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Photos: New Smoking Prevention Program Launched in Schools
Date:4/9/2008

Teens get firsthand look at addiction, peer pressure

EAU CLAIRE, Wis., April 9, 2008 /PRNewswire/ -- Despite the known health risks, people still use tobacco products and struggle with addiction and tobacco-related diseases. Reaching young people before they start smoking is key to saving lives.

To view the Multimedia News Release, go to: http://www.prnewswire.com/mnr/realityworks/32615/

The new ySTART(TM) Addiction Education Program from Realityworks gives young people an experience with tobacco addiction using handheld technology. The PreventPak(TM) Addiction Simulator employs behavior modification principles to help teens practice refusal skills in a true-to-life peer pressure situation. A two-day simulation is paired with an engaging curriculum-designed to meet the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention's guidelines for health education programs to prevent tobacco use and addiction. Upon completion of the simulation, reports are generated that measure each participant's performance. The goal of the ySTART Program is to influence healthy behaviors in young people before tobacco robs their power to resist.

Results from a nationwide effectiveness study show that students who participated in the ySTART(TM) Program improved substantially more in attitude, beliefs, knowledge, smoking intentions and levels of self-control concerning a smoking addiction than teens who experienced their school's tobacco education curriculum alone. ySTART was field-tested in middle school classrooms across the nation and is currently utilized in five states.

According to researcher Min Qi Wang, Ph.D., University of Maryland, "Results show that the ySTART(TM) Program is an effective educational tool in influencing middle school students' attitudes toward smoking."

ySTART(TM) is a collaboration between an award-winning U.S. health teacher and
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SOURCE Realityworks, Inc.
Copyright©2008 PR Newswire.
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