Teens who smoke cigarettes are five times more likely to drink alcohol and 13 times more likely to use marijuana than nonsmokers, according corona rehabilitation center to recent research. Teen smoking was linked to all sorts of substance abuse problems that often lead to health, legal and drug rehab outcomes.
Columbia University’s National Center on Addiction and Substance abuse found that most smokers begin smoking before age 18, and that smokers aged 12 to 17 are more likely drink alcohol than nonsmokers – 59 percent compared to 11 percent. Kids who are regular smokers by age 12 are more than three times more likely to report binge drinking than those who never smoked – 31 percent compared to 9 percent. Binge drinking is defined as having five drinks or more in a row. Heavy alcohol consumption and especially binge drinking are affecting more kids at a younger age than ever before, and drug rehab facilities for children and teens are a growing sector of the drug rehab landscape.
The Columbia University report found that smokers ages 12 to 17 are also more likely to meet the diagnostic definition for drug abuse or dependence than nonsmokers, at 26 percent compared to 2 percent – a huge difference that is carried forward into adulthood. The numbers of adult addicts in drug rehab programs who are also smokers far outnumber the nonsmokers, according to a report earlier this year.
The new report included the not-surprising news that marijuana is the most widely used illicit drug among teenagers, something we’re often hearing about in one report or another, including one just this week about hundreds of Canadian teenagers entering drug rehab, most of them for marijuana! And government data from 2005 shows that 7 percent of kids aged 12 to 17 use marijuana. Do you know how many kids that is? It’s millions! And of these millions of pot-smoking teens, cigarette smokers are 13 times more likely to use marijuana than those who do not smoke. Which implies that treatment such as drug detox and drug rehab is way more likely to be in the future of kids who smoke, compared to nonsmokers.
And finally, the younger a kid is when he or she starts smoking, the greater the risk to experiment with addictive and dangerous substances, the report said. Children who start smoking by age 12 are more than three times more likely to binge on alcohol, nearly 15 times more likely to smoke marijuana and almost seven times more likely to use other drugs such as heroin and cocaine.
Parents, and kids, do we have your attention? Sure, no one goes to drug rehab for smoking cigarettes – but maybe the kids should, if they’re unable to quit on their own. If there’s no drug rehab for smokers available, there are plenty of quit-smoking programs available through schools, hospitals, health care organizations, on-line services, or even a local doctor.