Cigarette smoking hit the lowest point ever recorded among American eighth-graders, high school sophomores and seniors last year, a newly released report shows.

Last year, only 5% of high school sophomores said they had smoked cigarettes daily in the last 30 days, compared with 18% of sophomores who were smoking daily at one point in the 1990s. The numbers have also plunged for eighth-graders and high school seniors, hitting their lowest point since the surveys began.

The change is just one of the findings in a vast new report on the well-being of American children, compiled by the Federal Interagency Forum on Child and Family Statistics. The report drew together research from a host of government agencies and research groups, including the National Institute on Drug Abuse, which tracked cigarette smoking.

Besides being less likely to smoke, U.S. kids are less likely to be exposed to secondhand smoke, the report showed. The percentage of nonsmoking kids ages 4 to 11 whose blood had a detectable level of cotinine, a breakdown product of nicotine, fell from 53% to 42% from 2007-08 to 2009-10.

Source: Los Angeles Times
http://www.latimes.com/news/science/sciencenow/la-sci-sn-cigarette-smoking-kids-20130712,0,4337960.story