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Smoke-Free Workplace, Non-Smoking Spouse Help Smokers Quit


A smoke-free workplace plays a key role in long-term success for young adults who quit smoking, according to Indiana University (IU) research.

The research found that environmental factors are more influential than individual behaviors and beliefs when it comes to quitting smoking. Therefore, a smoke-free workplace and even a non-smoking spouse helps young adults from age 18-25 to break the habit. The 27-year longitudinal study took place at the IU Bloomington’s Department of Psychological and Brain Sciences.

Jon Macy, project director of the IU Smoking Survey, said that tobacco dependence is like a chronic disease.

"Most smokers cycle through multiple periods of relapse and remission," said Macy.

Smoking cessation attempts often are thought as solitary endeavors, Macy said, but their findings point to possible benefits of cessation programs that involve couples because marriage to a non-smoker was such a strong predictor of long-term smoking abstinence.

Smoke-free workplaces, which are on the rise, were seen as a benefit in the study as well.

"Of all the factors we examined, the external environment has the largest independent effect, specifically being married to a non-smoker, and second, working in a completely smoke-free environment," said Macy.

The four factors that were considered were smoking-related beliefs, smoke-related behaviors and smoke in the social environment.

The findings wetr published in the American Journal of Public Health.

Address: Indiana University Smoking Survey, Psychology Department, 1101 East Tenth Street, Bloomington, IN 47405; (812) 855-2277, www.indiana.edu/~smokesvy.


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