Keeping children on
a safe path
Wondering how to keep children from starting to drink or smoke? Start young — preferably before your child experiments with either one — to build a sturdy foundation.
• Talk to a school guidance counselor or your child’s doctor about free, helpful programs for parents on guiding healthy behaviors.
• Brainstorm with your child about ways to say no to risky behavior. Aim for a full scale of options between “No, thanks” and “Stop asking — I said no.”
• Discuss good reasons not to drink or smoke. Ask children what they think and share your beliefs and values. Talk honestly about relatives who had health problems or died due to tobacco or alcohol addictions. Problems like bad breath, yellow teeth and embarrassing behavior may be persuasive, too.
• Set expectations for healthy behaviors. Use simple rewards and consequences to encourage good behavior.
• Set an example. If necessary, try to quit smoking or drinking too much.
• Keep lines of communication open. Check in regularly about how the day went. Ask about plans, friends and activities.
• Call your child’s doctor or guidance counselor for more help if you think your child is smoking or drinking.
Head and neck cancer – although not well known – strikes around 40,000 people each year. More
Although the incidence rates of oral cancer are comparable in black and white men, the death rates are more than 70 percent higher in blacks than whites.
Source: Surveillance Epidemiology and End Results Program
National Cancer Institute More
She became very quiet, almost bewildered, as the doctor described how the disease had invaded her gums, the roof of her mouth and sinuses. It even crept into the base of her skull where countless delicate nerves and blood vessels travel to the brain. More
Effective treatments require early diagnosis
Willia Goins, 70, now speaks in a whisper.
She had her larynx, or voice box, removed about 14 years ago, and the whisper is as loud as it gets. Goins might speak quietly, but her message comes through loud and clear. More
Tobacco and alcohol: A dangerous combination
What is head and neck cancer?
Cancer cells have glitches that keep them alive long past their normal lifespan. The rogue cells multiply again and again, snowballing into a tumor. Over time, they invade nearby tissue, crowding out normal cells. More
Oral Cancer: What African American Men Need to Know