Smoking prevalence, quit attempts and successes

Health Rep. 1998 Spring;9(4):31-7(Eng); 31-8(Fre).
[Article in English, French]


Objectives: This article provides a brief overview and update of Canadian smoking trends since 1966. It presents the characteristics of daily smokers who have successfully quit as well as those who have tried to quit but continue to smoke daily.

Data sources: The time series smoking data are from a variety of surveys. The analyses pertaining to individuals who tried to quit smoking and those who successfully quit are based on a Health Canada-sponsored supplement to the 1994/95 National Population Health Survey (NPHS).

Main results: In contrast to the overall trend, smoking rates among teens have been rising in the 1990s. Approximately 16% of daily smokers reported that they had recently stopped smoking. The majority of former daily smokers indicated that their main reason for quitting was concern about their future health. The vast majority reported that they had gone cold turkey. About four in ten daily smokers reported that they had tried, unsuccessfully to quit smoking in the 12 months before their NPHS interview.

MeSH terms

  • Adolescent
  • Adult
  • Aged
  • Canada / epidemiology
  • Female
  • Health Surveys
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Prevalence
  • Smoking / epidemiology*
  • Smoking / trends
  • Smoking Cessation / statistics & numerical data*