Are children more likely to smoke if their parents smoke?

If you have children, you probably want to set a good example for them. When asked, nearly all smokers say they don't want their children to smoke. But children whose parents smoke are more likely to start smoking themselves. You can become a good role model for them by quitting now.
Dr. Mehmet Oz, MD
Cardiology (Cardiovascular Disease)
It probably won't be a surprise to learn that children who grow up with smokers are more likely to become smokers themselves. A child is more likely to smoke if one parent is an active smoker -- and that likelihood rises if both parents smoke. Boys are more influenced by a smoking father, while girls are influenced by either a smoking mother or a smoking father. The younger and longer a child is exposed, the more likely they are to become smokers themselves. This is especially true if a child is exposed to a smoking parent before the age of 13. And if a mother smoked more than a pack a day during her pregnancy, there is an even higher chance that her baby will become dependent on nicotine if he or she starts to smoke.
Some of the factors associated with children smoking are having parents who smoke and having poor communication with their parents.
Irwin Isaacs
Yes, because children use their parents as behavioral role models in many ways.
Robert S. Kaufmann, MD
Internal Medicine
Yes because they are around tobacco and also they are getting a lot of secondhand smoke which certainly isn't of benefit.  People emulate their parents and unfortunately if they smoke they are more likely to smoke also.  Also they are exposed to second hand smoke which leads to addiction.
Dr. Michael Roizen, MD
Internal Medicine
Yes.  Children are about 4 times more likely to smoke if their parents smoke.
Joseph I. Miller Jr., MD
Thoracic Surgery (Cardiothoracic Vascular)
Children are greatly influenced by their environment.  If they see an adult they admire smoking they are much more likely to pick up the habit.  They view it as something cool, grown up, or even expected.

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Quit Smoking

Smoking tobacco products can lead to severe health problems and even death. While quitting smoking can be very difficult for some smokers, there are smoking cessation programs and medications that can help smokers quit. There are ...

many lifelong benefits of doing so, like increased lung function and decreased risk of heart disease and cancer. Understanding the importance of quitting smoking and all options available to help stop smoking is key to long-term success.

Important: This content reflects information from various individuals and organizations and may offer alternative or opposing points of view. It should not be used for medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. As always, you should consult with your healthcare provider about your specific health needs.