Our kids will inherit the world. Let’s make it a world without tobacco.

Imagine a future without tobacco. A world where everyone was safe from secondhand smoke. A place where Big Tobacco stopped preying on our kids. A planet where millions escaped death and disease.

That world begins now.

Talk to your kids about the dangers of tobacco. Teach them to fight peer pressure and deceptive tobacco marketing. As caring adults, we can give them the tools to make healthy choices. Tobacco won’t stop until kids never start.

Fact: 9 of 10 of smokers start by age 18. It’s never too early to talk to your kids.

The younger kids are when they start using tobacco, the more likely they are to become heavily addicted. Roughly one-third of youth smokers will die prematurely from smoking-related diseases.

Think your kids aren’t listening? Even if they don’t show it, research proves that your children are strongly influenced by your opinions and actions. More than anyone else, you play a crucial role in preventing youth from using tobacco. Here are some tips for starting the conversation:

Talk Early and Often.

Today, about 6,000 Oklahoma middle school students smoke, and tobacco products are evolving faster than ever. Vaping and e-cigarettes are now the most widely used tobacco products among kids. Hookah and smokeless tobacco are also popular alternatives. They’re all dangerous and addictive, so it’s never too early to talk about tobacco.

Help Your Child Learn to Say “No.”

Tweens and teens are uniquely vulnerable to tobacco marketing and peer pressure. As a parent, you can help your children learn to overcome these influences. Help them create a plan for how to say “no.”

Protect Their Health. And Yours.

Children of smokers are more likely to smoke. They are also more likely to become heavy smokers. Avoid using tobacco around your children or leaving tobacco where they can access it. Never smoke or vape indoors, and keep your kids away from places where they could be exposed to smoke. Even better? Get help quitting.

Get free help from the Oklahoma Tobacco Helpline.

If you or someone you know is thinking about quitting tobacco, learn about FREE services from the Oklahoma Tobacco Helpline. Free, nonjudgmental help is available. To learn more, visit OKhelpline.com or call 1-800-QUIT NOW.

Protect your kids from secondhand smoke. Wherever they roam in the world.

Our kids need our protection — at home and away. Start by making your car and home smokefree. Before your kids visit friends or relatives, check with a responsible adult to make sure they won’t be exposed to secondhand smoke. And of course, talk to your children. Help them make the smart choice and avoid secondhand smoke.