To perpetuate tobacco addiction, cigarette manufacturers have also boosted the amount of nicotine in tobacco and modified cigarette designs to increase the number of puffs per cigarette. Harvard School of Public Health researchers found that the amount of nicotine that smokers typically consumed per cigarette, regardless of brand, rose by an average of 1.6 percent per year between 1998 and 2005 across all the major cigarette market categories mentholated, non-mentholated, full-flavor, light, ultra-light, etc. This is an increase of 11 percent in the amount of nicotine per cigarette over a seven-year period. The higher drug levels make it harder for smokers to quit.
Tobacco companies have encouraged habitual use of tobacco by including coupons, such as Cash coupon, that can be collected and redeemed for merchandise. Although advertising by tobacco companies has been curtailed on television, there is sufficient promotion in other types of media to hook the next generation of users. The tobacco industry and the attorneys general of 46 states agreed to ban the use of cartoon characters in tobacco advertising in 1998 because of the appeal of cartoons to minors. In 2006, a U.S. District Judge ruled that tobacco companies violated racketeering laws by deceiving the public about the health hazards of smoking, and ordered the companies to stop using deceptive labels with the terms "light", "ultra-light", "low tar", or "mild".
Here are some reasons why people use tobacco:
- On a dare to show that you are not timid or afraid.
- To fit with the crowd as they say all my friends do it.
- To appear sophisticated or cool
- To be grown-up
- To assert their independence
- As a sign of protest, rebellion, or to defy authority
- Free samples from friends or advertisers
- Influences from people they respect and admire
- Parents or relatives smoked
- Some famous players who use chewing tobacco
- Images of famous actors, movie stars, or role models
- Portrayals by cigarette advertisements
- To try to lose weight To calm their nerves
- As a kind of "air freshener" when using the toilet
Peers may persuade teenagers and even younger children to try tobacco. Even if they do not try verbally to influence another person, simply using tobacco around young people can motivate them to mimic the behavior. Because they want to fit in, or seem more mature than they really are, they try using tobacco. When teenagers or younger people first begin using tobacco, it is easy to limit usage. They may only use it during parties or when around friends who use tobacco. They may believe that tobacco is not addictive for them and that they can continue to control their use indefinitely. But nicotine is addictive, and eventually they will likely become addicted as well.