The news come as the FDA is scrambling to address teenage access to electronic cigarette and liquid nicotine products. That survey also found a dramatic rise in vaping among children and prompted federal regulators to press for measures that make it harder for kids to get them.
However, nowadays, marijuana use, along with other drugs consumption, has fallen to the third place, surpassed by vaping and alcohol.
Health experts fear that the high nicotine content of vaping liquids can be extremely addictive for teenagers and ultimately lead them to traditional cigarettes.
The prevalence of nicotine vaping almost doubled among 10th-graders as well, with almost 1 in 6 using the electronic devices, researchers reported Monday in the New England Journal of Medicine.
Last month, the US Food and Drug Administration, facing mounting pressure to act on the rising popularity of vaping devices, announced sweeping new restrictions on flavored tobacco products, including e-cigarettes.
They found that the use of traditional cigarettes is still at a record low, with 3.6 percent of high school seniors smoking daily, compared with 22.4 percent two decades ago.
More than 37 percent of high school seniors say they've vaped, which is up from just over a quarter previous year.
California state Sen. Jerry Hill (D-San Mateo), lead author of the state bills, said his proposals would curb the "epidemic proportion" of vaping among teens. Juul has taken steps to reduce teenage vaping, he said, such as ending the sales of certain flavored pods at retail stores starting last month, strengthening the age verification process on its website and eliminating its Facebook and Instagram accounts.
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The percentage of Class 12 grade students who reported use of nicotine in the past 30 days significantly increased to 28.5 in 2018 from 23.7 in 2017.
The survey has tracked drug, alcohol and cigarette use among teens since 1975.
Compton said more progress is needed, however. Misuse of prescription opioids also decreased.
E-cigarettes have been a divisive topic in the public health community.
Amongst other things, the Committee proposed reviewing provisions in the Tobacco and Related Products Regulations, to include HnBs in the Government's annual review of safer nicotine products, and also reassess the evidence supporting the ban on snus.
"These results suggest that vaping is leading youth into nicotine use and nicotine addiction, not away from it", Miech added.
Use of other illicit drugs - including cocaine, methamphetamine, heroin, ecstasy and hallucinogens - did not change substantially in the past year, according to the survey results. It was more common in older kids - about 1 in 17 high school seniors said they use marijuana every day. Fewer teens reported binge drinking (five or more drinks in a row).