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Quitting smoking

The majority (64%) of Canadians who have ever been smokers have now quit.

Nearly two-thirds (64%) of smokers were seriously considering quitting in the next six months; three in 10 (31%) were considering quitting in the next month.

  • More males than females were seriously considering quitting smoking in the next six months and in the next 30 days.
  • Intentions to quit did not differ significantly by age group; the majority of smokers in all age groups were considering quitting.

Half of smokers tried to quit in the past year. Many tried more than once.

  • A greater percentage of males had made a quit attempt, compared to females.
  • Quit attempts varied by age group. The percentage of smokers who had tried to quit was highest among young smokers, and appeared to decline with age.

Among respondents who had made a quit attempt in the past year, 11% were still abstinent from smoking at the time they were surveyed.

Six per cent of current and former smokers who tried to quit in the past year used a telephone quitline for assistance.

The most recent data available for other forms of cessation assistance (from 2012) indicated that stop-smoking medications were used by nearly half (44%) of those who attempted to quit, while other forms of assistance were less popular.

Three-quarters of recent quitters cited health as their main reason for quitting smoking.