Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Smartphone apps to help smokers quit come up short

Date:
November 14, 2013
Source:
Health Behavior News Service, Center for Advancing Health
Summary:
Most popular smartphone apps do not include evidence-based practices known to help smokers quit, finds a new study.

Smart phone apps do not promote aspects of treatments that have proven to work in quitting smoking.
Credit: Sabphoto / Fotolia

Many of the 11 million smokers in the U.S. have downloaded smartphone apps created to help them quit smoking. But since most of these apps don't include practices proven to help smokers quit, they may not be getting the help they need, reports a new study in the American Journal of Preventive Medicine.

Related Articles


"Currently available, popular (most downloaded) smoking cessation apps have low levels of adherence to key evidence-based practices and few apps provide counseling on how to quit, recommend approved quit smoking medications or refer a user to a quit line," said the study's lead author Lorien C. Abroms, ScD., assistant professor at the George Washington School of Public Health and Health Services.

"Still, there appears to be a high global demand for smoking cessation apps since over 700,000 apps are downloaded each month for the Android operating system alone," he said.

Abroms and his colleagues analyzed popular smoking cessation apps in February 2012. Researchers studied the most popular apps -- 47 for the iPhone and 51 for the Android operating system -- and found that apps for both systems had a low adherence to the U.S. Public Health Service's Clinical Practice Guidelines for Treating Tobacco Use and Dependence.

Michael C. Fiore, M.D., MPH, professor of medicine and director of the Center for Tobacco Research and Intervention at the University of Wisconsin School of Medicine and Public Health pointed out that "even though the study found that popular smoking cessation apps have a low level of adherence to evidence-based guidelines, it is a hopeful sign that people want to quit and scientists and technicians are coming up with applications to help them. But the bad news is smartphone apps may not give people the guidance they need."

Researchers acknowledge that while they know what helps people quit smoking generally, little is known about what aspects of smoking cessation programs should be included in mobile apps. Still, Abroms noted that "they [smartphone apps] do not promote aspects of treatments that have proven to work in quitting smoking and so we as public health professionals have reason to be concerned."

"What we're missing with smartphone apps is universally recognized, science-based recommendations," said Fiore. "We're obliged to give smokers the best possible, quality help. Science-based help is what smokers get when they call quit lines -- there are over 1,000 quit lines available to U.S. smokers and that's where they can get one-stop help."


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by Health Behavior News Service, Center for Advancing Health. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Journal Reference:

  1. Lorien C. Abroms, Nalini Padmanabhan, Lalida Thaweethai, Todd Phillips. iPhone Apps for Smoking Cessation. American Journal of Preventive Medicine, 2011; 40 (3): 279 DOI: 10.1016/j.amepre.2010.10.032

Cite This Page:

Health Behavior News Service, Center for Advancing Health. "Smartphone apps to help smokers quit come up short." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 14 November 2013. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2013/11/131114155752.htm>.
Health Behavior News Service, Center for Advancing Health. (2013, November 14). Smartphone apps to help smokers quit come up short. ScienceDaily. Retrieved October 30, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2013/11/131114155752.htm
Health Behavior News Service, Center for Advancing Health. "Smartphone apps to help smokers quit come up short." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2013/11/131114155752.htm (accessed October 30, 2014).

Share This



More Health & Medicine News

Thursday, October 30, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

Mind-Controlled Prosthetic Arm Restores Amputee Dexterity

Mind-Controlled Prosthetic Arm Restores Amputee Dexterity

Reuters - Innovations Video Online (Oct. 29, 2014) A Swedish amputee who became the first person to ever receive a brain controlled prosthetic arm is able to manipulate and handle delicate objects with an unprecedented level of dexterity. The device is connected directly to his bone, nerves and muscles, giving him the ability to control it with his thoughts. Matthew Stock reports. Video provided by Reuters
Powered by NewsLook.com
Google To Use Nanoparticles, Wearables To Detect Disease

Google To Use Nanoparticles, Wearables To Detect Disease

Newsy (Oct. 29, 2014) Google X wants to improve modern medicine with nanoparticles and a wearable device. It's all an attempt to tackle disease detection and prevention. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Can Drinking Milk Lead To Early Death?

Can Drinking Milk Lead To Early Death?

Newsy (Oct. 29, 2014) Researchers in Sweden released a study showing heavy milk drinkers face an increased mortality risk from a variety of causes. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Obama: The US Will Not 'run and Hide' From Ebola

Obama: The US Will Not 'run and Hide' From Ebola

AP (Oct. 29, 2014) Surrounded by health care workers in the White House East Room, President Barack Obama said the U.S. will likely see additional Ebola cases in the weeks ahead. But he said the nation can't seal itself off in the fight against the disease. (Oct. 29) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:

Breaking News:

Strange & Offbeat Stories


Health & Medicine

Mind & Brain

Living & Well

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

    Environment News

    Technology News



    Save/Print:
    Share:

    Free Subscriptions


    Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

    Get Social & Mobile


    Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

    Have Feedback?


    Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
    Mobile: iPhone Android Web
    Follow: Facebook Twitter Google+
    Subscribe: RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
    Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins