The Knox County Health Department’s Tobacco Use Prevention program is partnering with the Tennessee Department of Health to recognize Child Health Month (CHM) throughout October. The theme for CHM 2021 is Childhood Resilience: Nurturing Social, Emotional and Physical Health.


One of the main goals of the 2021 CHM is focusing on the whole-child approach, which includes tobacco use prevention among Knox County youth. Use of tobacco products among children and adolescents in any form is unsafe, regardless of whether it is smokable, smokeless, or electronic, according to the CDC. If smoking continues at current rates, 5.6 million, or 1 out of every 13, of today’s children will die prematurely from a smoking-related illness.


The Knox County Health Department’s Tobacco Use Prevention and Control Program works to address three areas: Smoking Cessation (quitting) During Pregnancy, Reduction of Secondhand Smoke Exposure for Infants and Youth and Prevention of Youth Tobacco Use.


“Research has shown that the most effective way to control tobacco use with children is by talking about it with a trusted adult, such as an older sibling, parent, guardian, teacher, coach or doctor,” said Michael Thomas, program manager with KCHD. “That’s why we encourage everyone who has children or works with children to use this month as a kick start to discuss the pressure and glamorized image of tobacco from peers and movies and utilize this month to set goals to be tobacco-free. Having the support of a stable, committed adult can help foster childhood resiliency.”


Join KCHD in celebrating Child Health Month! Visit to find programs and resources to help be smoke-free.