Smoking cessation data suggests treatment among best ways to quit

The U.S. Preventive Services Task Force (USPSTF) recently concluded that the best ways to quit smoking are behavioral interventions, including one-on-one counseling, phone counseling and self-help methods, and medications such as nicotine replacement, bupropion and varenicline. USPSTF, a federally-appointed group of independent experts in preventive and evidence-based medicine, reviewed U.S. data on smoking cessation in a recent report published in the Annals of Internal Medicine. These methods, whether used alone or in combination, gives smokers the best chance to kick the habit, according to the report.

As e-cigarettes become a more popular quitting technique, the task force said there is not enough information to recommend them. The trials investigating behavioral tobacco dependence treatment and drug-based approaches were “more convincing,” according to a recent Time article. Counseling and self-help materials improved quit rates from 7 to 13 percent compared to the 5 to 11 percent rates reported from those who did not receive similar support.