MEDIA RELEASES

ASH Survey - Northland Youth supporting Smokefree 2025

One of the goals for a Smokefree New Zealand by 2025 is to reduce smoking prevalence to 5% and it seems our Northland Year 10 students are already under that threshold.

The latest Action on Smoking and Health (ASH) Year 10 Snapshot survey on smoking shows that 4.1% of all Year 10 students nationally are daily smokers, while in Northland 4.6% of Year 10 student’s smoke daily.

14 schools from Northland participated in the ASH Year 10 survey in 2012, a total of 848 Northland students aged 14-15 years old.

Sadly parental smoking and smoking in the home and car continues and is always of concern because teenagers with parents who smoke or are exposed to smoking in the home are more likely to smoke.

Nationally while there were no statistically significant changes in smoking prevalence, or never smoking in Northland we continue to see a decrease.

Our smoking prevalence, regular smoking continues to decrease from 8.2% in 2011 to 7.7% in 2012, and our never smoked continues to make small positive increases, 63% in 2012 compared to 61.4% in 2011.

Pop culture, social media, TV and movies also play a major role in youth smoking rates. Even though advertising is banned in New Zealand, our youth are still exposed to tobacco product placement in overseas produced movies and television shows.

“Even our New Zealand made TV programmes and movies still depict smoking,” says Bridget Rowse, Smokefree Advisor Northland District Health Board. “We see photos of our favourite celebrities smoking in magazines.”

Reducing smoking requires a multi-pronged approach, by denormalising tobacco, creating more Smokefree environments, by making tobacco less appealing. by increasing the price and introducing plain packaging for cigarettes.

The biggest drops in youth smoking rates were in 2000 and 2010, when the government introduced significant tobacco tax increases.

Results of an international study released last year showed plain packaging reduced the appeal of smoking for youth and young adults.

Quit smoking services and cessation products are available to youth as young as 11 years of age from your local Smoking Cessation Practitioner.

To get help to stop smoking, talk to your local health provider, Aukati Kai Paipa quit coach www.aukatikaipaipa.co.nz or call Quitline on 0800 778 778.


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