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Smoking Cessation and Adolescents

SmokingCessation and Adolescents

SmokingCessation and Adolescents

Smokingamong the youth has become a global health concern with anincreasingly huge number of adolescents using tobacco. The nicotinecomponent of the drug is addictive to the youth and quitting thehabit has become a challenge. This has led to quitting efforts beinginitiated by various agencies such as primary prevention and smokingcessation programs. There have been specific programs which areaimed at helping the youth to quit the habit such as replacementtherapies for bupropion and nicotine which includes the use of nasalspray and patches of nicotine. Other treatment modalities have alsobeen studied including varenicline. As much as these programs havebeen implemented for a long time, the long-term quitting rates havenot been optimal, but a reduction in the number of cigarettes hasbeen recorded. The paper looks at the various cessation programswhich can help the youth to quit their addictive habit of smoking.

Cessationprograms are meant at helping the affected individuals to quit anaddictive behavior. Smoking cessation programs in adolescents arequite varied, and the most applied techniques include counseling andpharmacotherapy. Pharmacotherapy is a technique that can be used frompatterns of smoking of adolescents and should be an individualizedprogram (Karpinski &amp Lubsch, 2016). At the same time, thereshould be a smoking cessation program for the parents if they arealso having problems with the same habit. Pharmacotherapy as aprogram should be done in conjunction with other interventions whichare behavioral and psychosocial. Before the start of a cessationprogram, there should be considerations including the preference ofthe patient to a specific type of therapy whether bupropion ornicotine replacement therapy. If a specific nicotine therapy programhas been determined, then the dose should also be individualized bythe smoking patterns of the patient.

Adolescentswho are suffering from concomitant depression can also undergobupropion cessation program due to the antidepressant properties ofthe drug used in the technique. Any patient who has AttentionDeficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD) can also be placed on the sameform of cessation program as bupropion can have positive effects onthe symptoms of the disorder (Karpinski &amp Lubsch, 2016). Thereshould be a proper care and monitoring of adolescents who areundergoing antidepressant therapy due to concerns revolving aroundsuicide ideals. It should be noted that bupropion cessation programshould not be used on adolescents who have eating or seizuredisorders. The use of varenicline in adolescents should be wellavoided until its efficacy is determined and safety data are madeavailable.

Cessationprograms should be followed by a recurrent and regular assessment ofthe status of smoking. Other interventions should include encouragingthe patient to stick to the cessation program and other counselingand behavioral changes which are recommended by the physician. Thereshould be an emphasis on supporting the smoking cessation program byparents who smoke as this is an important aspect of the recoveryprogress of the patient. Pharmacists are always in a better positionto assist the parents to stop smoking (Karpinski &amp Lubsch, 2016).Any practitioner who recommends nicotine replacement therapy shouldbe aware of the barriers to the process in the adolescent population.The practitioner should take the necessary steps to ensure that thepatient has access to a written prescription as well as collaboratewith the local pharmacists. At the same time, the health practitionershould be aware that there is a potential for abuse of the therapy.

Pharmacistsplay a significant role in ensuring the success of a smokingcessation program for adolescents. This can be done through variousmethods such as supervision via prescription. The pharmacists areessential in ensuring the assessment of the readiness of the patientto quit and also get an understanding of the appropriate way to applythe various therapies and techniques available. The physician is alsoimportant in helping with the timing of procedures of the therapies,proper selection of dose as well as the management of the sideeffects of the program (Scherphof, Eijnden, Engels, &amp Vollebergh,2014). The physician also helps in the provision of psychologicalsupport and also counseling of the patients concerning the risksassociated with the program. In bupropion therapy, the physician isalso responsible for selecting the appropriate candidates for theprogram as well as monitoring the behavioral changes exhibited by thepatient while also optimizing the plan for quitting thehabit(Karpinski &amp Lubsch, 2016). The physicians also help inencouraging the involvement and support of the parents and peers.

Theprocess of identification of a support program that is aimed atadolescents can be done by focusing on consequences that are vitalfor their development including discoloration of teeth and nails,having a bad odor and breath or even perception of others. Focusingon these aspects can be a source of motivation to quit smoking (Shin,Lee, &amp Jeong, 2013). It is a fact that most adolescents have anegative attitude towards smoking as well as being aware of itseffects such as impaired judgment and majority of them do not wish tobe associated with the habit. Follow-up is an important aspect toensure the success of a smoking cessation attempt. The pharmacistshould always inquire about the status of the program and ensure thatit is on the right path to be considered a success and should also tobe on hand to help in motivation in case a relapse occurs whilemaking a reassessment of the therapeutic plan(Karpinski &amp Lubsch,2016). The pharmacist is also supposed to ensure that there is nomisuse of any therapeutic technique both for the smoking andnon-smoking adolescents.

Sinceadolescents can become addicted to the nicotine, the preventionstrategies of smoking should also be put in place. This includesbanning of selling cigarettes or any form of tobacco within areaswhere they can be accessed by youth and regularly assessing theirsmoking status. Other ways include encouraging communication andparents being a role model by not engaging in smoking. Othercessation initiatives are also available online and can be accessedby both parents and the agencies involved in starting cessationprograms. There can also be smoking restrictions that are placed athome or schools to reduce the number of adolescents who would wish tosmoke in such locations. Even though smoking is an addictive habit,it is unlikely that an individual will indulge in the habit withoutinitiation (Scherphof, Eijnden, Engels, &amp Vollebergh, 2014). Ifthe youth are initiated into the habit, they can quickly becomeaddicted and become regular smokers with chances of quitting beingvery small. Consequently, it is important that free smoking-freezones are created to reduce the rate at which adolescents areinitiated into smoking. Having a smoke-free zone can be critical inhelping adolescents not to be influenced by smoking behaviors as wellas from the effects that are caused by the secondary smoke. At thesame time, the teachers should also act as role models for thestudents by promoting activities that dissuade the students fromengaging in smoking. A restriction at home and or in school is apublic health policy that protects both smokers and non-smokers.

Youthfocused smoking cessation initiatives should be accessible regardinggeographical aspects, for example, a school setting, so as to ensurethat there is maximum coverage. Any initiative or program thatrequires that the youth are not physically present is more preferredsuch as interventions based on mobile phones since they areindividualized, and there can be an exchange of interactiveinformation anywhere at any time (Shin, Lee, &amp Jeong, 2013). Suchprograms also promote confidentiality and can be more effective tothose that require direct contact with others. Besides, cessationprograms should also be cost-effective and affordable such as mobileor internet strategies since they are independent of the motivationof the smoker to quit and are mostly targeted to smokers from allsocio-economic backgrounds due to easy availability of electronicgadgets (Shin, Lee, &amp Jeong, 2013). At the same time, when theimplementation or delivery of the program is cost-effective, then alarge number of adolescent smokers are targeted. Other programs suchas physical activity can also be incorporated into the cessationinitiatives since they are cost-effective and can reach a widetarget.

Inconclusion, smoking has become a problem in adolescents, and a lot ofemphases should be placed on programs that can help them to quit. Anyspecific cessation program should be effective in ensuring that thepatient is fully treated from the addictive habit. An effectivecessation program should be followed by regular assessment of thestatus of smoking. Parents and guardians should also play animportant role in ensuring that they are the perfect role models toset a good precedence to the youth. Lastly, the physician also playsan important role in ensuring the success of a cessation program,since they make assessments of the readiness of the patient to quitsmoking as well as monitor behavioral changes that are observedduring the program.


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nicotinereplacement therapy for smoking cessation in adolescents: Arandomized controlled trial. JournalOf Substance Abuse Treatment,46(2),120-127. http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.jsat.2013.08.008

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