Sex differences in kicking the butt 'relatively little'
Researchers have challenged an enduring belief that women were less successful than men in quitting smoking.
In the new study, researchers found convincing evidence that across all of the age groups, "there [is] relatively little difference in cessation between the sexes."
The researchers used data from major national surveys in the United States, Canada, and England to approximate the rates of smoking cessation by age in men and women.
They did find a pattern of sex differences in smoking cessation which was consistent across all surveyed countries. According to the study, "below age 50, women were more likely to have given up smoking completely compared to men, while among older age groups, men were more likely to have quit than women."
Different age groups had sex differences in smoking cessation but the authors are not sure what accounted for the finding.
This most recent study is the largest epidemiological study to date, and the authors have found no solid evidence to support the longstanding claims that smoking cessation is more difficult for women.
According to the study, "the myth of female disadvantage at quitting smoking is bad, first and foremost, for women" because they may get discouraged quickly and end their efforts prematurely.
But the authors also expressed that it is detrimental for men who may think they are at an advantage and then not put forth the proper effort to end their smoking habit.
The study claims, "it is time to put aside the idea that women are less successful than men at giving up smoking."
The study has been published in the journal Tobacco Control.