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Tobacco Facts for Teens

Cigarettes, cigars, blunts, and Black & Milds are dangerous to your health. They will cause you to cough, wheeze, and get colds more often. Long-term, they can kill you from cancer, heart attack or stroke.

Chewing is dangerous, too. It can make you lose your teeth. It can cause cancer of the cheek, gums, tongue, and throat.

Smoking and chewing are addictive. Tobacco contains a chemical called nicotine. Once you start smoking, it’s very hard to quit. Most teens who smoke want to quit, but they can’t.

Smoking gives you bad breath, yellow fingers, stained teeth and smelly hair and clothing. When you’re older, your skin will get wrinkled sooner and you could possibly die from cancer or a heart attack. Sound attractive?

Smoking and sports don’t mix. It’s hard to run when you’re coughing and wheezing and getting out of breath.

It’s not just the smoker that suffers. About 3000 people die of lung cancer each year from breathing other people’s smoke. Friends of smokers can get sore throats and ear infections from breathing the smoke. Be a good friend- Don’t smoke.

Smoking is expensive. Calculate the true cost of smoking using this calculator from the American Cancer Society.

Everyone isn’t doing it. Did you know that:

  • Only 13 out of 100 adolescents have smoked in the last 30 days?
  • Only 8 out of 100 are “frequent” smokers?

That means most kids your age (87 out of 100) don’t smoke.

This material was developed by the TRUE Family Program, Department of Family Medicine, Case Western Reserve University, and adapted for use on NetWellness with permission, 2011.

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Go to the Addiction and Substance Abuse health topic.