This chapter describes smoking status and tobacco consumption. It also reports on adults’ use of non-tobacco nicotine delivery products such as e-cigarettes. We cover children and smoking in a separate chapter.
The chapter also presents data on self-reported exposure to secondhand smoke and data on saliva cotinine, an objective measure of non-smokers’ exposure to environmental tobacco smoke.
- About one in four men and one in six women said they were smokers.
- Men smoke more than women, with the average number of cigarettes smoked per day at 12.5 for men and 10.8 for women. Older smokers had higher consumption.
- Smoking prevalence was highest for men in the West Midlands and women in the North East and Yorkshire and the Humber.
- The proportion of smokers in the lowest two income groups was double the proportion in the highest income groups.
- 31% of men and 24% of women who had a limiting longstanding illness were current smokers.
Trends in smoking
- Among women, there has been a steady decline in the proportion of smokers since around 2003. Among men there have been fluctuations year on year since 2006 rather than a continuing downward trend.
Use of e-cigarettes
- 3% of adults were currently using e-cigarettes while 2% of men and 1% of women were using other nicotine delivery products but not e-cigarettes.
- Among men, 29% of current smokers and 6% of ex-smokers had used e-cigarettes. The proportions were similar for women.
Second hand smoke
- Self-reported exposure to second hand smoke was highest among those aged 16-24; over half of this age group reported at least some exposure.