Posted by: yourhealthradio | March 9, 2011

What is the “best” method to quit smoking?

We know that over 40 million Americans are addicted to nicotine and want to quit smoking.  Many programs and methods exist to help you… from patches to counseling to internet- but most have only a 10% chance of long-term success.

A new study, published in the Archives of Internal Medicine, looked at whether a web-based smoking cessation program, augmented with personal phone calls, would be improve over the internet program alone, for people who were trying to quit smoking.

The study found that 15% of people who used the combined program with the phone calls, quit smoking.  The web program is a proprietary program that would cost participants in real life $100, and an author of the study has a conflict of interest too, so we are not that enthusiastic.  We also do not expect it to work in real settings like it did in the study.  Further, participants received many more phone calls than typically occur in quitlines around the country.  So buyers be wary.  Also, smokers can call state quitlines around the U.S. at 1-800-quitnow and receive FREE counseling that works in real life as well as this proprietary product.

Aside from what any program may offer to smokers, smokers need social support from both family members and health professionals.  For most people, the best chance of success, one that approaches 30% cessation over the long term, are intensive support from trained tobacco treatments specialists along with individualized medication approaches.  For more information about treatment specialists on nicotine dependence, see www.ndp.unc.edu.


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