More Welsh primary school children have used e-cigarettes than tobacco

Researchers at Cardiff University find that 6% of 10-11 year olds in Wales have used an e-cigarette at least once

Primary school children in Wales are more likely to have tried an e-cigarette than tobacco, research reveals.

A study published in BMJ Open shows 6% of 10-11 year olds have used an e-cigarette at least once compared to 2% who have used tobacco.

Chief medical officer in Wales Ruth Hussey warned that e-cigarettes could normalise smoking amongst a generation that has grown up in a largely smoke-free society.

‘This research demonstrates that e-cigarettes are being used by young people who have never smoked,’ said Dr Hussey.

‘We should be doing everything we can to prevent a new generation becoming addicted to nicotine because it is a highly addictive substance and has been shown to impact on brain development.’

The study, carried out at Cardiff University on behalf of the Welsh Government, also revealed that 12% of 11-16 year olds had used an e-cigarette.

It was only among 15-16 year old pupils where the percentage of those who have smoked tobacco overtook those who have used an e-cigarette.

To read the full research paper, click here

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