Children aged 8 to 15 who have ever smoked

Source: NHS Digital

Base: Children aged 8-15

The proportion of children aged 8 to 15 who said they had ever smoked has declined since 2001.

Notes: The Health Survey for England (HSE) data was collected in participants’ homes. Children aged 8 to 15 were asked about cigarette smoking in a self-completion questionnaire to ensure greater privacy and encourage honest answers. Previous studies have shown that children feel able to answer questions on risky behaviours more honestly when asked away from the home setting, and it is likely that the HSE underestimates the level of smoking among children. For further information about this, see page 17 of the 2015 report on Children's smoking here (pdf).

Year-on-year fluctuations may not indicate real changes and can be within the margins of sampling error. We comment only on the changes that are more likely to reflect a real change.

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