Study reveals dramatic increase of 74% in vaping youth in Canada


Canadian Cancer Society calls for immediate action by federal and provincial governments

OTTAWA, June 20, 2019 / CNW / – The Canadian Cancer Society (CCS) is calling for immediate government action to address a significant and troubling increase in vaping youth in Canada. The increase in rates was revealed in a new study published in the British Medical Journal.

The study, led by the teacher David Hammond of University of Waterloo, found that among those 16-19 years old, vaping increased a stunning 74% from 2017 to 2018, from 8.4% to 14.6%. The study was conducted in August /September 2017 and again in August /September 2018.

The study presents the first data since the major tobacco companies launched and heavily announced their own brands of electronic cigarettes Canada following the May 2018 the adoption of the Bill S-5, which legalized electronic cigarettes with nicotine. The results of the study are consistent with indications of Canada of secondary schools struggling to respond to a rapid increase in vaping youth.

Evidence indicates that young people who use e-cigarettes with nicotine may become addicted and are at greater risk of becoming smokers.

The study also found that cigarette smoking among 16- to 19-year-olds in the same period from 2017 to 2018 increased by 45% from 10.7% to 15.5%. Previous research up to and including 2017 has shown a continuing decline in smoking among youth. However, these relative results indicate that smoking among young people may be increasing now.

"E-cigarettes are for adult smokers who could not stop," he says. Rob Cunningham, Senior Policy Analyst, CCS. "But the results of this new study on youth trends are a tremendous concern. Given the progress that has been made to reduce smoking among young people, we must prevent a new generation of adolescents from becoming addicted to nicotine through vaping products."

The CCS recommends that provinces increase the minimum age for 21 years for the sale of tobacco products and vaping products, as 16 US states have already done. Provinces should also prohibit the sale of flavored vaping products, except in specialty adult vape stores. Alberta and Saskatchewan, the only provinces without legislation on vaping products, should immediately approve comprehensive legislation. Ontario should ban the advertising of vaping products in convenience stores and other retailers, as did seven other provinces.

CCS recommends that the federal government move quickly to adopt regulations that restrict vaping product advertising, ensuring that regulations are at least as restrictive as marijuana advertising, including medical marijuana. The federal government should also adopt restrictions on the use of flavors in vaping products, along with other regulatory measures.

"Current measures to prevent vaping youth are clearly not working," adds Cunningham. "Governments need to act now to reduce both youth vaptism and smoking among young people."

The rates of vaping and smoking among the youth cited in the study refer to the use in the past day 30, which is the common measure for the prevalence of smoking. Tobacco use is the leading preventable cause of illness and death in Canadakilling about 45,000 Canadians each year, including 30% of all cancer deaths.

CanadaAround the world, smokers can call 1-866-366-3667 to receive proven, personalized support to stop smoking. The Canadian Cancer Society operates the Saskatchewan, Manitoba, Ontario, Prince Edward Island and the Yukon through the smokers' support line and Quebec through the line ARRÊTE.

About the Canadian Cancer Society
The Canadian Cancer Society is a national community-based organization whose mission is to eradicate cancer and improve the quality of life of people living with cancer. When you want to know more about cancer, visit our website or call our Free and Bilingual Cancer Information Service at 1 888 939-3333 (TTY 1-866-786-3934).

SOURCE Canadian Cancer Society (National Office)

For more information: Rob Cunningham, Senior Policy Analyst, Canadian Cancer Society, [email protected], phone: (613) 565-2522 ext. 4981

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