Several young people take to smoking since one of their parents also smokes. Family influences their smoking habits. They imitate their parents and feel it is alright to smoke since their parents do so. This has been highlighted in World Health Organization (WHO) study, which further states that these young people have a casual approach towards smoking.
Family plays a major role in determining the behavior patterns of children. Even teenagers often do what their parents do. They justify their actions. Smoking is no exception to this. If parents smoke, then their offspring would also like to smoke. Parents may find it difficult to check this tendency. Let us throw more light on this trend.
Why Youth Take to Smoking Under Family Influence?
- Young people like to imitate their parents. They are role models for them. Whatever the parent does is okay for them. If they smoke, then they feel it is alright for them to do so
- Most teenage smokers come from families where at least one parent smokes
- The young mind is conditioned by family influence and these youngsters develop a casual attitude towards smoking
- Children of parents who smoke, may die of cancer in later life
- One needs to encourage more of smoke-free adults to prevent cancer among children in later life
- Such children have more toxins in their body as compared to children coming from non-smoking families
- Teenagers like to feel they are also “adults” and can smoke
- Even if the older siblings smoke, then the younger ones also tend to do the same thing. They justify their actions by pointing a finger at the older siblings or at parents who smoke
- Youth, who belong to families that smoke, have easier access to cigarettes
- In such families, where smoking is prevalent, it is difficult to prevent the youth in the family from smoking. If attempts are made to do so, then the youth tend to find more excuses to smoke, and will definitely develop the habit
Young people smoke because their parents do so or an older sibling in the family does. Parents, who themselves smoke, cannot prevent their children from smoking. They have to set an example themselves before preventing their children from doing a particular thing. They have to stop smoking in order to ensure that their children do not do so.
A research was done by people at University of Oklahoma Health Sciences Center in 1999 where they found that family members could influences smoking habits in youth.