance System (2013). Trends in the prevalence of alcohol use—National YRBS: 1991—2013. Atlanta, GA: Centers for Disease Control and Prevention; and Youth Risk Behavior Surveillance System (2013). Trends in the prevalence of tobacco use—National YRBS: 1991—2013. Atlanta, GA: Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.
2. Centers for Disease Control (2013, November 15). Tobacco product use among middle and high school students — United States, 2011 and 2012. Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Report, 62(45), 893-897.
3. Centers for Disease Control (2014, August 25). More than a quarter-million youth who had never smoked a cigarette used e-cigarettes in 2013 (news release).