Teenage Smoking Essay

1220 words - 5 pages

Teenage Smoking A growing problem in today's society is the likely hood that if you are between the ages of 13-19, you are more than likely to smoke, or start smoking. Smoking has several negative aspects that most teens that do smoke do not know about, for example the obvious, lung cancer. Lung cancer, however is not the only problem that comes from smoking. Depression falls into this category as well psychiatric problems are amongst many of the problems that may occur as an effect of cigarette smoking. Currently, there 26%-36% of teenagers who smoke cigarettes. (Goodman, 748) This means that out of every 25 teens you know or meet 8 of them are smokers. While conducting a quiz (consisting of six true and false questions) I found that 18 out the 20 people smoke cigarettes. For whatever reason it may be; peer pressure, wanting to look cool, to fit in or just copying their parents, teens who first try smoking and continue "for just a little while" are most likely to become lifetime smokers (depending on how young they start). The younger they (teens) are when they start, the more damage they cause (to themselves).However, peer pressure is one of the main reasons teens start smoking. For example, if your best friend smokes you are 4 times as likely to start smoking. (Scholastic Action, 20) Still, more questions come to mind when trying to evaluate why teenagers or the reasons they start to start to smoke cigarettes. For example, how do young adults get a hold of or buy cigarettes? Keeping adolescents from smoking is a focal issue in tobacco control. The adolescent access laws make it illegal to sell cigarettes to a minor, thus increasing cigarette excise taxes. (Emery, Gilpin, White, & Pierce; 1) However, some merchants only care about their profit and not the consumers', being the teenagers' health or age. Thus being that they do not obey the laws prohibiting the sales of tobacco to minors, 55% of under age smokers buy their own cigarettes. Meaning that the remaining 45% either get someone older to buy them for them, get them from other smokers, or like in most cases of under age smoking they steal them from someone in their family. (Emery, Gilpin, White, & Pierce;2) James C. Anthony Ph. D, a professor of hygiene & Public Health at John Hopkins University in Baltimore conducted a study, "Tobacco Smoking & Depressed mood in Later Childhood & Early adolescence", which was published in the American Journal of Public Health. From 1989 to 1994, Anthony studied 1,731 young people ranging in ages 8,9,13,14. His studies concluded that 598 of them started smoking and that after a year of smoking their depression began. Aside from birth problems, lung cancer, depression, or just serious health problems, did you know that the use of tobacco products is the nations deadliest addictions? More than 400,000 people die primitively of diseases caused by tobacco use. The death toll of tobacco users is higher than the number of people that die of...

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