Teens and Smoking: The Importance of Parental Involvement
Every year, many teens take up smoking â€“ a habit which often continues to their adulthood and leads to several health problems later in life. Research shows that 16% of high school children experiment with cigarette smoking.Â Studies also reveal that when parents are involved in their child’s activities, friends, performance etc. , teens are less likely to take up smoking. To handle the problem of teens and smoking, parental involvement is very important.
Why is parental involvement important to prevent teen smoking? Experts believe that during teenage, children are on the verge of independence. Parents can expect the peer pressure to slowly build up in their kid’s lives. During this stage, teens may be still sensitive to the parent’s values and concerns. Hence, if a teen realizes that their parents would disapprove of smoking, he/she is less likely to take up.
The Dangers of Teens and Smoking Habit:
- The more early teens take up smoking, the greater the risk that it will form a life-long addiction
- Smoking addiction among teens usually starts occasional smoking
- Smoking puts teenagers at high risk of respiratory illnesses, improper lung function and growth
- Smoking puts teens at a risk of lung cancer, heart disease, oral cancer in later life
A research by National Institute of Child Health and Human Development (NICHD) shows that parents involvement in their child’s activities, performance, friends etc. can help the teens to overcome peer pressure in starting the smoking habit. This positive influence in parents involvement was seen in both girls and boys.
Teens and Smoking: Tips for Parents:
- Be involved in your kid’s lives, such as your child’s friends, activities in school, issues as he/she grows up etc.
- Convey clearly that you do not approve the smoking habit
- Teach your child the consequences of smoking. Do remind that smoking is a dirty habit.
- Do not hesitate to monitor your child’s behavior
- Give proper diversion to your child, such as sports, music etc.
Teens and smoking is a deadly combination. Hopefully, proper counseling and parent involvement can discourage teens from taking up smoking