Mumbai: Over 20 percent of the youth in Mumbai start smoking by the age of 20 years while 65 percent pick up the habit in the later part of their graduation and post graduation, said a survey.
According to the survey, 23 percent of the students picked up smoking, considering it a means of enjoyment while 59 percent smoked just to show off.
"It is just to receive some female attention and looking cool and mature, while a few felt an adrenaline rush breaking the rules. An average amount spent on cigarettes was approximately Rs 100-200 per month of pocket money. Exceptional students smoke spent more than Rs.300," said the survey conducted by prominent Wockhardt hospital.
The survey, conducted as part of the World No Tobacco Day, was conducted among the age group of 17-24 years.
"Smoking raises the blood pressure and puts stress on the heart. It increases the cholesterol level and increases unhealthy fats in the blood stream thus resulting in blockages in the arteries giving rise to heart diseases. So, when a person starts smoking from a very young age, there is a likelihood of that person getting heart diseases," said Ajit Menon, an interventional cardiologist at Wockhardt Hospitals.
According to the survey, children whose parents or someone in the family smoke are around three times likely to smoke than children living in non-smoking households.
"Parents play an important role and do have the biggest impact on their children’s decision to smoke. The best way to prevent a youngster from smoking is to have a set of parents who do not smoke. Statistics reveal that 26 percent students claim that either one of the family member smokes, although 62 percent revealed that no one in the household smokes," said the survey.