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  1. Hawkins, Summer Sherburne PhD
  2. Ghiani, Marco PhD
  3. Baum, Christopher F. PhD


Background: Despite an increase in adolescent use of electronic nicotine delivery systems (ENDS), little is known about the role of tobacco control policies on ENDS use.


Objective: For aim 1, we examined how trends in adolescent use of cigarettes were affected by the introduction of ENDS; for aim 2, we examined the associations between ENDS age restrictions, cigarette taxes, and smoke-free legislation and adolescent use of ENDS and cigarettes.


Design and Setting: Repeated cross-sections of the 1999-2015 Youth Risk Behavior Surveys linked to state-level tobacco control policies.


Participants: 938 486 adolescents aged 14 to 18 years from 45 states.


Main Outcome Measures: For aim 1, we examined adolescent use of cigarettes. For aim 2, we examined adolescent use of ENDS, only ENDS, and cigarettes.


Results: We found there was an overall decreasing trend in adolescent use of cigarettes, but the actual decline was greater than the predicted decline for 17- and 18-year-olds. While we found no associations between ENDS use and ENDS age restrictions or cigarette taxes, ENDS use was 3.8 percentage points higher in those states with smoke-free legislation for combustible tobacco products.


Conclusions: Our findings highlight that ENDS age restrictions may not be adequate to curb ENDS use and additional local- and state-level policies governing ENDS are needed.