Tobacco smoking and how to stop teens from smoking it
Tobacco smoking and how to stop teens from smoking it.
If the current tobacco smoking rate in the U.S. does not decline, 5.6 million youths aged below 18 years are likely to die prematurely due to smoking-related disease (US Department of Health and Human Services (USDHHS) “The Health Consequences” 12). The number of middle and high school students using tobacco products in 2015 in the U.S. was 4.7 million (Singh et al. n.pag.). Some of the causes of tobacco smoking among teens include marketing by tobacco companies, vulnerability of the youths, and social norms. Cigarette companies use different marketing strategies to encourage teens to smoke. Moreover the teens are more vulnerable to marketing and willing to take risks than adults (USDHHS “Preventing Tobacco Use” 3). Societal norms such as smoking in public also influence the teenagers. Although tobacco smoking is a serious health issue among teens, it can be prevented through increased cigarette prices, education media campaigns, comprehensive smoke-free laws, and restricted tobacco marketing.
Solutions to Tobacco Smoking
Tobacco smoking among teens can be reduced through education media campaigns. Such campaigns can educate the young people on the dangers of tobacco smoking and help them in making healthy choices (Siegel and Biener 383).
The problem can also be eliminated by making it harder for the teenagers to smoke tobacco. For example, increasing the price of tobacco cigarettes can deter the teenagers from smoking (Ross and Chaloupka 217).
Comprehensive smoke-free laws can reduce tobacco smoking among teens. Such laws should prohibit smoking in places such as restaurants, bars, work sites, near schools, and other public buildings (USDHHS “Preventing Tobacco Use” 5). As a result, the teenagers will not be influenced by social norms to smoke tobacco (Farkas et al. 720).
The exposure of teenagers to the marketing of tobacco in mass media should be reduced. Increased exposure of the youths to tobacco products in movies, television, and magazines leads to a rise in teen smoking (Lovato et al. 8). Therefore, tobacco marketing should be restricted.
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