Stress Increases US Adolescent E-Cigarette Use

Stress Increases US Adolescent E-Cigarette Use

New research shows that psychosocial stressors may influence adolescent e-cigarette and combustible cigarette use.

A study published in BMC Public Health (2023) explored the association between psychosocial stressors and current e-cigarette use among adolescents in the United States.

Data from 12,767 participants in the 2019 National Youth Risk Behavioral Survey were used to examine the association between psychosocial stressors (bullying, sexual assault, safety-related absence from school, depressive symptoms, suicidal ideation, physical altercation, and weapon threats) and past-30-day e-cigarette use using multivariable-adjusted logistic regression models. 

Approximately 32.7% reported current e-cigarette use.

The prevalence of current e-cigarette use was higher among individuals who experienced stressors than those who did not. For example, bullying (43.9% vs. 29.0%).

The strength of the association between the stressors and e-cigarette use was similar to that between the stressors and combustible cigarette use.

The authors concluded that the study findings highlight the potential importance of interventions, such as targeted school-based programs that address stressors and promote stress management, as possible means of reducing adolescent e-cigarette use. 

Evidence-informed interventions such as the Vaping Prevention Plus Wellness (PPW) program which integrate e-cigarette use prevention with the promotion of healthy lifestyle behaviors that control stress, including regular physical activity, healthy eating, sleep, and relaxation skills are ideal strategies for concurrently addressing e-cigarette use and psychosocial stress among youth.

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