If a person begins smoking when they are a teenager, he stands an increased chance of becoming addicted to the product. That addiction could lead to a lifelong smoking habit and all the health problems that come with it. If the research on smoking so clearly indicates that it can cause a number of potentially fatal health problems, why do teenagers start smoking? There is no single answer to this question, but rather there are a variety of reasons for why a teenager would pick up the habit.
Feeling pressured to begin smoking by a teenager's peers is a remarkably common cause for teenage smoking. The teenage years can be an awkward, uncomfortable time, full of change for a young person. As a result, many try to blend in as much as possible, not wanting to stick out from the group. That means that if a teenager's peers start smoking, there can be a lot of pressure to take up the habit as well.
Smoking is a habit that is often discouraged by parents, and that may be the reason a teenager picks up the habit. The teenage years are often a time when a person begins to test boundaries put in place by authority figures, whether they be teachers, coaches or parents. A common way to push that rebellion is by trying smoking. Couple that with the appeal that can come with being the "bad" boy or girl, and smoking may seem like an enticing habit for some teenagers.
Some teenagers grew up seeing adults smoke on television and in movies. Once a child becomes a teenager, he no longer wants to be seen as a young child, but rather as an adult. In that effort to appear older, a teenager might take up smoking. Since he only sees adults smoking, a teenager might reason that if he takes up smoking, he will look older too.
A common reason teenagers pick up a smoking habit is because they are used to seeing it in their homes. Their parents smoke and possibly their grandparents smoke. The habit is commonplace in the home and with family members, so it seems almost natural to begin when a child reaches the teenage years.
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