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Information for instructors

Despite many efforts to educate people about the dangers of smoking, more young people than ever before, especially girls, smoke today. This is in spite of the fact that we know beyond any doubt that smoking may affect:

  • the smoker’s health
  • the health of people around the smoker

So why do people continue to smoke? People’s reasons for smoking are similar to those for drinking alcohol1:

  • the media and advertising make it look attractive
  • it’s a sign of adulthood
  • family role models and attitudes show it’s acceptable
  • it’s a way for young people to rebel against their parents or other adults
  • for pleasure
  • to keep their weight down
  • it’s addictive, and so it’s hard to give up

Instructors can help learners make healthy decisions about smoking by:

  • helping them understand why people smoke
  • explaining how smoking affects their health and that of people around them
  • supporting those who are trying to reduce their smoking or trying to stop smoking
  • helping them understand issues around smoking
  • providing them with sources of information about smoking

1 Adapted from Canadian Public Health Association, What the HEALTH!

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