Tobacco Use in Canada
Patterns and Trends - 2015 Edition


By Age
| By Sex | By Province

Smoking Prevalence by Age

Smoking prevalence appeared to increase with age: rates were too low to report among grade 6 students, but increased fairly steadily to 18.5% of 19-year-olds (Figure 8.3).

As noted, data up to grade 9 is provided by the YSS, and data from CTUMS is used for older youth. Any difference observed between grade 9 students and 15-year-olds could be due to differences in survey methodologies.

Among students in grades 7-9, smoking patterns by grade were fairly consistent between 2002 and 2012-13, and prevalence was much lower in these years than in 1994 (Figure 8.4).

Over time, smoking among youth aged 15-17 declined fairly steadily. Smoking among 18- and 19-year-olds has also declined, although with less consistency (slight increases in some years), and has plateaued in recent years (Figure 8.4). This has led to a greater difference in smoking rates between older and younger adolescents: in 2013, the smoking rate among 18- and 19-year-olds was nearly triple that of 15- to 17-year-olds.