The journey to quitting smoking

Health Rep. 2005 May;16(3):19-36.


Objectives: This article outlines smoking trends over the past 10 years among the population aged 18 or older. Factors associated with smoking cessation and relapse are examined, as well as factors associated with having no intention of quitting in the next 6 months.

Data sources: Data are from the household cross-sectional and longitudinal components of Statistics Canada's National Population Health Survey (1994/95 to 2002/03) (NPHS) and from the 2000/01 and 2003 Canadian Community Health Survey (CCHS).

Analytical techniques: Trends in smoking rates were calculated using cross-sectional data from the NPHS and the CCHS. Factors associated with cessation and relapsing were examined using pooling of repeated observations over two-year periods and logistic regression based on NPHS longitudinal data from 1994/95 to 2002/03. Factors associated with having no plans to quit were examined with logistic regression, based on 2003 CCHS cross-sectional data.

Main results: In 2003, 19% of the Canadian population aged 18 or older smoked cigarettes daily, down 7 percentage points from a decade earlier. Smoking cessation, relapsing and having no plans to quit were all associated with addiction levels, notably, cigarettes smoked per day. Smoke-free homes and workplace smoking bans were associated with reduced cigarette consumption.

MeSH terms

  • Adolescent
  • Adult
  • Canada / epidemiology
  • Cross-Sectional Studies
  • Female
  • Health Surveys
  • Humans
  • Longitudinal Studies
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Recurrence
  • Smoking / epidemiology*
  • Smoking / psychology
  • Smoking Cessation / statistics & numerical data*
  • Social Class
  • Stress, Psychological
  • Tobacco Use Disorder