Smoking Solutions, Essay Sample

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Problem Solution Teen Smoking Essay

Teen Smoking By: Kate Phillips Lately a problem has occurred with teen smokin...

advertisements. If teens or kids are not seeing the advertisements they want
think it is so “cool”. If famous or rich peop...
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Problem Solution Teen Smoking Essay

  1. 1.
    Teen Smoking By: Kate Phillips
    Lately a problem has occurred with teen smoking. The number of
    teens who smoke has dramatically risen over the past years. This is a
    problem because smoking causes big health risks that lead to problems and
    diseases that can kill you. Teens are mainly smoking when there is no
    supervision. It usually occurs in the parks, under bridges, and in town away
    from their parents. They are usually doing it because of peer pressure and
    they think it is cool. Those are the reasons why smoking is bad, and why,
    when and where their doing it.
    One of my solutions to stop smoking is by educating the teens and
    their parents. Schools could have after school classes that tell the hazards of
    smoking. In the classes they could talk about is how bad smoking is to your
    health. They could also show the parents some visuals showing how
    smoking ages your skin and yellows your teeth. In the classes they could
    also show or tell the parents what will happen to their kids if they do not
    stop smoking. This would hopefully convince them to stop buying cigarettes
    for their kids. It would also be important to teach both the students and
    parents about the health risks/ problems and diseases smoking can cause
    such as cancer, emphysema, and heart disease. Finally you could have
    motivational speakers come in and talk to the parents and teens. They could
    talk to the families about alternatives to smoking and share their
    experiences. That would be my first step to end teen smoking.
    My second solution on how to stop smoking is by stopping the media
    that supports smoking. First, we could stop magazine ads. I think stopping
    magazine ads would be a good idea because teens are always reading
    magazines and seeing the pictures in them. If you do not have the ads in
    print, the “glamour” of smoking would be lessened. Next, we could get rid
    of clothing that promotes cigarettes or smoking. It would be a good idea
    because teens are always having to deal with peer pressure. So, if it is not on
    the market or in stores, teens will not think of it as being “cool”. Lastly, we
    could stop advertising smoking on television and in movies. One reason
    why, you should stop having actors/actresses advertise smoking because
    teens look up to them and want to be like them. Also, kids and teens are
    always watching television and movies. That would be my second step in
    stopping teen smoking.
    If I was having to begin today with stopping smoking by teenagers I
    would begin by stopping the media that supports smoking. One reason why I
    think this is the best idea is because teens or kids are always seeing these

  2. 2.

    advertisements. If teens or kids are not seeing the advertisements they want
    think it is so “cool”. If famous or rich people are seen smoking in
    advertisements, teens are likely to think that smoking is part of that lifestyle.
    Because teens look up to these people, they think if they smoke they will be
    cool like the actors/ actresses who do. You always see the big billboards
    with the flashy pictures of the people with cigarettes in their hands or
    hanging out of their mouths. Also you always see the big company names
    displayed all over the gas stations and in many other places such as Camel,
    Marlboro, Pall Mall, Coral, and Winston who are always saying smoking
    will make you feel good about yourself and it will make you cool. Actually,
    it does the opposite. The media does not show pictures of the health issues
    that smoking causes. That is why I think getting rid of the media is the best
    solution to the problem.
    Something can be done. Action can be taken to start to solve this
    problem. First, everybody needs to go out and talk to the companies and
    convince them to take down any pictures with cigarettes and signs of the
    company’s names that promote smoking. You can also talk to those people
    who help make the laws for our state and country. Secondly, we need to talk
    to the companies to end clothing lines that have pictures or words on them
    that promote smoking and ban television and movies that have any type of
    smoking or cigarettes in them. Those are the ways that I think we could
    solve this problem so we can put an end to teen smoking.

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TeensHealth

KidsHealth

/
For Teens
/ Smoking

Smoking

Reviewed by: Elana Pearl Ben-Joseph, MD

Print
en españolEl hábito de fumar

When your parents were young, people could buy cigarettes and smoke pretty much anywhere — even in hospitals! Ads for cigarettes were all over the place. Today we’re more aware about how bad smoking is for our health. Smoking is restricted or banned in almost all public places and cigarette companies are no longer allowed to advertise on TV, radio, and in many magazines.

Almost everyone knows that smoking causes cancer, emphysema, and heart disease; that it can shorten your life by 10 years or more; and that the habit can cost a smoker thousands of dollars a year. So how come people are still lighting up? The answer, in a word, is addiction.

Once You Start, It’s Hard to Stop

Smoking is a hard habit to break because tobacco contains nicotine, which is highly addictive. Like heroin or other addictive drugs, the body and mind quickly become so used to the nicotine in cigarettes that a person needs to have it just to feel normal.

People start smoking for a variety of different reasons. Some think it looks cool. Others start because their family members or friends smoke. Statistics show that about 9 out of 10 tobacco users start before they’re 18 years old. Most adults who started smoking in their teens never expected to become addicted. That’s why people say it’s just so much easier to not start smoking at all.

Hookahs and E-Cigarettes

It’s not only cigarettes that get people dependent on tobacco. Hookahs , staples of Middle Eastern café society, are water pipes used to smoke tobacco through a hose with a tapered mouthpiece. There’s a myth going around that hookahs are safer because the smoke is cooled when it passes through the water.

But take a look at the black, resinous gunk that builds up in a hookah hose. Some of that gets into users’ mouths and lungs. Indeed, experts say hookahs are no safer than cigarettes — and since they don’t have filters and people often use them for long periods, the health risks might be even greater. Hookahs are usually shared, so there’s the additional risk from germs being passed around along with the pipe.

Also beware of electronic cigarettes (e-cigarettes), which contain cancer-causing chemicals and other toxins, including a compound used in antifreeze. These battery-operated devices use cartridges filled with nicotine, flavorings, and other chemicals and convert them into a vapor that’s inhaled by the user.

For some time in the US, hookahs and e-cigarettes have not been regulated or studied by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA), so little has been known about their safety. But as of August 2016, new rules are in place to monitor these products. In the future, hookahs and e-cigarettes that are sold will need to be approved by the FDA, and companies will need to post health warnings so that people know their risks. But one thing is still certain: there’s no such thing as a “safe” nicotine product.

How Smoking Affects Your Health

There are no physical reasons to start smoking. The body doesn’t need tobacco the way it needs food, water, sleep, and exercise. And many of the chemicals in cigarettes, like nicotine and cyanide, are actually poisons that can kill in high enough doses.

The body is smart. It goes on the defense when it’s being poisoned. First-time smokers often feel pain or burning in the throat and lungs, and some people feel sick or even throw up the first few times they try tobacco.

The consequences of this poisoning happen gradually. Over the long term, smoking leads people to develop health problems like heart disease, stroke, emphysema (breakdown of lung tissue), and many types of cancer — including lung, throat, stomach, and bladder cancer. People who smoke can develop skin problems like psoriasis (a type of rash), and are more likely to get wrinkles. Also, they have an increased risk of infections like bronchitis and pneumonia.

Many of these diseases limit a person’s ability to be normally active, and they can be fatal. In the United States, smoking is responsible for about 1 out of 5 deaths.

Smokers not only develop wrinkles and yellow teeth, they also lose bone density, which increases their risk of osteoporosis, a condition that causes older people to become bent over and their bones to break more easily. Smokers also tend to be less active than nonsmokers because smoking affects lung power.

Smoking can also cause fertility problems and can impact sexual health in both men and women. Girls who are on the Pill or other hormone-based methods of birth control (like the patch or the ring) increase their risk of serious health problems, such as heart attacks, if they smoke.

The consequences of smoking may seem very far off, but long-term health problems aren’t the only hazard of smoking. Nicotine and the other toxins in cigarettes, cigars, and pipes can affect a person’s body quickly, which means that teen smokers have many of these problems:

  • Bad breath. Cigarettes leave smokers with a condition called halitosis, or persistent bad breath.
  • Bad-smelling clothes and hair. The smell of stale smoke tends to linger — not just on people’s clothing, but on their hair, furniture, and cars. And it’s often hard to get the smell of smoke out.
  • Reduced athletic performance. People who smoke usually can’t compete with nonsmoking peers because the physical effects of smoking (like rapid heartbeat, decreased circulation, and shortness of breath) harm sports performance.
  • Greater risk of injury and slower healing time. Smoking affects the body’s ability to produce collagen, so common sports injuries, such as damage to tendons and ligaments, will heal more slowly in smokers than nonsmokers.
  • Increased risk of illness. Studies show that smokers get more colds, flu, bronchitis, and pneumonia than nonsmokers. And people with certain health conditions, like asthma, become more sick if they smoke (and often if they’re just around people who smoke). Because teens who smoke as a way to manage weight often light up instead of eating, their bodies also lack the nutrients they need to grow, develop, and fight off illness properly.

Kicking Butts and Staying Smoke-Free

All forms of tobacco — cigarettes, pipes, cigars, hookahs, and smokeless tobacco — are health hazards. It doesn’t help to substitute products that seem like they’re better for you than regular cigarettes, such as e-cigarettes or filtered or low-tar cigarettes.

The only thing that really helps a person avoid the problems associated with smoking is staying smoke-free. This isn’t always easy, especially if everyone around you is smoking and offering you cigarettes. It may help to have your reasons for not smoking ready for times you may feel the pressure, such as “I just don’t like it” or “I want to stay in shape for soccer” (or football, basketball, or other sport).

Stop Smoking: Your Personal Plan

The good news for people who don’t smoke or who want to quit is that studies show that the number of teens who smoke has dropped dramatically. Today, about 10% of high school students smoke — which means 9 out of 10 don’t.

If you do smoke and want to quit, you have lots of information and support available. Different approaches to quitting work for different people. For some, quitting cold turkey is best. Others find that a slower approach is the way to go. Some people find that it helps to go to a support group especially for teens. These are sometimes sponsored by local hospitals or organizations like the American Cancer Society. The Internet offers a number of good resources to help people quit smoking.

When quitting, it can be helpful to realize that the first few days are the hardest. So don’t give up. Some people find they have a few relapses before they manage to quit for good.

Staying smoke-free will give you a whole lot more of everything — more energy, better performance, better looks, more money in your pocket, and in the long run, more life to live!

Reviewed by: Elana Pearl Ben-Joseph, MD
Date reviewed: June 2016

More on this topic for:

  • How Can I Quit Smoking?
  • Stop Smoking: Your Personal Plan
  • Smokeless Tobacco
  • Secondhand Smoke
  • E-Cigarettes
  • Smoking and Asthma
  • How Can I Help My Boyfriend Stop Smoking?
  • What Is a Hookah?
  • Gum Disease
  • Dealing With Addiction

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