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Tobacco Control Policies Directed at Adults Also Lower Teen Smoking Rate

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Tobacco control policies, such as clean indoor air laws and increased cigarette prices, can also lower the rate of teen smoking, a new study suggests.

The study, conducted in Australia, found that the better funded the tobacco control programs are, the more they reduce smoking rates in teens, ScienceDaily reports.

Tobacco control policies aimed at adults can influence teens’ smoking in several ways, according to the study authors. As adult smoking declines, teens don’t have as much of an opportunity to see smoking as an adult activity. When parents who smoke quit, it is less likely that their children will start smoking. The researchers also note that anti-smoking ads that talk about the health consequences of smoking in an emotional way may have an impact on teens.

The study is published in the journal Addiction. Study co-author, Melanie Wakefield, said in a journal news release, “The only way to get this double benefit is to create a rigorous anti-smoking program in the first place. If governments are determined to reduce smoking in this generation and the one to follow, they must choose effective policies and finance them properly. There’s no other way around it.”

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