Study: More Black Kids Smoking Cigars

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-Extensive use of price-reducing promotions has led to higher rates of tobacco use among young people than would have occurred in the absence of these promotions.

-Many of the newest smokeless tobacco products do not require users to spit, and others dissolve like mints; these products include snus—a spitless, dry snuff packaged in a small teabag-like sachet—and dissolvable strips and lozenges. Young people find these products appealing in part because they can be used without detection at school or other places where smoking is banned. However, these products cause and sustain nicotine addiction, and most youth who use them also smoke cigarettes.

-Through the use of advertising and promotional activities, packaging, and product design, the tobacco industry encourages the myth that smoking makes you thin. This message is especially appealing to young girls. It is not true; teen smokers are not thinner than nonsmokers.

For some teens, the allure of buying and smoking gives them status when they are at an age of rebellion.

“They are looking for a way to say, ‘hey, I’m on my own,’” McGoldrick said.

“Each year, the tobacco industry spends almost $10 billion to market its products and half of all movies for children under 13 contain scenes of tobacco use,” said Howard Koh, assistant U.S. Secretary for Health.

“Half of our states continue to allow smoking in public places, and images and messages normalize tobacco use in magazines, on the Internet, and at retail stores frequented by youth,” Koh said. “With a quarter of all high school seniors and a third of all young adults smoking, the time is now to get a better handle on the large number of teens using tobacco products.”

Matthew L. Myers, President of the Campaign for Tobacco Free Kids, believes the survey shows that tremendous progress has been made in the fight against tobacco use, the nation's number one cause of preventable death.

“But it is also a timely reminder that the battle against tobacco is far from over,” Myers said.

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