1997 National Household Survey on Drug Abuse
Cigarette Use, by Age Group, Race/Ethnicity, and Gender (Table 8.5)
Among young adults aged 18 to 25, both white males and white females were significantly more likely than their counterparts in the black or Hispanic racial/ethnic groups to have smoked cigarettes in the past year or past month. In particular, white females aged 18 to 25 were roughly twice as likely as black or Hispanic females to be current smokers. Nearly half of young adult white males were current cigarette users compared with about 39% and 40% of black or Hispanic males, respectively.
Among youths aged 12 to 17, white males and females were significantly more likely than their black or Hispanic counterparts to have ever smoked a cigarette. White female youths also were significantly more likely than black or Hispanic female youths to have smoked in the past year or past month. Among male youths, the rate of past year cigarette use also was significantly higher among whites compared with blacks. However, rates of current smoking did not differ significantly by race/ethnicity for male youths.
In addition, as was discussed previously, males in general were often more likely than females to be past year or current cigarette smokers, with the notable exception of cigarette use among male and female youths. For the total population aged 12 or older, however, the rates of past year and current cigarette use did not differ significantly between white males and females. In comparison, for the black and Hispanic racial/ethnic groups, there continued to be a significantly higher prevalence of past year and current smoking among males in the total population.
Furthermore, the general relationship between cigarette use and gender was reversed for past month cigarette use among white youths. Specifically, about 24% of white female youths were current cigarette users, and this was the highest rate of past month cigarette use among the different groups of youths shown in Table 8.5. In addition, the prevalence of current smoking among white female youths was significantly higher than the corresponding prevalence among white male youths (20%).
This page was last updated on December 30, 2008.