It is a scary fact that more than ninety percent of adult smokers begin smoking as teenagers. Even though progress has been made in keeping kids from using tobacco, approximately twenty percent of high school students in the United States are smokers. For a long time, the tobacco industry has targeted their marketing towards youth and research has shown that these marketing efforts have led to experimentation with smoking by underage kids. Providing children with tobacco awareness and information on prevention is important in keeping kids tobacco-free. There are a number of anti-smoking campaigns and other resources available to help parents and educators teach children about the dangers of tobacco use and addiction.
Kids may be tempted to try smoking for a number of reasons. Looking cool and fitting in with friends, acting older, feeling independent, appearing tough, and losing weight are all reasons that have been given for trying tobacco. When parents have open communication with their kids, they can combat some of these temptations and keep kids from becoming addicted to smoking.