Tobacco use among teenagers has declined during the past decade, a report released by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention said.
The report says that almost 25 percent high school boys and more than 17 percent high school girls have used a tobacco product in the year 2011 and that boys, 12.8 percent, tend to use smoke-less tobacco more than girls,1.6 percent.
The study found that boys and girls in high school are smoking cigars that are cheap and more accessible than cigarettes. The use of these cigars has seen an upward trend, especially among black high school students. These cigars aren't restricted and they come with misleading descriptions like "low tar" and "light."
Smoking at a young age causes long-term addiction as almost 90 percent of adult smokers are those who have begun smoking as a teenager.
Approximately 178 schools and more than 18,000 students participated in the study.
“An overall decline in tobacco use is good news, but although 4 out of 5 teens don't smoke, far too many kids start to smoke every day. Most tobacco use begins and becomes established during adolescence. This report is further evidence that we need to do more to prevent our nation’s youth from establishing a deadly addiction to tobacco," said CDC Director Thomas R. Frieden, MD, MPH.
Last week's CDC Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Report indicated that smoking among teenagers between 2000 and 2011, cigarette smoking decreased by 33 percent while use of tobacco in other forms (cigars and loose tobacco) increased by 123 percent.
The latest report follows up a previous CDC report that showed a decrease in the number of young American smokers.
The study was published in this week’s Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Report.