The age groups with the highest rates of use were men aged 26 to 30, at 6.3%, and women aged 21 to 25, at 4.6%.
E-cigarette use grew from 0.6 percent in 2018 to 1.7% last year, said the study which gathered responses 25,000 people aged 18 or older. The age groups with the highest rates of use were men aged 26 to 30 AT 6.3% and women aged 21 to 25 (4.6%), revealed the HPA.

“To put this growth into perspective, use of traditional cigarettes grew only marginally over this period, from 13 percent in 2018 to 13.1 percent in 2020,” said  HPA Tobacco Control Division official Lu Meng-ying. “The situation needs urgent attention, especially as new e-cigarette users are almost all young people.”

Asked why they use e-cigarettes, 38.9% of respondents said it was due to curiosity, 17.3% said it was an attempt to quit regular cigarettes and 9.7% said it was because their friends use them. “The UN says that e-cigarettes are ineffective as a means of quitting regular cigarettes, so this motivation is worrying,” added Lu.

In the absence of e-cigs most vapers would have taken up smoking

However public health and tobacco harm reduction experts would argue that such a stance is misguided. A number of studies have now indicated that people who seek out risky and exciting experiences are more likely to use multiple illicit substances regularly, including nicotine via e-cigarettes. This means that in the absence of e-cigarettes these individuals are likely to take up smoking.

One such study of high school seniors in the U.S., found that the participants’ attitude towards vaping also reflected how they viewed other substances. Other studies have indicated that in places where vaping is on the rise, smoking rates are dropping. This confirms that in the majority of cases, vaping is replacing smoking.

Read Further: Taipei Times

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