Like most states, Kentucky showed a drop in reported cigarette smoking among 12- to 17-year-olds from 2002 to 2010, according to a report by the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration. Nationwide, teenagers' reported "current use" of cigarettes dropped from 12.6 percent to 8.7 percent. In Kentucky, that decline was even more significant, plummeting from 17.6 percent in 2002 to 11 percent in 2010. The 2002 rate was third in the nation; the latest one is sixth. The surveys defined "current use" as smoking in the past month. (Click on map for larger version)
Strangely, the data showed that during the same period, teens' perception of risk from cigarette smoking remained unchanged in Kentucky and most other states. Tobacco use is the leading cause of premature and preventable death in the United States. (Read more) To read the full report, go here.