Of every 3 young smokers, one will eventually die of smoking-related cause

Youth smoking still matters. In the United States, every day more than 3800 kids try their first cigarette, and over 1000 kids become daily smokers.  88% of smokers smoke their first cigarette before age 18, and most people who don’t start smoking by age 25 never will.  LGBT youth smoking (38-59%) is estimated to be higher than heterosexual youth smoking (28-35%). Smoking rates vary widely based on education level and race/ethnicity.

As of 2010, about 37% of high school students had smoked a cigarette by age 13-14.  In California, 64% of smokers start by the age of 18 and 96% start by the age of 26.  Adolescents and young adults can show symptoms of nicotine addiction within weeks of beginning to smoke, even if they only smoke occasionally.

Smoking in adolescence and young adulthood damages the cardiovascular system, increasing risk of stroke and coronary heart disease. Problems like asthma, impaired lung function and growth, and early signs of heart disease are seen even in young adult smokers. 

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The results of the pilot project demonstrated the feasibility of the intervention and proposed research methodology; recruitment at bar and club venues enabled reaching subpopulations of young adults with very high smoking rates (50-77% smoking prevalence) compared with the California State young adult smoking prevalence of 18%. At 32 months of follow up, Dr. Ling and colleagues found a statistically significant 14% decrease in current smoking in the target community, with a greater reduction (22%) among subculture opinion leaders.

Camel Directly Targets Hipster Neighborhood

Anti-tobacco Social Brand “Two up two down” developed for Hip Hop adolescents in Richmond, VA.  The brand references a local signal, positioning two fingers up and two down, to form letters V and A, representing Virginia.