Lung cancer is now the leading cause of death in the United States. Cigarette smoking is the major cause of lung cancer. Lung cancer accounts for approximately 1 of every 5 deaths each year. The figures for lung cancer are high relx hk because smoking has increased in the younger generation (less than 18 years). Although the findings of the National Youth Risk Behavioral Survey show cigarette use among high school students declined from 1997 to 2003, however, declining rates have slowed and have now leveled off (2003 to 2010). Due to the dangers of cigarette smoking, the slow decline in teen smoking, and the increasing number of deaths due to smoking, it is imperative that information on teen smokers be disseminated to the public and steps taken to prevent smoking during the teenage years. The following are pertinent facts taken from the current literature about teenage smoking and probable reason why teenagers smoke.
Fifteen facts concerning teenage smokers
1. More than 6,000 persons less than 18 years try their first cigarette each day. More than 3,000 of these become daily smokers.
2. The rate of first-daily smoking for adolescents, age 12-17 years and those of young adults, aged 18-25 years have now equalized.
3. At least 4.5 million adolescents (12-17 years) in the United States smoke cigarettes.
4. Teenagers vastly underestimate the addictiveness of nicotine, and believe that they will not smoke in five years, however nearly 75 percent still smoke after five to six years. Most continue to smoke throughout adulthood.
5. Smoking reduces lung function and lung rate growth.
6. Smoking causes early signs of heart diseases and stroke in adolescents.
7. Smoking decreases young people’s physicality in terms of performance and endurance.
8. The resting heart rate of young adult smokers is two-three beats per minute faster than nonsmokers.
9. Smoking at an early age increases the risk of lung cancer
10. Teens who smoke are three times more likely to use alcohol, eight times more likely to use marijuana, and 22 times more likely to use cocaine than non-smokers.
11. A disturbing fact is that 17 percent of teens in 9th grade report smoking.
12. Most smokers begin in childhood or adolescence while those who graduate from high school without smoking are unlikely to smoke at all.
13. Eighty-five percent of people who begin smoking before age 19 become lifelong smokers.
14. The smoking rate among teenagers is equal to and, in some cases, higher than that of adults.
15. The earlier you start smoking, the more likely you are to develop long-term nicotine addiction.