Smoking Among Youth: Health Promotion Plan

Topic: Public Health
Words: 950 Pages: 3


The most common preventable cause of death in the world is tobacco use. Most often, people start smoking at school age, and then this habit can remain for life. 5.6 million Americans younger than 18 may die early from a smoking-related illness if smoking continues at the current rate among youth (Wang et al., 2018). For these reasons, health promotion among students is key to reducing smoking prevalence and its negative health consequences.

Tobacco Use Among Youth

The focus of this health promotion plan is smoking among youth. This topic was chosen because the smoking habit often appears at a young age and persists for a long time, bringing severe consequences for the health of the individual and society. Smokers have a significantly higher chance of myocardial infarction and a 2–3 times higher risk of dying from coronary heart disease than never smokers (Kalkhoran et al., 2018). Smoking increases the risk of peripheral arterial disease, abdominal aortic aneurysms, ventricular arrhythmia, and heart failure by 2-3 times. Since the habit of tobacco use often starts at a young age, the community of this health promotion plan is the students of a particular American high school in age 14-18 of any race, ethnicity, and gender. To set agreed-upon health goals, a meeting was held with four high school students aged 17 years old who use tobacco. We decided together that by the end of the educational session, they will be able to stop using tobacco or reduce the amount of tobacco use by three times compared to the beginning of the school year, which represents an average of 6 cigarettes a day, or 410 seconds of e-cigarette smoking. The health promotion plan for this group is to reduce the risk of heart disease, stroke, lung diseases, and many types of cancer by rejecting tobacco use.

Causes of Predisposition of Tobacco Use

To develop an effective health promotion plan, it is necessary to understand the causes of smoking among young people. They include the fact that people are especially acutely experiencing personal problems in relationships with peers and family at a young age. The anxiety and stress generated by these factors can lead to the initiation of tobacco use. Influencer exposure has also become a critical factor in the last few years. If an influencer, blogger, or social media celebrity popular in a particular school uses tobacco products, there is a big chance they will follow suit. Other factors that trigger the initiation of tobacco use are the desire to try new things, unformed personal boundaries, the inability to refuse, and the desire to belong to a particular group (Dobbie et al., 2019). All these reasons make children aged 14-18 predisposed to tobacco use.

Suggestions for Health Promotion Plan

Knowing the importance of the problem, its causes, and its target audience make it possible to create an effective health promotion plan. The purpose of these activities is to help students learn practical techniques to increase relaxation and reduce stress levels. Stress management may be an alternative to tobacco use to reduce anxiety due to high workload and family and peer relationships.

The second proposal is to lead classes to inform about the consequences of tobacco use. Of course, young people know that smoking is harmful to health, but not everyone knows the severity of the consequences of smoking. For example, a common excuse is that a student smokes very little. They think one or two cigarettes will not harm their health, but the relationship between smoking and cardiovascular disease is not linear. Smoking just one cigarette a day causes an increased risk of stroke. It is essential to explain to students that there is no safe level of tobacco consumption. Also, in the past few years, tobacco use in the form of cigarillos, pipes, hookahs, smokeless tobacco, and e-cigarettes has become more common. Especially e-cigarettes and “heat without burning,” which marketers call an alternative to tobacco products, the purpose of which is to reduce the health risks from cigarettes by eliminating the burning of tobacco to produce smoke (Kalkhoran et al., 2018). But they also contain tobacco and nicotine salt, which is still dangerous.

The third sentence is designed to visually demonstrate to students the consequences of using tobacco. There are special devices that mimic the lungs when using tobacco. A cigarette or other smoking device is connected to the pump, forcing smoke through the cotton. As a result, tar, moisture, and other consequences of smoking remain on the cotton. If such flasks are installed at school, children will more clearly understand the dangers of tobacco use.

Goals of Health Promotion Plan

This health promotion plan aims to improve students’ health through dialogue, learning, and demonstration of impact. Stress management workshops will not only help reduce tobacco use but also help with other health hazards caused by stress. The purpose of the training is to explain the dangers of both traditional smoking and alternative forms of tobacco use. Visual demonstration of the consequences is an interactive learning method and will be much more effective than standard flyers, posters, or infographics.


Health Promotion is especially important for such a group as high school students since, at this stage of life, they gain independence and form their habits, which will determine not only their health but also the health and well-being of the entire nation. And such a problem as tobacco use has severe consequences for any age group, especially for young people. Fortunately, this group has a downward trend in cigarette smoking. Still, a new problem in the form of e-cigarettes is on the rise, and it is now becoming key in the fight for a healthy future for the whole society.


Dobbie, F., Purves, R., McKell, J., Dougall, N., Campbell, R., White, J., & Bauld, L. (2019). Implementation of a peer-led school-based smoking prevention programme: A mixed methods process evaluation. BMC Public Health, 19(1), 1-9.

Dungog, J., Tamanal, M. & Kim, H. (2021). The assessment of lifestyle status among high school and college students. Journal of Lifestyle Medicine, 11(2), 57-65.

Healthy People 2030. (2018). Reduce current cigarette smoking in adolescents. U.S. department of health and human services. Web.

Kalkhoran, S., Benowitz, N. L., & Rigotti, N. A. (2018). Prevention and treatment of tobacco use: JACC health promotion series. Journal of the American College of Cardiology, 72(9), 1030-1045.

Wang, T., Gentzke, A., Sharapova, S., Cullen, A., Ambrose, K., & Jamal, A. (2018). Tobacco product use among middle and high school students. Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Report, 67(22), 629-633.

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