Protect Our Youth
When your product ends up killing the people who buy it, you’re constantly looking for new customers. The tobacco industry is finding new ways to get youth hooked on tobacco. It’s working in Colorado. Six out of 10 high school students in Colorado who attempt to buy cigarettes are successful, leading to 4,900 becoming regular smokers each year before they are even 18 years old. Put another way, it’s projected that 90,600 Colorado youth currently aged 17 and younger will die from smoking.1,2
The nicotine in tobacco is highly addictive, making it easy to go from using tobacco every once in awhile to all the time. It’s estimated that three out of four high school smokers will remain smokers into adulthood. Of these smokers, one out of three will die about 13 years sooner than nonsmokers.3
The tobacco industry uses its marketing power to make tobacco use look attractive and cool, and makes it seem like using tobacco is okay. The cigarette industry spends more than $8 billion in marketing each year and the smokeless tobacco industry spends an additional $451.7 million.
So what are some of the strategies the tobacco industry is using to appeal to youth?
Talking to Your Teen About Tobacco Use
Believe it or not, adults, especially parents, still continue to be the strongest influence in a teen’s life. Start talking with your teen about the pressures they’re dealing with such as peer pressure to use tobacco. Having these types of conversations can start to help teens make healthier choices. Below are some tips to ensure your teen is tobacco-free:
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