Smoking cessation intervention in parents of young children: a randomised controlled trial

Addiction. 2005 Nov;100(11):1731-40. doi: 10.1111/j.1360-0443.2005.01231.x.


Objective: To examine whether telephone counselling based on the stages of change component of Transtheoretical model of behaviour change together with educational materials could help non-motivated smoking parents of young children to cease.

Design: Randomised controlled trial.

Setting: Hong Kong Special Administrative Region, PR China.

Participants: 952 smoker fathers and mothers of Chinese children aged 5 years.

Intervention: Participants were randomly allocated into two groups: the intervention group received printed self-help materials and three-session telephone-based smoking cessation counselling delivered by trained counsellors; the control group received printed self-help materials only. A structured questionnaire was used for data collection at baseline and at 1, 3 and 6 month follow up.

Main outcome measures: The main outcome is 7 day point prevalence quit rate at 6 months (defined as not smoking during the 7 days preceding the 6 month follow up) determined by self reports. Other secondary outcomes were self reported 24 h point prevalence quit rate and self-reported continuous quit rate and bio-chemically validated quit rate at 6 months.

Results: A total of 952 smoker fathers and mothers were randomized to the intervention (n = 467) and control (n = 485) groups. Most were daily smokers (92.4%) and the mean number of cigarettes smoked per day was 14.5 (SD = 8.9). By using intention-to-treat analysis, the 7 day point prevalence quit rate at 6 month follow up was significantly greater in the intervention group (15.3%; 68/444) than the control group (7.4%; 34/459) (P < 0.001). The absolute risk reduction was 7.9% (95% confidence interval: 3.78% to 12.01%). The number needed to treat to get one additional smoker to quit was 13 (95% CI: 8-26). The crude odds ratio of quitting was 2.3(95% CI: 1.5-3.5). The adjusted odds ratio was 2.1 (95% CI: 1.4-3.4) (adjusted for age, number of years smoked, and alcohol dependency).

Conclusion: Proactive telephone counselling is an effective aid to promote smoking cessation among parents of young children.

Publication types

  • Randomized Controlled Trial
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Child, Preschool
  • Counseling / methods
  • Female
  • Health Education / methods
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Parents / psychology*
  • Smoking Cessation / methods*
  • Smoking Prevention
  • Telephone
  • Tobacco Smoke Pollution / prevention & control*
  • Treatment Outcome


  • Tobacco Smoke Pollution