Smoking prevalence among males and females

Bar chart showing current smoking prevalence among males and females in 2020. Trends described in text. Data table below with 95% confidence intervals.

In 2020, 12.1% of males (1.9 million) and 8.6% of females (1.4 million) were current smokers (Figure 1.4). Overall prevalence was significantly higher among males than females,5 as were both daily and non-daily smoking.6,7

Between 2019 and 2020, overall smoking prevalence among females decreased significantly, from 11.1% to 8.6%.8 However, among males there was no significant change from the 2019 estimate of 12.7%.9

In all survey years from 1999 to 2020, smoking prevalence estimates were greater among males than females, although the magnitude of this difference varied (Figure 1.5). 

Figure 1.4 data table with 95% confidence intervals

Figure 1.4: Current smoking prevalence (%) among males and females, 2020
  Daily Non-daily
Males 9.1 [7.9-10.3] 3.0 [2.3-3.6]
Females 6.9 [5.9-7.9] 1.8 [1.2-2.3]

Data source: Canadian Tobacco and Nicotine Survey, 2020.


 

Figure 1.5 data table with 95% confidence intervals

Figure 1.5: Current smoking prevalence (%) among males and females, 1999-2020
  Females Males
  Overall Daily Non-daily Overall Daily Non-daily
1999 23.3 19.4 4.0 27.3 22.7 4.8
2000 23.1 18.5 4.8 25.8 21.4 4.6
2001 19.6 [17.9-21.3] 15.9 [14.2-17.7] 3.8 [3.1-4.4] 23.9 [22.2-25.6] 20.3 [18.6-22.0] 3.7 [3.0-4.3]
2002 19.9 [18.7-21.0] 16.4 [15.2-17.5] 3.6 [3.0-4.1] 23.0 [21.8-24.3] 19.0 [17.7-20.2] 4.2 [3.6-4.8]
2003 18.5 [17.2-19.8] 14.4 [13.1-15.6] 4.1 [3.5-4.8] 23.3 [21.5-25.1] 19.0 [17.2-20.8] 4.3 [3.5-5.1]
2004 17.2 [15.9-18.6] 13.5 [12.3-14.7] 3.8 [3.1-4.4] 22.0 [20.4-23.7] 16.5 [15.1-17.9] 5.5 [4.6-6.5]
2005 15.9 [14.6-17.2] 12.3 [11.1-13.5] 3.6 [3.0-4.2] 21.6 [19.9-23.3] 17.7 [16.0-19.4] 3.9 [3.2-4.6]
2006 17.0 [15.7-18.3] 13.0 [11.9-14.1] 4.0 [3.3-4.6] 20.3 [18.8-21.8] 15.4 [14.1-16.7] 4.9 [4.1-5.7]
2007 18.1 [16.7-19.5] 14.3 [13.0-15.7] 3.8 [3.2-4.5] 20.4 [18.9-21.9] 16.4 [15.0-17.8] 4.0 [3.3-4.7]
2008 15.7 [14.5-17.0] 11.6 [10.5-12.6] 4.2 [3.3-5.0] 20.1 [18.5-21.7] 15.4 [14.0-16.8] 4.7 [3.7-5.7]
2009 15.9 [14.4-17.3] 12.1 [10.9-13.4] 3.7 [3.0-4.5] 19.2 [17.6-20.8] 15.1 [13.6-16.5] 4.2 [3.4-5.0]
2010 13.8 [12.6-15.1] 10.9 [9.7-12.1] 2.9 [2.4-3.5] 19.7 [18.2-21.3] 15.3 [13.9-16.6] 4.5 [3.5-5.4]
2011 15 [13.7-16.4] 12.1 [10.8-13.4] 3.0 [2.4-3.5] 19.7 [17.9-21.4] 15.5 [13.8-17.1] 4.2 [3.3-5.1]
2012 13.9 [12.6-15.2] 10.5 [9.4-11.7] 3.4 [2.7-4.0] 18.4 [16.6-20.3] 13.2 [11.6-14.8] 5.2 [4.1-6.4]
2013 13.3 [11.8-14.8] 10.1 [8.8-11.4] 3.2 [2.3-4.0] 16.0 [14.2-17.9] 11.6 [10-13.3] 4.5 [3.6-5.4]
2015 10.4 [9.2-11.6] 7.9 [6.8-9.0] 2.5 [2.0-3.1] 15.6 [14.0-17.3] 10.9 [9.4-12.4] 4.8 [3.9-5.7]
2017 13.5 [11.7-15.3] 9.7 [8.1-11.3] 3.8 [2.7-4.9] 16.7 [14.4-19.0] 11.9 [9.9-13.9] 4.8 [3.5-6.0]
2019 11.1 [9.9-12.2] 8.5 [7.4-9.5] 2.6 [2.0-3.2] 12.7 [11.2-14.1] 8.7 [7.5-10.0] 3.9 [3.1-4.8]
2020 8.6 [7.5-9.7] 6.9 [5.9-7.9] 1.8 [1.2-2.3] 12.1 [10.7-13.4] 9.1 [7.9-10.3] 3.0 [2.3-3.6]

Data sources: Canadian Tobacco Use Monitoring Survey, 1999-2012 (CTUMS); Canadian Tobacco, Alcohol and Drugs Survey (CTADS), 2013, 2015, 2017; Canadian Tobacco and Nicotine Survey (CTNS), 2019, 2020.

Note: CTNS asked respondents to self-report "gender" with response options Male, Female, or Specify Other, while CTADS/CTUMS recorded sex of respondents.