American teens are staying away from cigarettes in greater numbers than they have in generations. That’s among the good news in a new survey of more than 41,000 students published on Tuesday. But for the first time in a national survey, teens reported puffing on electronic cigarettes more than smoking conventional tobacco.
Teens are behaving better when it comes to drinking alcohol and abusing pills such as Vicodin and OxyContin. Cigarette smoking among high school students has been declining since the late 1990s, and the drop got sharper in the last few years. Today just 6.7 percent of high school seniors light up daily, less than half as many as a decade ago.