Higher taxes on e-cigarettes that may boost smoking in young adults

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To curb the use of increasingly popular e-nicotine delivery systems, such as e-cigarettes, the 30 states of the United States and Washington, DC are imposing taxes on these products. However, ever-increasing evidence suggests that among adults, these taxes may increase tobacco smoking. This is a habit whose health effects are more likely to be more harmful than smoking nicotine, according to the National Academy of Sciences and Medicine.

What is less clear is how taxes affect the habits of 18-25 year olds. This population is often grouped with adults in studies. Abigail Friedman, an associate professor at the Graduate School of Public Health, is particularly concerned about this group, as people usually transition from experimental nicotine use to daily use during these ages.

In a new study published in the journal on July 19th AddictionFriedman and her co-author, Michael Pesco of Georgia State University, said cigarette and e-cigarette taxes smoking When vaping Nicotine in this age group.

For research, the authors compared Survey data Increasing taxes on tobacco and nicotine vaporizing products across the state, about smoking and vaporizing young adults compared to those that do not. They found that increasing taxes on nicotine vaporizing products by $ 1 per milliliter not only reduced the group’s daily vaporization rate by 2.5 percent, but also increased recent smoking rates by 3.7 percent. discovered. Similarly, a $ 1 increase in tobacco tax has reduced recent smoking by 2.5 percentage points and equally increased daily vaporization of nicotine products.

Friedman said the findings show that tax policy requires subtle differences.

“Anyone who wants to tax one cigarette or nicotine product needs to think about the tax rates for all the other products,” she said. “When people are substituting a product and raising the price, some subsets switch to cheaper options, even if they don’t like the product very much. From a public health standpoint, the following is important: That cheap option is also less harmful. “

Evidence that cigarettes are more deadly than nicotine vapor-breathing products suggests that smoking-increasing taxes are worse for public health than increasing taxes. nicotine vaping, researchers say.

The team also found that this young population was about three times more responsive to steam product taxes than was found in previous studies aged 18-40.

“Drawing the entire 18-40 year old range with a wide brush gives a very different indicator of what the reaction will be,” she said. “And it makes sense that people between the ages of 18 and 25 are much more responsive. This is the peak age range where people are moving from experimenting with tobacco products to habitual use. Elderly people You can see that far more people are taking it than “”

According to Friedman, studies in this area tend to divide the population into children and adults, but future studies need to consider these “emerging adults” themselves, as she mentions. there is.

“One of the things this study reveals is that the gap between children and adults isn’t clean,” she said. “From 18 to 25 years old represents an important transition period for the transition from the experiment. Tobacco products For regular use, these are important target ages if you are trying to interrupt the onset of habitual smoking and vaporization. ”

New research finds low vaporization of global adolescence

For more information:
Abigail S. Friedman et al, Youth Response to Tobacco and Electronic Nicotine Delivery Systems, Addiction (2022). DOI: 10.1111 / add.16002

Provided by
Yale University

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Higher taxes on e-cigarettes that may boost smoking in young adults

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