Number of adolescent smokers at record low

Number of adolescent smokers at record low / Health News

Federal Drug Commissioner: Less and less young smokers


Less and less teenagers smoke. According to the Federal Center for Health Education (BZgA), only 13 percent of adolescents between the ages of 12 and 17 have reported smoking in the past year - more so than ever before since the polls began 30 years ago.

Since 2001, the proportion of adolescent smokers has more than halved, reported the Federal Center for Health Education and the Drug Commissioner of the Federal Government Mechthild Dyckmans (FDP) on Thursday in Berlin. While in 2001, 28 percent of adolescents between the ages of 12 and 17 said they consumed tobacco, in 2010 they were only 13 percent. „For most teenagers, smoking today is completely out“,the evaluation of the director of the Federal Center for Health Education (BZgA), Prof. Dr. med. Elisabeth Pott, on the current numbers.

Proportion of non-smokers among the adolescents increases
According to the data of the BZgA and the Federal Drug Commissioner, the proportion of adolescent smokers last year reached the lowest level at 13 percent, according to the study published 30 years ago. At the same time, the proportion of absolute non-smokers has steadily increased in recent years, reported the director of the BZgA. 68 percent of minors said they had never smoked a cigarette in their lifetime during the study last year. Ten years ago, the proportion of absolute non-smokers was only 41 percent, according to the BZgA. Today is „Non-smoking (...) firmly established in our society especially among adolescents and young adults“, Prof. Dr. Elisabeth Pott. As part of the „According to the director of the BZgA, "non-smoking today is relatively widespread not only among young people but also among young adults between the ages of 18 and 25. For young adults, the proportion of non-smokers is also clear, according to current study results reduced - from 43 percent in 2008 to 38 percent in 2010.

Young Smoker: Little difference in boys and girls
The juvenile smokers show only insignificant differences in terms of gender distribution. Of the 12- to 17-year-old boys, 14 percent admitted smoking compared to 12 percent of girls. However, in the last two years, the girls have seen a particularly clear decline from 16 to 12 percent, whereas the proportion of smokers in boys fell by just one percentage point from 15 to 14 percent, according to the BZgA. Two years ago, even more girls smoked than boys, but last year more boys took the cigar, reported the Federal Drug Commissioner and the BZgA on Thursday. The average age at which young people smoke a cigarette for the first time is 14, according to the latest study, which is also slightly later than the two-year study. In 2008, the teenagers smoked their first cigarette on average at 13.7 years, in the years before with 13.6 years, said the director of the BZgA

Change of consciousness to not smoking
In view of the decline in the number of young smokers, Mechthild Dyckman's Drug Commissioner was also pleased and rated this as a success of the preventative programs and intensive education in recent years. „The further decline in smoking among adolescents shows that long-term success has been achieved in helping children and adolescents with tobacco prevention measures“, stressed the Federal Drug Commissioner. This is a sign, „that there is a change of consciousness in society for not smoking.“ To consolidate the success of the past years, „we need to continue and develop preventive measures in children and adolescents“, Dyckmans explained. „Because many who do not smoke at a young age will not even begin to do so as adults“, added the director of the BZgA, Prof. dr. Elisabeth Pott.

prevention campaign „smokeless“ shows success
Particularly promising are the results of the prevention campaign that has been ongoing since 2003 „smokeless“been the BZgA. The campaign's goal was to convince teenagers between the ages of 12 and 17 of the benefits of not smoking, so they do not even reach for the cigarette. As part of the prevention campaign, for example, various measures and projects are offered in the school sector. In addition, exit aids, such as the online exit program „smokeless“, provided to help the adolescent smoker fight their addiction. (Fp)

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Picture: Rainer Sturm