KUALA LUMPUR, Jan 10 — Smokers in England are lighting up less than 10 years ago, but they are also not as willing to try to quit the habit, a study showed.
Daily Mail reported a study by University College London (UCL) that found smokers were smoking about three cigarettes fewer every day in 2017, compared to 2008, in an analysis of 41,610 smokers. Smokers in 2017 smoked an average of 10.9 cigarettes daily, dropping from 13.6 in 2008.
However, the percentage of smokers who tried to quit in the past year fell from 37 per cent when asked in 2008, to about 30 per cent in 2017.
The percentage of smokers trying to cut down on cigarettes also dropped from about 56 per cent to about 48 per cent over the same period.
“The decline in the proportion of smokers trying to quit or cut down is a worrying trend,” study lead author Dr Claire Garnett was quoted saying.
“[It] may reflect budget cuts on tobacco control, including mass media expenditure and stop-smoking services. These are known to be effective and it is a false economy to be cutting back on these.”
Daily Mail reported that smoking in England is at a record low, falling from about 21 per cent in 2008 to 15 per cent in 2017, according to the Office for National Statistics.
Experts attributed this to the smoking ban in enclosed public spaces that were enforced since 2007.
“Lower levels of cigarette dependence consistently predict greater quit success,” study authors were quoted saying.