Scottish Schools Adolescent Lifestyle and Substance Use Survey 2015: e-cigarette use

Information on the use of e-cigarettes among 13 and 15 year olds in Scotland.

Scottish Adolescent Lifestyle and Substance Use Survey ( SALSUS) 2015: Six Key Facts About E-Cigarette Use

1. In 2015, 15% of 13 year olds and 32% of 15 year olds had ever tried an e-cigarette – very similar to the proportions who had ever tried a tobacco cigarette.

Chart: % of 13 year olds and 32% of 15 year olds had ever tried an e-cigarette

2. Between 2013 and 2015, there has been a very large increase in the regular use of e-cigarettes among all groups, particularly regular and occasional smokers. In 2015, 24% of 15 year old regular tobacco smokers also regularly used e-cigarettes, compared with 5% in 2013.

3. However, regular use (once a week or more) of e-cigarettes was less common: 1% of 13 year olds compared with 2% who regularly smoked tobacco, and 3% of 15 year olds compared with 7% who regularly smoked tobacco.

4. Regular and occasional tobacco smokers were much more likely than non-smokers to have ever used or to regularly use an e-cigarette.

Chart: E-cigarette use among 15 year olds, by smoking status and year (2013-2015)

5. Young smokers may be using e-cigarettes to help them stop – regular smokers who had tried to give up smoking were more likely than those who had not tried giving up to use e-cigarettes regularly (28% compared with 20%).

6. Boys were slightly more likely than girls to use e-cigarettes: 25% of boys compared with 22% of girls had ever used them, and 3% of boys used them regularly, compared with 1% of girls. (There were no differences in the prevalence rates for tobacco cigarettes).

SALSUS collects information on smoking, drinking, drug use and other lifestyle factors from young people all over Scotland. It is part of an important and long established series of national surveys which allow comparisons to be made between over time, between different parts of Scotland and between Scotland and other countries. 25,304 pupils participated in the 2015 wave. More information is available at:


Email: Julie Guy

Phone: 0300 244 4000 – Central Enquiry Unit

The Scottish Government
St Andrew's House
Regent Road

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