Drawing by Salim Benjelloun in the Anti-Smoking Poster Contest
Smoking Kills: Don’t Start by Samia Arihane in Intermediate 5
Nowadays, teenagers are becoming ad- dicted to smoking earlier and earlier. Ac- cording the Moroccan Association for the Fight Against Smoking and Drugs, about 48% of young people between 15 and 19 years old smoke, which is about 1.5 mil- lion young people. This survey shows that smoking has become problematic among teenagers. According to the same survey, 13% of smokers in Morocco are teenag- ers under 15, which is about half a million young people in Morocco.
First of all, almost all teenagers get addicted due to family problems, which means that when the child turns to smok- ing as a way of forgetting his problems. Second, some teenagers become addicted to cigarettes simply because they are emu- lating their friends, and if they didn’t do the same, they would be excluded from the group. Other reasons are boredom, that is, they have nothing to do, and also the ab- sence of their parents due to work.
The problem is that the majority of children who smoke don’t know that they are destroying their health. One cigarette contains more than 255 toxic substances. A report issued by the Moroccan Ministry of Health revealed that 15% of students whose average age is 14 are facing health problems due to smoking.
The increase in smoking is not only as- sociated with boys, but it has become the fashion among girls, too! Some surveys stated that girls smoke at least the same amount as boys. In fact, girls may want to express that they are liberal and free with this act, that they can do what they want, and that no one has the right to interfere in their lives; but, in fact, those ideas might have seemed true in the 1950s or 1960s, but not any longer.
As a conclusion, by smoking, you not only harm your own health, but the health of the people around you, through what we call secondhand smoke. So, please stop hurting yourself and the people around you for the sake of building a healthy society. As the proverb says, “the mind which is good is due to the health of the body.”
Click here to read the rest of the edition of this month Deccember 2015 Student Voice