No Explanation for why Teenagers Smoke

Published on September 22nd, 2009 11:11

Montreal - What are the main causes which make teenagers to take up smoking? Unfortunately nobody especially adults can’t explain that. And so, concentrating on one single risk factor is not likely to help adolescents abstain peer pressure to smoke, or help improvement the understanding of why young people smoke, Dr. Jennifer O’Loughlin and colleagues reported in a recent study.

Teenagers Smoke

Ms. O’Loughlin, at the University of Montreal in Quebec, suggested that attempts to prevent smoking should take into account factors such as age, self-respect, alcohol use, and academic luck. Among those enumerated factors should also be added contextual factors such as smoking in parents and friends, and school smoking policies.

Researchers studied how numerous factors changed smoking initiation among 877 students (half male), who were pushing 13 years of age at the start of the study and had never smoked.

Every 3 months for the next 5 years, the researchers surveyed students’ smoking habits and other factors possible joined with starting to smoke. During this period, 421 (48 percent) of the students started smoking, and 87 (21% of these) took up daily smoking.

At the end of the investigation, researchers found that living in a single-parent family and poor academic performance in school also can increase smoking risk. Using alcohol and other tobacco products upped risk nearly 3- and 5-fold.

They also found that having siblings and friends who smoked raised an adolescent’s risk for smoking about 2- and 3-fold. Having a parent or teachers and school staff who smoked increased the risk of beginning to smoke by about half or more.

Feeling the need for a cigarette raised smoking risk 6-fold. Even the adolescents who felt stressed, acted impulsively, and showed susceptibility to tobacco advertising were also more likely to start smoking.

Unlike the up factors, gender, parents’ education, feelings of depression, worry about weight or being overweight, seeking novel experiences, physical activity or playing sports, and television watching were some of the factors not linked with increased smoking risk.

Cigarette smoking is a very widespread activity, and consumption has today reached the level of a global epidemic. Every year, 5500 billion cigarettes are manufactured, and 1.2 billion people smoke worldwide. This number is equivalent to approximately 1 in 3 of the global population over 15 years of age. It is estimated that by 2030, the number of cigarette smokers in the world will reach 2 billion.

Researchers suppose that prevention and cessation programs that target social, home, and school smoking, as well as tobacco advertising, may have a positive impact on adolescent smoking.

By Joanna Johnson, Staff Writer Copyright © 2010 TobaccoPub. All rights reserved.

Related tags: smoking | smoke | smoking habit | smokers | teenagers | tobacco products

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