Smokers are motivated to quit, even if they don't use the arsenal of treatments and services that could help them break the habit, according to a report issued Thursday.
A week before The Great American Smokeout on Nov. 17, an annual event to encourage Americans to quit smoking, U.S. health experts reported that despite 70 percent of smokers reporting wanting to quit, one in five Americans still smoke.
The majority of wannabe quitters didn't use counseling and medications - about a third of surveyed smokers (30 percent) used smoking-cessation medications in the last year and a paltry 5.9 percent used counseling, according to the report, issued in Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Report Thursday by researchers from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.
More than two thirds of smokers want to quit smoking and more than half tried to quit last year, CDC Director Thomas R. Frieden, said in a statement. Smokers who try to quit can double or triple their chances by getting counseling, medicine, or both. Other measures of increasing the likelihood that smokers will quit as they want to include hard-hitting media campaigns, 100 percent smoke-free policies, and higher tobacco prices.
From 2001-2010, attempts to quit increased in smokers aged 25--64 years, but not among other age groups, the report found.
The study surveyed 27,157 residents aged 18 or older.
Quitting smoking is the best thing smokers can do for their health and the health of their families, Tim McAfee, director of CDC's Office on Smoking and Health, said. We know that quitting can be challenging, but more than half of Americans who ever smoked have quit and you can too. Talk to your health care provider and call 1-800-QUIT-NOW for free help.