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In the next 24 hours 1180 Americans will die from tobacco use In all 430700 smokers die from tobacco related disease each year They are replaced in part by the 3000 children who start smoking regularly everyday Each day 3000 teens smoke their first cigarette Thats more than one million annually Approximately one-third of these children smokers will eventually die of smoking-related illnesses At least 4 million adolescents are current smokers Smoking is a pediatric disease The average teenage smoker starts smoking at age 125 and becomes a daily smoker by age 18 According to a 1997 national survey of high school students the overall prevalence of current cigarette use and frequent cigarette use were 364 percent and 167 percent respectively A 1997 survey reported that current cigar use among high school students was 22 percent In 1996 an estimated six million 14-19 year-olds 267 percent of people in this age group reported having smoked a cigar in the previous year Of these cigarette smokers as well as users of smokeless tobacco were more than three times as likely as non-tobacco users to report having smoked a cigar in the previous year People who begin smoking at an early age are more likely to develop severe levels of nicotine addiction than those who start at a later age Cigarette advertisements tend to emphasize youthful vigor sexual attraction and independence themes to purposely appeal to teenagers and young adults struggling with these issues Of adolescents who have smoked at least 100 cigarettes in their lifetime most of them report that they would like to quit but are not able to do so Peers siblings and friends are powerful influences The most common situation for first trying a cigarette is with a friend who already smokes A recent survey indicated that among students under 18 who were current smokers 667 percent reported never being asked for
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