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Parents and Kids: Tobacco-free Tips
Parents and guardians can take the following actions to help their children stay or become tobacco-free:
Be Smoke Free
- Set a good example and be a positive role model by not using tobacco.
- If you don't smoke, don't start!
- If you do smoke, quit! If you smoke, share your struggles to quit with your children.
- Maintain a smoke-free home and car.
Talk With Kids
- Give clear, consistent messages about the dangers of tobacco.
- Emphasize the immediate, health effects of smoking or using tobacco.
- Emphasize the effects of smoking on physical appearance.
- Tell your kids that you don't want them to smoke and will be disappointed with them, if they do.
- Help children critically analyze messages that glamorize tobacco use on television, in movies and in magazines.
- Destroy the myth that everybody smokes.
- Share tobacco-use prevention information with children and talk with them about anything and everything.
- Teach children to manage emotions.
- Teach children to be social without tobacco.
Talk With Teachers
- Work with the school board to provide youth tobacco cessation programs, rather than punishment, for students who violate tobacco-use policies.
Other Helpful Links
- The Toll of Tobacco in Michigan - Campaign for Tobacco-Free Kids (tobaccofreekids.org)
- The Toll of Tobacco in the United States - Campaign for Tobacco-Free Kids (tobaccofreekids.org)
Sources: Tobacco-Free Kids, 2009, Schwebel, R., How to Help Your Kids Choose To Be Tobacco-Free, 1999, Distefan, J.M., Gilpin, E.A., Choi, W.S. & Pierce, J.P., 1998.