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Press Release
Teenagers do listen to their parents when it comes to smoking
Wednesday, March 4, 2009

(Photo: sanja gjenero/STOCK.XCHNG)
Parents can help their teenagers to never start smoking. A Swedish study published in the open access journal BMC Public Health has found that adolescents respond positively to their parents' attitudes towards smoking.

The research, carried out by a team led by Maria Nilsson of Umeå University, Sweden,

Teenagers are more positive today towards their parents' attempts to discourage them from smoking, regardless of whether or not they smoked, than in the past. The most effective actions parents could take include dissuading their children from smoking, not smoking themselves and not allowing their children to smoke at home. Younger children were more positive about these approaches than older children.

Use of snus, a type of moist snuff, remained relatively constant. Fewer teenagers thought their parents would be concerned about snus use, probably reflecting a general perception that snus is less of a health hazard than smoking. Unsurprisingly, older children were more likely to smoke or use snus than younger children.

The authors of the study concluded that the prevalence of smoking in adolescents in Sweden has fallen and an increasing number of teenagers have never smoked. "The fact that adolescents respond positively to parental attitudes to smoking is encouraging," says Nilsson. "Parents should be encouraged to intervene with respect to their children's tobacco use." The findings are contrary to suggestions that children resent interventions by their parents to discourage them from smoking.


BioMed Central:

Thanks to BioMed Central for this article.

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