If you’re a regular visitor of our blog, you know that there are loads of tips and tricks, from the conventional to the downright weird, that can help youor a mate quit smoking. A recent study has found one more thing to add to the list: talking to your kids about the many dangers of smoking combustible cigs.

A study conducted by researchers from the Public Health Division of RTI International, a major research institute, found that parents who are looking to quit would do well to obtain pamphlets, books, and other media about the dangers of tobacco to share with their kids. The study was designed to test the “hypothesis that providing antismoking socialization to children would lower the odds of relapse within a sub-sample of parents who had recently quit smoking”.

Participants of the study were parents of children 8 - 10 years old. Who had recently called Quitlines, a national smoking cessation service in the US Parents were split into “treatment” and “control” groups, with one group receiving educational materials as part of a program called “Smoke-free Kids,” while the other half received no help at all.  Smoke-free Kids materials included educational literature as well as activities, such as a list of questions for children to ask their parents about their smoking habits.

“The program leveraged parents’ expertise as smokers by engaging them to educate their children about addiction, withdrawal and relapse,” said Dr. Christine Jackson, co-author of the study. 

Among the nearly 500 study participants, the members of the treatment group, who received the materials, were twice as likely to abstain from smoking during the yearlong follow-up period.  The results of the study were originally published in Nicotine & Tobacco Research and is the first study of its kind.

"Our research is important because it suggests an entirely new approach to helping adults, specifically adults who are parents of school-aged children, succeed in quitting smoking," said Jackson.

We agree that there’s no better reason to quit smoking than family. Plus, no one can guilt you like your kids!