Most people who try one cigarette become daily smokers, study says

Researchers found that 69% of people who had ever tried a cigarette had gone on to become a daily smoker even if just temporarily

For those who think one cigarette will not make them addicted to it, here is a warning, it will.

According to the lead researcher, Professor Peter Hajek, from the Queen Mary University of London, it is the first time a connection between trying the first cigarette and becoming a regular smoker has been established using such a large number of participants.

They said that the study, published in the journal Nicotine And Tobacco Research, provides support for reducing cigarette experimentation among teenagers.

Have you ever just smoked a cigarette to "try" it?

The study was based on the data collected from the Global Data Exchange which consisted data of eight surveys which has been conducted since 2000.

Combined, the surveys (three from the USA, three from the United Kingdom, one from Australia, and one from New Zealand) included responses from more than 216,000 individuals who had been selected at random to provide a representative sample of the general adult population of the countries involved.

"We've found that the conversion rate from "first-time smoker" to 'daily smoker" is surprisingly high, which helps confirm the importance of preventing cigarette experimentation in the first place.

The study's authors said the research showed the "remarkable hold" cigarettes could establish after one experience. 60 per cent of the youngsters revealed that they had tried a cigarette once in their lifetime, with almost 69 per cent admitted to having progressed to becoming addicts.

They say that as the surveys used different methods, there was quite a wide margin of error and the "conversion" rate could be anywhere between 60.9% and 76.9%.

Concerns were expressed that e-cigarettes could be as addictive as conventional cigarettes, but this has not been the case.

There was also a large discrepancy in results between the surveys, with the conversion rate from trying cigarettes to daily smoker ranging from 50% in one of the United States surveys to 82% in one of the UK surveys.

The Medicines and Healthcare Products Regulatory Agency told MPs: 'E-cigs will improve public health if they become a route out of smoking for large numbers of adult smokers, without providing a route into smoking for children and non-smokers or generating new health risks. "The presence of nicotine is clearly not the whole story", Hajek said. In 2010 nearly 20% of people smoke in the United Kingdom, and in 2017 that number shrunk to 19.3%.

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