Menthol and Mint Cigarettes and Cigars: Initiation and Progression in Youth, Young Adults and Adults in Waves 1-4 of the PATH Study, 2013-2017

Andrea C. Villanti, Amanda L. Johnson, Michael J. Halenar, Eva Sharma, K. Michael Cummings, Cassandra A. Stanton, Cristine D. Delnevo, Olivia A. Wackowski, Maansi Bansal-Travers, Jennifer L. Pearson, David B. Abrams, Raymond S. Niaura, Geoffrey T. Fong, Tara Elton-Marshall, Dorothy Hatsukami, Dennis R. Trinidad, Annette Kaufman, Michael D. Sawdey, Ethel V. Taylor, Wendy I. SlavitOlga Rass, Wilson M. Compton, Andrew Hyland

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract

INTRODUCTION: This study examined in youth (12-17 years), young adults (18-24 years), and adults (25+ years): (1) the prevalence of the first menthol cigarette and menthol/mint cigar use among new tobacco users; (2) association between the first menthol/mint use, subsequent tobacco use, and nicotine dependence ~1 year later compared with the first non-menthol/mint use. AIMS AND METHODS: Longitudinal analysis of data from Waves 1 to 4 of the Population Assessment of Tobacco and Health (PATH) Study (2013-2017; 10 086 youth and 21 281 adults). Main outcome measures were past 12-month and past 30-day cigarette and cigar use, and nicotine dependence. RESULTS: Youth and young adult new cigarette users are more likely to smoke a menthol cigarette or indicate that they do not know the flavor compared with adults aged 25+. A greater proportion of adults aged 25+ first used menthol/mint-flavored cigars (13.4%) compared with youth (8.5%) and young adults (7.4%). Among young adults, first use of a menthol cigarette is associated with past 12-month use of cigarettes at the subsequent wave and first use of any menthol/mint-flavored cigars is associated with past 30-day use of these products at the subsequent wave in both youth and young adults. In youth and adults, there were no significant relationships between first use of a menthol/mint cigarette or cigar and nicotine dependence scores at a subsequent wave in multivariable analyses. CONCLUSIONS: The first use of menthol/mint cigarettes and cigars is associated with subsequent cigarette and cigar use in young people aged 12-24. IMPLICATIONS: This study examined the relationship between initiation with menthol cigarettes and menthol/mint cigars, subsequent tobacco use, and nicotine dependence in US youth, young adults, and adults who participated in Waves 1-4 of the Population Assessment of Tobacco and Health study. New use of menthol cigarettes was associated with greater past 12-month cigarette use in young adults and new use of menthol/mint-flavored cigars was associated with greater past 30-day cigar use in youth and young adults compared with non-menthol use. Initiation with menthol/mint cigarette and cigar products may lead to subsequent use of those products.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1318-1326
Number of pages9
JournalNicotine & tobacco research : official journal of the Society for Research on Nicotine and Tobacco
Volume23
Issue number8
DOIs
StatePublished - Aug 4 2021

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Public Health, Environmental and Occupational Health

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