Why Do Kids Get Started and Get Hooked to Smoking?
Their first cigarette is of course the anchor for the hooking to take place. This is a no brainer of course but it’s important to understand that youngsters try a cigarette knowing that one cigarette cannot harm them.
As a parent if you think you can scare your kid into not smoking, by telling him/her that a single puff of cigarette can cause cancer, then forget it. In fact the possibility that they detest their first smoking experience is pretty high, and then they see people all around them enjoying their smokes and what comes to their mind?
They feel the need to reach a point where they can also start enjoying a cigarette because many people seem to be doing so including their parents.
I did not have this problem with cigarettes, for some reason I did not even have a coughing bout when I inhaled the smoke deep into my lungs. I did not find the scent of tobacco repulsive, on contrary I liked it.
Kids learn to like cigarettes to look macho
In fact I remember my first experiment with drinking whiskey. I poured a generous amount of water to a 90 ml glass of whiskey and drank it down. I nearly puked on the floor.
This was at the age of 16, but then I had seen men drink whiskey like water and I wanted to be like one of them. I fought my revulsion to taste of whiskey and I practiced drinking it daily. It was not long before I acquired a taste for it. I even started drinking whiskey neat without water or soda.
I had my problems with drinking which I was able to manage with age. The point I am making here is that even when a youngster has a bad experience with his/her first smoke, it’s a cinch that they would try again and again till the art is perfected.
Stubborn and resolute kids even try their best to become a smoking artist by learning to puff out smoke rings and learn to inhale longer than normal. Extremely dangerous practices but then when you are a kid you don’t think too much about danger.
Asking a kid to not smoke is like asking him to stop riding his car or bike at break neck speed. Kids don’t learn through advice, if you are a parent with an addicted kid you know what I am talking about.
If a youngster decides to give smoking a try it’s a given that he will become a habituated smoker with time. He might grow up to be mature enough to know that he is creating a hell for himself through his addiction and go through the process of quitting later in case he is lucky.
How do you stop kids from smoking
Not by scaring them of the scrounge of cancer, that’s for sure. Of-course educate them about the afflictions caused by smoking but don’t depend on it to ensure that he/she will not give smoking a try.
Risk taking and the belief that no harm can befall me is an essential ingredient in most of the youngsters. The only way a youngster would avoid smoking is through a value system. A value system is not built instantly but is a work of patience.
Good parents rear kids with good values. A kid with good values usually grows mature enough to know what’s good and what’s bad for his being and for people around him.
Lack of love and respect from parents is usually one main driving force towards losing respect for oneself. Identity is then gained through a pseudo source like cigarette addiction.
Most of the youngsters are abused in subtle or blatant ways in today’s society. It is difficult to find families who inculcate a sound value system into their children. Character is built from childhood.
A youngster who lacks the strength of discipline and character can easily be tempted towards an addictive substance as he believes it to be a panacea for the pain inside. Teach your children to deal with life’s circumstances by depending on their inner source of strength rather than an external source like cigarettes, cannabis or alcohol.
Unfortunately, damage once done cannot be rectified. If you failed to provide a good value system to your kids then you cannot expect them to behave in a responsible manner once they grow into their teen years or post teen years.
A youngster brought up with a lack of good value system would end up living a life which reflects the same adding on vices becomes their identity. Alcohol addiction, drug abuse (which includes cigarette smoking) and careless money spending would be a part of their lifestyle.
Do kids get scared of ‘smoking horror’ commercials
As a smoker you can answer this for yourself. When you started out smoking as a youngster were you not aware that it leads to different forms of health issues?
I am sure you did and in no uncertain terms either. You would have seen commercials on TV talking about how smoking causes health issues. Maybe you were not aware of the more obvious consequences like heart disease, impotence, nasal problems, throat congestion, asthma attacks, stomach and mouth ulcers and strokes.
Once you became addicted you of-course felt worried about the prospect of acquiring health issues but by then you were too powerless to control your addiction. In most cases, and the fear in itself seemed to push you to smoke more.
You cannot scare kids into quitting smoking. Most of the articles I wrote from the medical perspective was to provide you with factual information knowing that it won’t make you quit but will act as one element in this process. Getting your facts right about the health disasters of smoking will help you stop being so complacent about lighting up a cigarette.
To quit is a completely different ball game especially once you are hooked. Your mind is dominating you and the addiction is dominating your mind. Horror commercials, which depend on scare value, have little power over addicted smokers except giving them added fear which try to suppress through smoking.
Youngsters are too reckless to fall for horror commercials. A good population of youngsters die everyday on roads due to rash driving and drunken driving, recklessness is inbuilt in most of them. No amount of advice or commercials will make them stop.
How to make sure your kids dont start smoking
Parents should be doubly vigilant these days,
because teen drug abuse is a real problem that just wouldn’t go away.
The bottom line is that if you want to ensure your kids don’t end up trying on addiction or indulge in a behavior which is considered irresponsible towards their well being, then rear them with love, respect and a good value system.
Let them respect other’s freedom as much as they love their freedom, this is the cornerstone of a peaceful society. Teach them the value of character and help them find their source of inner strength while dealing with suffering, depression, sadness or failures.
Don’t shield them from failure else they will learn to shield themselves from failure for the rest of their lives and this will be done mostly through the help of addiction. Don’t be overly protective, let them face their failures alone and let them handle their sufferings. Failures build character, success has no learning of its own. A youngster who has the strength of character would never behave irresponsibly towards others and towards his/her own self.