When it comes to cigarettes and vaping, LGBT teens take the bigger hit.
Double the amount of gay, lesbian and bisexual teens smoke compared to their straight and questioning peers according to a recent study by the Ohio Department of Mental Health and Addiction Services.
Breaking down percentages, one-fifth (20 percent) of LGB teens vaped in the last 30 days, while 17.5 percent smoked. That’s compared to six percent of straight teens smoking and 10 percent vaping.
The number of transgender or gender nonconforming teens who smoke is nearly half as much as cis teens — over 25 percent have vaped and nearly 20 percent smoked.
According to Jackson Siegel, youth program coordinator for the LGBT Community Center of Greater Cleveland, trans teens smoke because of the stresses of social stigma. He claimed these teens also pick up smoking habits to fit into peer groups.
"They have a desire to belong somewhere," he said.