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Alcohol, Drugs, and Smoking

Do ads for things such as alcohol or marijuana affect kids?

Alcohol advertising absolutely plays a role in underage drinking. While booze ads are restricted on kid-targeted TV shows, kids get an eyeful during other programming -- for example, sports broadcasts, billboards, and reality shows that glorify drinking, such as The Bachelor. In fact, according to one study, kids as young as 11 see ads for alcohol on a daily basis

As for pot marketing, we're currently in the calm before the storm. The legality of marijuana advertising is still being worked out for the states in which pot is legal, but anti-drug advocates such as the Partnership for Drug-Free Kids warn that pot marketing soon will flood the airwaves. And though it's not technically marketing, the videos of celebrities toking up online contribute to a culture of tolerance.

It's tough enough raising kids to resist underage drinking when alcohol advertising makes booze look like so much fun. Parents will probably have a tougher time battling the influence of pot marketing, partly due to the growing acceptance of marijuana use.

Here's how to talk to your kids about alcohol and marijuana marketing.

Impart your values. Teens are still listening to their parents, despite much evidence to the contrary. Discuss what's important to you: good character, solid judgment, and belief in a bright future -- all of which are compromised by pot and alcohol use.

Explain the health consequences. Study after study indicates that pot negatively affects a teen's developing brain and that drinking has plenty of health risks.

Encourage waiting. For some kids, forbidding might backfire, so focus on preventing them from starting to drink or smoke in the first place, delaying it as long as possible.

Look for warning signs. Studies show that drinking and smoking often are associated with other issues -- for example, social exclusion, school problems, and emotional instability. Keep on the lookout for things that might be affecting your kid in other areas of his or her life.

Pull back the curtain on alcohol and pot marketing. Kids and teens don't like to be tricked, and advertising is full of sneaky ways to get people to buy a product. Instead of lecturing, help your kids break down the ads to see how they try to influence emotions, choices, and behavior.

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Adult written by Sadman

It's getting really bad in Canada with the legalization of weed coming up. There are ads running on websites that cannot even be dismissed promoting how great marijuana is, and a recent major exhibition had a display by one company promoting young people to take up the habit. The pot industry is spending billions - they're not going to just want current pot smokers, they're going to want to expand their market. It's awful and it makes me ashamed to be a Canadian. I can only feel sorry for the parents. Keep your kids away from comments sections on news sites where you actually have people putting forward the lie that it's good for you. One good way to maybe get the point across to kids is put them in a room with a skunk or one where one has sprayed recently and ask them if they like that smell, because that's what pot smokers smell like to non-pot smokers, and for quite a while afterwards, too.
Teen, 14 years old written by Common sense LST

in my opinion, if you haven't taught them, then it will affect them. if they see there favorite celebrities promoting those products, or watch media with a lot of drug use, then it will affect them. just try to talk to your kid(s) about the realities and consequences of these drugs, and they will be fine.