Cancer and Tobacco Control

SA smokers want to quit

Many smokers in South Africa do not enjoy smoking and ‘€œdesperately’€ wish they could kick the habit.

This is according to a recent survey by Nicorette ‘€“ a manufacturer of nicotine-replacement products that aid smokers who want to quit smoking.

When asked whether they enjoyed smoking, 62% of men and 68% of women indicated that they did not.

Three-quarters of smokers had tried to give up in the past 12 months, but only a third had succeeded. And while mind over matter, coupled with the desire to stop smoking is the first step, (76% of those attempting to quit relied on willpower to stop smoking), most (over 65%) admitted to failing in their attempts over the previous year ‘€“ though 25% are still trying.

After sheer willpower, nicotine replacement therapy (NRT) was the next smoking cessation option for quitters, with over 22% relying on NRT and additional assistance to kick the habit.

For most smokers, the strongest motivation for quitting was health concerns. Only 17% of men and women said higher tobacco taxes or expensive cigarettes would motivate them to stop.

Stricter legislation from government and a general shift in attitudes towards smoking revealed an overwhelmingly negative outlook on smoking: 72% of participants having become more negative towards smoking in the past 12 months, while those who still maintained their contentment for the habit were at a low 3%.

Compared to the first Smoking Survey conducted in 2009, this shows that attitudes towards tobacco are steadily becoming less and less tolerant – among smokers and non-smokers alike.

Sources: SAPA, Health24

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