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Gender Patterns and Smoking Susceptibility among Adolescents Who View Actors Smoking
Unformatted Document Text:  Actors and smoking susceptibility, p. 2 Gender Patterns and Smoking Susceptibility among Adolescents Who View Actors Smoking Introduction Smoking is a major health concern. Recent evidence shows that smoking continues to increase among adolescents in the United States (MMWR, 2000; 2001). Because 89% of smoking is initiated during adolescence (Johnston, O’Malley, & Bachman, 1996), and because smoking has devastating effects on the health and well- being of youth (An, O’Malley, Schulenberg, Bachman, & Johnston, 1999), it is important to identify factors that may stimulate pediatric smoking uptake as a part of the goal of finding means to reduce the prevalence of smoking overall. Presently, it is estimated that between 35-36% of the high school students in the U.S. smoke, an increase of 7 percentage points since 1991 (U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, 2002). Also, there is some evidence that smoking increases at an even higher rate among adolescent girls than among boys. The U.S. Center for Disease Control and Prevention (1997) indicated a 10 percentage point increase between 1991 and 1993 in smoking among female high school students nationwide (1997). An et al. (1999) also show that females now have one of the highest smoking prevalence rates of any group. Coupled with the increase in smoking among adolescents, and female adolescents in particular, is an increase in the portrayal of smoking in movies viewed by this population (Sargent, Tickle, Beach, Dalton, Ahrens & Heatherton, 2001). Researchers at Dartmouth College have even suggested that restricting children from viewing R-rated

Authors: Arpan, Laura., Heald, Gary. and Visser, Muriel.
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Actors and smoking susceptibility, p. 2
Gender Patterns and Smoking Susceptibility
among Adolescents Who View Actors Smoking
Introduction
Smoking is a major health concern. Recent evidence shows that smoking
continues to increase among adolescents in the United States (MMWR, 2000; 2001).
Because 89% of smoking is initiated during adolescence (Johnston, O’Malley, &
Bachman, 1996), and because smoking has devastating effects on the health and well-
being of youth (An, O’Malley, Schulenberg, Bachman, & Johnston, 1999), it is important
to identify factors that may stimulate pediatric smoking uptake as a part of the goal of
finding means to reduce the prevalence of smoking overall.
Presently, it is estimated that between 35-36% of the high school students in the
U.S. smoke, an increase of 7 percentage points since 1991 (U.S. Department of Health
and Human Services, 2002). Also, there is some evidence that smoking increases at an
even higher rate among adolescent girls than among boys. The U.S. Center for Disease
Control and Prevention (1997) indicated a 10 percentage point increase between 1991
and 1993 in smoking among female high school students nationwide (1997). An et al.
(1999) also show that females now have one of the highest smoking prevalence rates of
any group.
Coupled with the increase in smoking among adolescents, and female adolescents
in particular, is an increase in the portrayal of smoking in movies viewed by this
population (Sargent, Tickle, Beach, Dalton, Ahrens & Heatherton, 2001). Researchers at
Dartmouth College have even suggested that restricting children from viewing R-rated


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