Study: Smoking bans: Influence on smoking prevalence

Smoke-free homes and workplaces are associated with smokers' quitting or
cutting their cigarette consumption, a new Canadian study has found.

The study, titled "Smoking bans: Influence on smoking prevalence," published
today in Health Reports, found that in the past decade, smokers living in newly
smoke-free homes or workplaces were more likely to quit over the next two years
than smokers with no restrictions at home or at work.

Using data from the Canadian Tobacco Use Monitoring Survey and the National
Population Health Survey, the study examined links between smoking restrictions
and rates of smoking cessation and cigarette consumption.

Among smokers living in homes that became "smoke-free" during the survey
period, 20% had quit two years later. This compares with 13% of smokers living
in homes that were not smoke-free.

Similarly, 27% of smokers who initially reported no restrictions at work, but
who two years later reported a complete ban, had quit. This is more than double
the 13% among those who continued to face no restrictions at work.

Findings suggest that for smokers wanting to quit, restrictions may tip the
balance towards action.

The study distinguished between earlier stages of quitting (including a desire
to quit, but no action taken) and later stages (actually quitting and
maintenance). In homes with no restrictions, 70% of smokers and former smokers
either had no plans to quit or wished to do so but had taken no action. This
was the case for just 44% of smokers and former smokers in smoke-free homes.

As well, in smoke-free homes, 42% had either quit recently or were former
smokers who were maintaining that status. The comparable figure in homes with
no restrictions was 15%.

Similarly, in workplaces where smoking was completely banned, 33% of the
combined group of smokers and former smokers had quit, compared with 22% of
those who reported no restrictions at work.

More information

AplusA-online.de - Source: European Agency for Safety and Health at Work