Unplanned quit attempts more likely to succeed

January 26, 2006

Unplanned attempts to stop smoking are more likely to succeed than planned ones, concludes a study published online by the BMJ today.

The process of stopping smoking has been thought to involve a series of stages, going from thinking about stopping, through planning an attempt, to actually making the attempt. Such planning is widely thought to be important for success.

Over 1,900 smokers and ex-smokers in England were interviewed about their attempts to quit, whether their most recent quit attempt was planned in advance, and whether quit attempts made at least six month's before had been successful.

Almost half of attempts to stop smoking involved no previous planning and, surprisingly, unplanned quit attempts were more likely to succeed, even after adjusting for age, sex, and socioeconomic group.

These findings do not necessarily imply that planning quit attempts is counterproductive, say the authors. Indeed, use of behavioural support and nicotine replacement therapy are known to improve the chances of success even though they generally require planning ahead.

More likely, whether a quit attempt is planned or unplanned reveals something about the state of mind of the smoker at the time, which has importance for whether the attempt will last.

They propose a theory in which smokers have varying levels of motivational "tension" to stop and then "triggers" in the environment lead to a sudden renunciation of smoking. This concept has been incorporated in a general theory of motivation and its application to addictive behaviours.

They suggest that public health campaigns should perhaps focus on what might be called the "3 Ts": creating motivational tension, triggering action in smokers who are on the cusp of a change in their orientation to smoking, and immediate availability of treatment such as nicotine patches and counselling to support those attempts.
-end-


BMJ

Related Smoking Articles from Brightsurf:

Smoking rates falling in adults, but stroke survivors' smoking rates remain steady
While the rate of Americans who smoke tobacco has fallen steadily over the last two decades, the rate of stroke survivors who smoke has not changed significantly.

What is your risk from smoking? Your network knows!
A new study from researchers at Penn's Annenberg School for Communication found that most people, smokers and non-smokers alike, were nowhere near accurate in their answers to questions about smoking's health effects.

Want to quit smoking? Partner up
Kicking the habit works best in pairs. That's the main message of a study presented today at EuroPrevent 2019, a scientific congress of the European Society of Cardiology (ESC).

Smoking and mortality in Asia
In this analysis of data from 20 studies conducted in China, Japan, South Korea, Singapore, Taiwan and India with more than 1 million participants, deaths associated with smoking continued to increase among men in Asia grouped by the years in which they were born.

Predictors of successfully quitting smoking among smokers registered at the quit smoking clinic at a public hospital in northeastern Malaysia
In the current issue of Family Medicine and Community Health, Nur Izzati Mohammad et al. consider how cigarette smoking is one of the risk factors leading to noncommunicable diseases such as cardiovascular and respiratory system diseases and cancer.

Restaurant and bar smoking bans do reduce smoking, especially among the highly educated
Smoking risk drops significantly in college graduates when they live near areas that have completely banned smoking in bars and restaurants, according to a new study in the American Journal of Epidemiology.

How the UK smoking ban increased wellbeing
Married women with children reported the largest increase in well-being following the smoking bans in the UK in 2006 and 2007 but there was no comparable increase for married men with children.

Smoking study personalizes treatment
A simple blood test is allowing Vanderbilt University Medical Center (VUMC) researchers to determine which patients should be prescribed varenicline (Chantix) to stop smoking and which patients could do just as well, and avoid side effects, by using a nicotine patch.

A biophysical smoking gun
While much about Alzheimer's disease remains a mystery, scientists do know that part of the disease's progression involves a normal protein called tau, aggregating to form ropelike inclusions within brain cells that eventually strangle the neurons.

A case where smoking helped
A mutation in the hemoglobin of a young woman in Germany was found to cause her mild anemia.

Read More: Smoking News and Smoking Current Events
Brightsurf.com is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to Amazon.com.