December 01, 1998
Meetings & Conventions: Short Cuts December 1998 Current Issue
December 1998
AppleShort Cuts:

Are your kids smoking? Don’t be surprised if the answer is “yes.” From 1988 to 1996, the number of kids ages 12 to 17 who tried cigarettes increased by 30 percent, and the number who started smoking daily rose by 50 percent, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

Teen smoking was on the downswing during much of the ’70s and ’80s, but those positive trends have reversed, says the CDC, based on data from the National Household Survey on Drug Abuse. Each day, more than 6,000 kids under 18 try a cigarette for the first time and 3,000 become daily smokers.

Those who think they won’t get hooked are generally mistaken: Of daily smokers who think they will no longer be smoking in five years, nearly 75 percent are still at it five to six years later. If trends continue, warns the CDC report, “approximately 5 million persons under age 18 will die eventually from a smoking-attributable disease.”

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