Take the pledge to vote

For a better tommorow#AajSawaroApnaKal
  • I agree to receive emails from News18

  • I promise to vote in this year's elections no matter what the odds are.
  • Please check above checkbox.


Thank you for
taking the pledge

Vote responsibly as each vote counts
and makes a diffrence


Issued in public interest by HDFC Life. HDFC Life Insurance Company Limited (Formerly HDFC Standard Life Insurance Company Limited) (“HDFC Life”). CIN: L65110MH2000PLC128245, IRDAI Reg. No. 101 . The name/letters "HDFC" in the name/logo of the company belongs to Housing Development Finance Corporation Limited ("HDFC Limited") and is used by HDFC Life under an agreement entered into with HDFC Limited. ARN EU/04/19/13618
LIVE TV DownloadNews18 App
News18 English

Peer Influence Doubles Smoking Risk For Teens

The researchers found that having friends who smoke doubles the risk that children aged 10 to 19 will start to smoke.

AFP Relaxnews

Updated:August 24, 2017, 1:08 PM IST
Peer Influence Doubles Smoking Risk For Teens
The researchers found that having friends who smoke doubles the risk that children aged 10 to 19 will start to smoke.

New research has found that having peers who smoke doubles the risk that non-smoking teenagers will also pick up the habit.

Led by Jiaying Liu, PhD, a recent graduate from the University of Pennsylvania, the meta-analysis included 75 smoking studies covering data from 16 different countries.

The study included data from both collectivistic cultures like China, South Korea, Jordan and Portugal, and individualistic cultures like the United States, Australia, Canada, the Netherlands and the United Kingdom.

Although previous research has looked at the influence of peers on teenage smoking habits, results have varied regarding how peer influence works and how big a risk it is.

"Meta-analysis is a summary of all we know," explained the study's senior author, Dolores Albarracín, "giving us a more reliable, robust number that is better supported by the facts."

The team found that having friends who smoke doubles the risk that children aged 10 to 19 will start to smoke, and continue smoking.

The results showed that peer influence is more powerful in collectivist cultures than individualist, with teens in collectivist cultures 4.3 times more likely to start smoking if they have smoker peers, in contrast to teens in individualistic countries who are 1.89 times more likely to take up the habit if their peers smoke.

The findings suggested that the ethnic origins of the teenagers also played a role, regardless of their nationality. Liu commented that "We found that peer influence was much weaker in samples with higher proportions of adolescents with a European background, but much stronger in samples with higher proportions of adolescents with an Asian background."

Closer friends had a bigger impact on whether teens started smoking than more distant friends. However, this didn't affect whether adolescents continued to smoke, suggesting that the addictive qualities of tobacco are a bigger factor than peer influence.

By including only longitudinal studies the team was able to determine that it is peer influence that leads to an increased chance of teens smoking, rather teens who smoke being more likely to become friends.

The team now hope that their findings will provide better insight into the risk factors behind teenage smoking and how the habit can be prevented in this age group.

"It's not enough just to say, 'Don't smoke it's bad for you,'" said Albarracín. "How are teenagers going to deal with temptation on a daily basis? We need much more specific campaigns dealing with normative influence-for example, pointing out how many adolescents don't smoke. There can be more messaging in schools and training for parents on how to build refusal skills in their children."

The findings were published in Psychological Bulletin.

Get the best of News18 delivered to your inbox - subscribe to News18 Daybreak. Follow News18.com on Twitter, Instagram, Facebook, TikTok and on YouTube, and stay in the know with what's happening in the world around you – in real time.

Subscribe to Moneycontrol Pro and gain access to curated markets data, trading recommendations, equity analysis, investment ideas, insights from market gurus and much more. Get Moneycontrol PRO for 1 year at price of 3 months. Use code FREEDOM.

| Edited by: Manila Venugopal
Read full article
Next Story
Next Story

Also Watch


Live TV

Countdown To Elections Results
To Assembly Elections 2018 Results