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Web sites help teens kick the habit



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Earlier this year, CBS News noted a rise also in the number of teens smoking “dope” (marijuana), reporting nearly one in 10 smokers lighting up 20 or more times a month. These findings reverse several years of a decline in teen marijuana smoking. (Despite common folklore, smoking marijuana can cause health problems as well as cigarettes).

Updated: November 6, 2012 9:58AM

Teen smoking is on the upswing. Want to keep your teen smoke free? Check out some of these websites for help:

The Mayo Clinic offers 10 ways for teens to stay smoke free. These include appealing to your teen’s vanity to avoid the smelly habit that turns teeth yellow and can cause a chronic cough. Cigarettes also contain about 4,000 chemicals including arsenic (rat poison) and carbon monoxide (car exhaust).

Kids Health features several articles for teens to help them quit smoking — on using smokeless tobacco, addiction, motivation, the respiratory system, the effects of secondhand smoke — written in a straightforward manner, not as a lecture.


Based on the 12-Step program, this website directs the reader to meetings of Nicotine Anonymous in their own town. Also available: online meetings. Sharing a common cause (ie: wanting to quit smoking) helps 12-Step attendees to reach their goals without judgment or fear of being exposed publicly (attendees are not required to speak during meetings). Donations are asked for, but not required.

Confidential live help from the National Cancer Institute arrives in two ways: real time chat online or a live phone call. Look around the website for a variety of other tools, including a quit guide that can be downloaded. You also may choose to order hard copies of the guide.

Your teen can receive texts that help him or her to stay motivated to quit. Text QUIT to 47848, answer a few simple prompts and you are good to go (or get), text-wise. If you pay a mobile phone provider for texting, those fees will apply.

Gannett News Service

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