Cigarette smoking is widespread all over the world. In the United States, 33% of male adults and 28% of female adults smoke. In the Republic of China, the smoking rate among males is about the same as in the United States while much fewer Chinese females smoke. The health damages due to cigarette smoking increase if people smoke from a young age. Moreover, young smokers will most possibly become lifetime smokers.
Cigarette smoking can result in cancers, chronic obstructive lung diseases, cardiovascular diseases, and other diseases. The overall mortality of male smokers is about 70% higher than that of male nonsmokers. However, cigarette smoking is behavior and may be preventable. This deviant behavior results from the interaction of the perceived environment system and the personality system.
To prevent this behavior, it is necessary to understand thoroughly certain variables. These variables can be classified into five categories: sociodemographic factors, social factors, psychosocial factors, personality factors, and biological factors. Moreover, these variables dynamically interact with each other at different stages of one’s cigarette smoking career and at different ages for those young people who smoke. The opening of the market to foreign cigarette manufacturers might be a significant factor in a higher prevalence of cigarette smoking.
The majority of the smokers smoked out of curiosity. Peer conformity was not as strong a reason to smoke as it was in the United States and other Western societies. There are significant differences among three groups of adolescents in terms of their genders, fathers’ educational level, parental smoking status and reactions to these young people’s smoking practice, their academic and sports performances, academic standing in the class, educational goals, smoking intentions in the future, perceived smoking prevalence rates of close friends and teachers, ranking in family among siblings, relationship with friends and family members, and their own reactions to the warning label on the cigarette packages.