Why teens smoke?`

The main reason for the youngest to start smoking is the desire to feel accepted by their friends

Image: Gail Rau

The snuff is one of the drugs most used by young people. According to the Spanish Lung Cancer Group (GECP), almost 30% of Spanish adolescents smoke. This is a very serious health problem, because the risks associated with snuff are greater the earlier the smoking habit starts. In addition, adolescents are more vulnerable to the addictive effects of nicotine, because their brain is still developing. This article describes what are the factors that encourage young people to start smoking and to continue smoking habit, click here to see water pipes for sale.

Spanish adolescents start smoking, on average, to the 13 and a half years old. As Alejandro Pérez Milena, family doctor and coordinator explains Study Group Adolescent Andalusian Society of Family and Community Medicine ( SAMFyC ), “from that age there is a significant smoking increase. You go from a consumer test , another linked to leisure time. ”

Thus teenagers between 16 and 18 smoke more than younger ones . “Just over 25% of adolescents 18 years of age smoke every day”. And, according to a study by this group SAMFyC, “adolescents consume on average between 8 and 10 cigarettes per day. This consumption increases when smoked on a weekend or associated with leisure time, and reaches 15- 20 cigarettes a day. ”

The first cigarette in adolescence

The pressure group of friends is a key to start the smoking factor. “The need to establish social relations can make adolescents feel compelled to go to places of entertainment (such as bottle) where smoking is normal , ” Perez said. “It is proven that teens do not smoke if friends do not support the consumption of snuff , ” he says. As the ‘Youth and smoking, “the report Pfizer Foundation , having smoking friends is the main reason for young people to start smoking.

Among adolescents, consumption of snuff is more prevalent among girls, although men tend to smoke more quantity and more frequently

Among adults, there are more male smokers than female smokers. However, among adolescents, consumption of snuff is more widespread among girls , “although young men tend to smoke more quantity and more often , ” said the expert.

Also the reasons that lead to smoking are different according to gender. Thus, according to this specialist explains, for adolescent males , “smoking is a role of personal authority in relation to their peers, a step toward maturity and acceptance of the uniformity of the group of friends”. That is, smoke to be important, gain power in your group of friends and feel older. Instead, in the girls ‘ curiosity prevails, the sense of weight control and the positive influence her smoking to improve their relationship , “says Perez.

Nicotine addiction young

On the other hand, after the first use of snuff can create a physical dependence . As Pérez highlighted, “up to half of adolescent smokers has an addiction to nicotine. And this dependence is high in one of five”. Dependence is a facilitating factor that keeps its consumption.

A study of the Faculty of Medicine of the University of Massachusetts (USA) ensures that adolescents are more vulnerable to the addictive effects of nicotine , because their brain is still developing. This addiction can be generated from the first puff . According to data from this study, 40% of 332 adolescents evaluated showed symptoms of addiction, although many of them had tried snuff only once.

In addition, we must not forget that the risks associated with smoking are dangerous, and they increase as soon as the custom is started. Specialists of the Spanish Group Lung Cancer (GECP) in a 2008 study, pointed that, due to the earliness with which smoking began, more and more cases of lung cancer below age 40 .

Teenagers: easy access to snuff

Alejandro Perez, “the snuff is still a great social acceptance that normalizes consumption: teens may see smoking as a normal activity of daily life.” Although it is not permitted to under 18 buy snuff, for them it is still very easy to acquire. And this easy access to such addictive substance is a problem in the fight against smoking among adolescents . “Avoid indiscriminate selling to minors is a highly effective measure against youth smoking , ” says the specialist.

Smoking prevention, the best strategy

The best way to avoid the problems associated with snuff is to prevent consumption. The Observatory for Smoking Prevention , the Ministry of Health, Social Services and Equality, estimated that up to one million Spaniards could have stopped smoking since it came into force the current anti – smoking law in January 2011, which prohibits doing so in bars , restaurants and other entertainment venues. According to the ‘Youth and smoking’ report, the law has caused a decline in consumption among young people . Even the study notes, “the vast majority of young people, including those who smoke, values ​​positively the new anti – smoking law.”

On the other hand, the adolescent environment plays a very important role to prevent smoke. “The attitudes of parents also adds Alejandro Pérez millenarian condition, since a smoke – free environment at home and parents to monitor their children smoking are protective factors.”