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Smoking Prevention Methods Help Teens Stop Smoking

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Could raising the legal age for purchasing and smoking cigarettes prove to be a smart tactic when it comes to smoking prevention methods? After statistics proved 90% of cigarette smokers started smoking prior to the age of 19, society might want to take this into strong consideration.

Smoking Prevention Methods

As far as smoking prevention methods go, the latest discussion came from a group of professionals when they came to the conclusion that cigarette smoking could have an overall 3% decrease in its frequency by the year 2100, if the legal age to smoke were brought to the age of 19, according to CTV News. Another study found similar results for individuals starting smoking at the age of 25, except that there would be a 16% decrease in the frequency of smoking by year 2100.

While a majority of states throughout the nation sell cigarettes to buyers over the age of 18, there are four states that have set the minimum age to 19.  These states include Alabama, Alaska, New Jersey, and Utah.  In addition to this, New York City and and a few other locations have increased the minimum age of purchase to 21.

Understanding age and brain development

This smoking prevention method could prove to be effective at helping younger generations, because it would keep younger individuals from being able to purchase cigarettes easily.  When it is more difficult for younger individuals to obtain cigarettes, it won’t be as easy for them to begin smoking cigarettes early on.

“While the development of some cognitive abilities is achieved by age 16, the parts of the brain most responsible for decision making, impulse control, and peer susceptibility and conformity continue to develop until about age 25,” explained board member Richard Bonnie, who works at the University of Virginia in Charlottesville.

Bonnie ended with saying, “A balance needs to be struck between the personal interests of young adults in being allowed to make their own choices and society’s legitimate concerns about protecting the public health and discouraging young people from making decisions they may later regret, due to their vulnerability to nicotine addiction and immaturity of judgment.”  In other words, if the minimum age for cigarettes is raised, the younger generation will have the odds in their favor when it comes to having better judgement later in their life.

Smoking cigarettes can clearly be seen as an issue in society, so if there are ways that would act as a smoking prevention method and they can be put in place, then these should be considered.  It’s not news that nicotine is dangerous and in fact classified as a habit-forming drug.  According to CTV News, even with the known dangers of smoking cigarettes, there are still 40 million American smokers.

It’s no secret that smoking cigarettes can lead to health consequences like cancer, diabetes, heart disease, and ultimately death, but as with other addictions, consequences can mean nothing to an addict.  Addictions can be powerful, but they don’t have to take over an individual’s everyday life.  Finding ways to quit smoking can begin with getting educated about the facts and learning about the most effective smoking prevention methods because ultimately the best way to stop is not to start!




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