Banning Tobacco Sales to People Under Age 21 Reduces Smoking

Image of a woman holding a traditional cigarette in one hand and an e-cigarette in the other.

"County- and municipality-level bans on tobacco sales to individuals under age 21 yield substantive reductions in smoking among 18- to 20-year-olds, according to a new study from the Yale School of Public Health.

"Published online in the journal Nicotine and Tobacco Research (PDF), the study examines how  “tobacco-21 laws” affect smoking among 18- to 20-year-olds residing in metropolitan/micropolitan statistical areas (MMSAs), which are clusters of adjacent counties that include an urban center with at least 10,000 residents.

"The researchers found that, all else being equal, the smoking rate among 18- to 20-year-olds declines when the percent of an MMSA covered by tobacco-21 laws increases. This trend is not evident for 23- to 25-year-olds, providing further evidence that the finding for 18- to 20-year-olds reflects a response to tobacco-21 policies, said the researchers..."

Author: Michael Greenwood.

Outlet: Yale News.