Use of cessation methods among smokers aged 16-24 years--United States, 2003

MMWR Morb Mortal Wkly Rep. 2006 Dec 22;55(50):1351-4.


Smoking cessation among adolescent smokers is relatively rare, with approximately 15.6% of smokers aged 12-19 years quitting smoking in a 4-year period (approximately 4% per year). Rates for failed quitting attempts among younger smokers are higher than those for adults (43%), with approximately 58% of high-school smokers having tried to quit at least once for 1 day or longer in the preceding year. To track the history of quitting behavior among smokers aged 16-24 years, Roswell Park Cancer Institute (Buffalo, New York) initiated the 2-year longitudinal National Youth Smoking Cessation Survey (NYSCS) in 2003. This report summarizes key findings from the survey regarding lifetime use of smoking-cessation methods. The findings indicated that smokers aged 16-24 years who had tried to quit were more likely to use unassisted quitting methods than assisted quitting methods; none of the unassisted methods are recommended by the Public Health Service (PHS) clinical guidelines for treatment of tobacco use and dependence, whereas most of the assisted methods are recommended for adults and have been determined to be effective. Many youths aged 16-24 years are trying to quit smoking but often underestimate the rapid progression to tobacco dependence; therefore, PHS clinical practice guidelines for treating tobacco use and dependence recommend that certain clinical interventions proven to be effective among adults be used in youth-based approaches to cessation. In addition, other components of comprehensive tobacco-control programs also increase smoking cessation and should be implemented at CDC-recommended levels to lower tobacco use among youths and adults.

MeSH terms

  • Adolescent
  • Adult
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Smoking Cessation* / methods
  • Smoking Cessation* / statistics & numerical data
  • United States / epidemiology