Smoking prevalence by age

See data table below with 95% confidence intervals.

In 2017, smoking varied significantly by age group:11  prevalence was highest among young adults aged 45-54 and lowest among youth aged 15-19 (Figure 1.6).

Between 1999 and 2017, prevalence decreased overall in every age group, though to varying degrees (Figure 1.7). The steepest declines were observed in the youngest groups, ages 15-19 and 20-24; the 2017 estimates for these groups were at their lowest since monitoring began.

Declines were less marked among older age groups, with greater variability from year to year. Among those aged 55 and older, little net change has been observed over the last 15 years.

When examining differences between age groups and over time using repeat cross-sectional data such as this, consider that some of the differences between age groups could also be due to cohort effects (as well as age effects), in addition to changes over time.

 See data table below with 95% confidence intervals.