Why smoking bans don't help smokers kick the butt

A new study has revealed that bans don't help smokers quit smoking as rules governing enclosed public places don't inspire enough of them to smoke less behind their own closed doors or maybe even quit altogether.

ANI| Updated: Mar 04, 2015, 12:35 PM IST

Washington: A new study has revealed that bans don't help smokers quit smoking as rules governing enclosed public places don't inspire enough of them to smoke less behind their own closed doors or maybe even quit altogether.

The study at Concordia University found no significant change in home habits in the aftermath of a ban, but the measures could have an impact in more complex ways.

Researcher Sylvia Kairouz said that what distinguishes people who restrict smoking at home is the presence of a non-smoker, adding that the social network seems to be more of a factor than the law.

Kairouz added that the popular belief is that opening windows or doors to blow out smoke makes it okay, when that's not the case. People might be sensitive to the issues, but there was a lack of information about how the effects of second-hand smoke are transmitted.

Greater inspiration to kick the habit likely comes from having friends or family who set an example by giving up cigarettes themselves, but trends over the past decade suggest a much broader range of factors have reduced the number of nicotine addicts beyond simply forcing smokers to huddle outdoors more often.

Kairouz noted that there needs to be an integrated approach of ecological measures along with taxation, prevention and information, but one of the most important components is to have public health services available for people who are trying to quit.

The study is published in Nicotine and Tobacco Research.